“It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity.” –Albert Einstein
Technology is a rising fad; everybody wants the new, hot item. From Facebook to Twitter to Myspace, it’s how everyone communicates these days. Little did we know the effect the Internet can actually have on people and world events The simple way to communicate via social networking sites can go a lot farther and cause a lot more damage or possibly changes for the better then the intended purpose of just using it to talk to people. This is exactly how the current giant protests in Egypt started, all from a Facebook page. A page was set up with a time and a place for a Million Man March in protest against the current president of Egypt. Who knew Facebook could have such power?
Right now in Egypt, riots have been breaking out all over and protesters are swarming the streets. They all want one thing, for the current president, Hosni Mubarak, to step down. He has been ruling Egypt as a dictator for many years and the citizens are fed up with his ways, they are demanding a democratic country. Egyptians are insisting on their rights; they are finally standing up and want Mubarak out of office. For about the past 30 years, Mubarak has been in control. He is causing many young men to not have a large opportunity to work, leaving them scrambling for money. Because of him, there is a huge gap between the rich and the poor. He is controlling the way they live by having his people get rid of anything he feels they shouldn’t see, and censoring out many websites we use on a daily basis such as Twitter and Facebook. His people have minimal rights. This started the day he stepped into office thirty years ago, from his first day he was a dictator.
“A feeling amongst the middle class is that they’re not being given the opportunities in life that their degrees warrant — what historians would call a ‘blocked elite,'” Juan Cole, a Middle East historian at the University of Michigan, said. A majority of the protesters are educated, middle-class men who have lost their rights due to Mubarak’s dictatorship. They are willing to risk anything to get it back. Fighting and rioting in the streets has been occurring the past few days and Egypt has been in chaos. The United States wants to help but we have very little ‘wiggle room’. If we choose to support Mubarak, the citizens of Egypt will believe that we are promoting dictatorship as an acceptable form of leadership, which is not what we stand for. However, if the join with the people and try to push Mubarak out of power, other countries we have an alliance with will see how easily we had turned on the president of a country we had peace with, and they will start to wonder how dependable we are. Either way, it’s a tough situation for us, but we don’t want to be thought of as not being able to assist a country that is very clearly in need.
I believe that we need to help out Egypt as soon as possible and not just sit around watching. I think it would be in our best interest to show sympathy to both sides. We need to support the people in getting them a new president who will give them a democracy, and a fair chance at a decent life. However, we also need to help out Mubarak in not forcing him out of office this very second. Mubarak recently announced that he would step down when his term ended in September, but the people want him out now. I think that, with the help of our country, they should make an agreement, that instead of him continuing to be in charge for the next eight months, they can meet in the middle. It would be fair to both sides if he stepped down in four months, half of the time it would have been to his original date of leaving office. Either way, what’s going on in Egypt is not okay and we need to help out. After all, if one country becomes out of control and we do nothing about it, who knows how many countries may follow. And just think, this was all prompted from a regular Facebook group, just like the ones we join every day.
In history, we had one class period to compose a free write on the situation in Egypt. I felt strongly about the technology aspect of it and the power the technology had on the beginnings of the riots and outbreaks in Egypt. I am pleased that I put significant effort into using more quotes and things that people said who are experiencing the situation in Egypt. I think my writing has improved from the beginning of the year and my writing has become more sophisticated. It was a bit of a challenge writing this essay in the limited time we had and we couldn’t research any more than the information we already had. However, I believe that I produced a good essay considering the circumstances.