An Old Fart's Take on the UC Student Protests

While part of me can appreciate the passion and anger raised by the cuts to public education, the greater part of me sees the protests as doing nothing but polarizing public opinion against the cause.

What does blocking a freeway and causing a massive traffic jam and screwing up people's work days do but piss them off, get them in trouble and make them hate on the idiots who thought it was a good idea?

Much like the underlying sentiment of Critical Mass is lost in the colossal pain in the ass it is for people caught in it when they just want to get home or to work or where ever they need to go.

And what are they really expecting to happen anyway? That the state government is gonna go "Oh gosh, you're really pissed, how about we stop fixing the roads and keeping the prisons open so that you can get a cheap education?". There is no money, the state is $20 billion in the hole. Protest until the cows grow wings and fly to the moon and it isn't going to change the basic fact that there is no more money.

It is, to a lesser extent, the same as showing up for the school board hearings here to protest the cuts that have to be made. Many of the arguments are similar, like the administrators should be taking cuts right alongside the rest of us. But asking the people making the cuts to cut their own pay is really just not going to happen regardless of how long a ways it would go to soothing aggravated students and parents.

Protests do not, as a rule, effect the people they should be effecting. They directly impact people that are right there in the trenches and would otherwise be sympathetic to the protesters if only the protesters weren't behaving like assholes. In the end, the protesters lose public support and their message is diluted by people who break shit just to break shit, who protest just because its more fun than going to classes.

In the end it feels like a big waste of time to no useful end.
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