On 15 February 2003, an estimated two million people marched to protest against War in Iraq, and this column on the Guardian website says, I think, pretty much all that can be said about it. A very strong bit of writing, I think, and his point about the divide between government and the people is one which I’d cheerfully agree with; I’ve posted before about how I disagree that ‘apathy’ is why voting turnout is on the decline, and I think the way the protests were discounted in the rush to declare war is an example of why it’s more the fault of the parties, in and out of power, failing to actually listen to the public that makes people feel disenfranchised.
(Mind you, I’m not pretending that publishing this terrific column in any way means the Guardian is a good newspaper, given that within a day of publishing it they also published this, which appears to have been written by the son of someone who’s worked for the Guardian before. And which was rapidly given a good kicking by people posting comments, leading to the thread being locked by moderators. And then this response, which contains an amusingly provocative distinction in its final paragraph. So no, I won’t be buying the Guardian any time soon – ich bin nicht ein Berliner Leser and all that.)