• 16:45
  • Friday ,18 October 2013
العربية

A Sword Upon the Copts' Neck

Magdy Malak

Article Of The Day

22:10

Saturday ,19 October 2013

A Sword Upon the Copts' Neck

I can understand that Egypt needs to calm down after a long time of demonstrations, and strikes that has been present from the past two years. At the same time, however, we can't use this reason to kill the right of demonstrating. 

 

I am speaking mainly about the last demonstration law issued by the Government. We put a lot of restrictions to practice the rights of demonstrating. One of these restrictions in this law is that no demonstrations in front of governmental or military organizations allowed. Another example of this restriction  is that demonstrators should inform the authorities far in prior to actually demonstrating.
 

I myself saw how many times the chaos when people demonstrate in front of these types of organizations, but if nobody responds to the concerned people, how will they their requests answered? This is why most people in Egypt are demonstrating. They couldn't find a way to communicate with people in charge to solve their problems.

 

If I established a way to speak to those in charge and my issues could be resolved, I wouldn't have to resort to demonstrations and delay my life to receive a response to my requests. My main fear is that this law will be used against the Copts. We all know that after the 25 of January Revolution, Copts succeeded in conducting demonstrations outside of the Church and Cathedral. After a long time of being seized inside the church, I am afraid that this legislation will push Copts to return back to the Churches and Cathedral, and lose one of the biggest advantages of being a normal citizen.

 

I know the Muslim Brotherhood is now destroying perception of demonstrations by demonstrating everywhere and delaying everything in the country, which pushed the Government to issue that law. However, to stop someone from making a mistake, you shouldn't prevent a whole country from a right. The Muslim Brotherhood is now prohibited from practicing any kind of political work. The Government doesn't need to issue more severe legislation to prevent the community from practicing their rights.

 

The Government should focus on issuing legislation related to the real life of the Egyptian people. We need legislation to protect our agricultural land, the Nile river, to encourage foreign investment, to protect our traffic, to protect our health, our hospitals, more than preventing people from protesting their opinions.  What we need from the Government is organization, not prevention. We need the Government to educate the people on how, when, and where to demonstrate. Like all developed countries, there are always rules put forth for demonstrations. Prevention, however, means a set back to before the Revolution of 2011.

 

In the end, we should recognize that prohibiting something is never a solution. Mubarak prohibited Egyptians from expressing their opinions and was neglecting their requests. As a result, we witnessed the Revolution. If we want a real, tangible, solution, we should search for plausible alternatives, not temporary bandaids. If the Government insisted on not listening to Political Activists and Politicians in regards to this law, I don't think we will be seeing positive results.