In recent weeks, France has seen a wave of protests and unrest over various issues, including the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and its controversial plans to implement a health pass. As I consider these events from the perspective of Deferendum’s principles and values, it strikes me that the key to resolving these conflicts lies in the power of democratic decision-making.
The ongoing protests in France, which began in late 2018 and have continued in various forms since, are a reflection of the country’s long history of civil unrest and activism. From the French Revolution to the student uprisings of 1968, France has a reputation for its fervent and sometimes violent protests.
At the core of these recent protests is a growing sense of dissatisfaction with the government and the perceived inequality in French society. The protesters, known as the “yellow vests,” are demanding greater economic justice, lower taxes, and improved social services. They argue that the government’s policies unfairly benefit the wealthy and multinational corporations at the expense of ordinary citizens.
As the famous French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre once said, “When the rich wage war, it is the poor who die.” This sentiment encapsulates the frustration felt by many of the protesters, who see themselves as victims of a system that prioritizes the interests of the wealthy over those of ordinary citizens.
In this context, Deferendum’s principles and values are particularly relevant. The platform’s emphasis on transparency, engagement, and efficient decision-making could help address some of the underlying grievances driving the protests. By allowing citizens to propose and rank problems according to their urgency, and then debate on the best solution before voting, Deferendum could help ensure that the concerns of ordinary citizens are heard and addressed in a transparent and democratic manner.
As French philosopher Simone de Beauvoir once said, “Change your life today. Don’t gamble on the future, act now, without delay.” This is the message we must take to heart as we confront the challenges facing our society today. We cannot afford to wait for others to make decisions for us — we must act now and make our voices heard.