I was lately asked to think about the question why the revolutionary youth in Egypt stopped protesting. It is true, almost unnoticed the square has been empty during the past few months.
Why would they be protesting, and why would they not protest anymore?
Why protest? The Muslim Brotherhood has won a majority in parliament and will play a major role in writing the constitution and probably deliver the new president. So, protest? Yes, because the Muslim Brotherhood is not a democratic party. On the contrary, it is theocratic party that supports the oppression of women, Copts and economic deprived as second class citizens.
Why not protest? But, what if they have been chosen in a democratic way? Didn’t they win the elections? Yes, but where the elections fair? Some say they were not, many illiterate (and literate) voters were persuaded to vote for the MB. The MB had given them rice, meat, social services in a structural way and also bought votes with money.
On the other hand, a bad educated religiously conservative population can hardly be expected to vote anything else than the well organized Islamic party, let not fool anyone by believing that the secular leftist parties make any chance to win the elections democratically in today’s Egypt.
The MB truly is loved by many, and besides this, SCAF said they will leave after the presidential elections and those will soon be held. There is now a sphere of expectation and hope that everything will turn out well.
But elections are not the end of the quest for democracy. Democracy is more than voting, it involves a radical change in people’s ways of thinking. Once this change has taken place no nondemocratic parties will find support anymore among passive citizens. Passivity ends where the liberating of minds begins.
It is for this quest for democracy that the youth and everyone else must continue to struggle.