Podcast: Headscratchers

Hero Protest


Host: Hello and welcome to the 17th episode of headscratchers! Today, we will be answering the question, 'Does protest work?'. Let's welcome our guests.

Guest 1: Hi! I'm Dani Nico, I'm 11 years old, and I live in Kenilworth with my mum. I think protesting is a great way to get your message across and I have protested before myself! From my experience, the news is a great way to expand your protest and get your message across.

Guest 2: Hello everyone! My name is Candace Fox, and I'm also 11. I live in Oban with my sister and Dad. I think that in the current circumstances, people should not be protesting because they could be spreading coronavirus and unmeaningfully getting everyone sick.

Host: Dani, could you expand on that? How does the news help get your voice heard?

Dani: If you can gather enough followers, your protest will be heard - the news channels and papers will take care of that! The news has a huge influence on your protest, and can be a great help if you want to gain more protesters - it is an excellent way to publicise your protest/cause.

Host: Candace, do you have anything to say about the news?

Candace: Yes, I do. In fact, the news can actually have a very negative impact on your protest.

Host: Ok, Candace. Explain why.

Candace: Well, if the news shows the protest in a bad light, it could have a huge negative impact. For example, if a newspaper only focussed on the bad aspects of a protest, lets say, a riot that took place, then others might think that the protesters are just criminals, when there have actually been mostly peaceful protests. For example, over 90% of the black lives matter protests were peaceful, but the news only really showcased the non - peaceful ones.

Host: Good point. Dani, do you have anything to counter that?

Dani: Actually, no. I do agree with that.

Host: Ok then Dani. It can be good to listen to the other side sometimes. Shall we have Candace opening this time?

Candace: Ok, well... it is our responsibility not to go outside, in a pandemic, so gatherings and marches and such shouldn't be allowed - there are people dying out there!

Host: A strong argument. Well done Candace. Dani, make your point.

Dani: Virtual activism could still be an option, that doesn't need any actual contact.

Host: Have anything to say about that, Candace?

Candace: Hmm. Good point. But, virtual activism could, in theory, lead to physical riots, et cetera when it goes too far.

Host: Well done, both of you. Now, one last point. Dani?

Dani: If you manage to get enough people on your side, then your government (or whoever your aimed audience is) will have no choice but to give up and grant you your wish, whatever that might be! For instance, in Chile, the protests had news coverage worldwide! There was a vote in parliament for if constitution should change, and a new constitution is being drawn up!

Host: Candace?

Candace: I've got a few arguments.

Host: Ok, then. Go for it!

Candace: My first one is, most protests have been completely ignored, however many people there are. One example of this is the protests in Belarus. There are many, many people involved in this - even other countries' governments - but President Alexander Lukashenko is still in charge. Second, It usually takes a really long time (and a whole load of hard work!) to get lots of people involved. Third, sometimes protests only work partially. For example, the extinction rebellion managed to convince the UK's government to declare a climate emergency, but they actually wanted to have all governments declare a global climate emergency. And finally, don't forget that there are other groups too. They can easily counteract your protest. I will use black lives matter as an example again, there was a counter-protest called all lives matter, which stated that no people should be given special attention.

Host: Wow, Candace! That was a lot of explanation!

Candace: Thanks!

Host: No problem.

Dani: Thanks for having me!

Candace: Me too.

Host: Okay, and that wraps it up! If something's got you scratching your head, be sure to send in your questions and comments so we can answer them. We hope you enjoyed this episode of headscratchers. See you next time!

By: shining_queen :) >⩌<

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