Doth Protest Too Much

Zoe Williams on The Guardian’s CiF shows some solidarity with the self-styled ‘eco-protestors’ currently grooving it up in a typically smug self-congratulatory manner in a field near some aeroplanes.

My comment:

Of course, irritating, inconveniencing, berating and annoying ordinary people trying to go about their normal lives up to and beyond the point where they refuse to listen to what you have to say out of sheer bloody-mindedness may – just – in the end be slightly counter-productive.

The best way would be to make your case through argument and debate and appealing to people’s good sense in a positive and constructive way rather than berating them, however this later course can be deeply unsatisfying to those truly committed to their cause as it tends to lack he smug self-satisfied feeling of martyrdom.

Protesters should also be made aware that over-the-top zealotry tends to make people very suspicious of you as a person, rather than drawing attention to the cause you are espousing – as can be seen from some responses to this story here and elsewhere about ‘work-shy layabouts’ and so on.

In short, protesting may make you feel good, but in the words of your teachers when you were at school: ‘it is your own time you are wasting.’

Published by David Hadley

A Bloke. Occasionally points at ducks.

2 thoughts on “Doth Protest Too Much

  1. “The best way would be to make your case through argument and debate and appealing to people’s good sense in a positive and constructive way rather than berating them” And this method has a solid record of success exempliifed by..?

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  2. ‘And this method has a solid record of success exempliifed by?’A fair bit of history, actually. One example off the top of my head is women getting the vote not through the actions of the suffragettes but through their increasing entry into the workplace etc during WWI.Oh, another – what did the Greenham common camp achieve, when placed in the context of the end of the cold war?I could go on, and on.

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