Protest is worthwhile, but only as an initial tactic

“Get rid of Fico” must become “Replace Fico with X”.

(Source: TASR)

How can a government neutralise a protest movement? One way is to give the protestors exactly what they say they want, without fundamentally changing anything. Here’s how it works.

People are generally mobilised by a range of grievances, and protests begin spontaneously. Once they get big enough, the government is forced to react. First, people in power demand protestors come up with a specific list of demands. Next, the government grants those demands without addressing the root issues that those demands represent. Then, either the protests fizzle out on their own, or the government portrays protestors as unreasonable extremists and isolates them from the rest of society. Last year in Slovakia is a fine example.

The rest of this article is premium content at Spectator.sk
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on Spectator.sk
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on Sme.sk and Korzar.sk

Get daily Slovak news directly to your inbox

Top stories

When we knelt in honour of Floyd, something inside me broke

Tyrone Chambers, an American opera singer based in Germany, shares what it feels like to be an American living in Europe, watching the BLM movement from across the ocean.

Black Lives Matter protest in Germany

Vietnamese cuisine in Martin, Vienna tram on a stamp

Check out our tips for trips and some good weekend reads.

The third reconstruction stage of Bratislava Castle leads to a rare archaeological discovery on Aug 6, 2020.

Coronavirus in Slovakia: July saw 12 outbreaks in the country

Statistics from the public health offices show young people were the biggest group among the infected.

Illustrative stock photo

All eyes are on Matovič. He is facing a major task

Slovakia needs to make big decisions. Can it become the European tiger again?

PM Igor Matovič in Brussels.