Elections and rallies

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No one has really asked for my opinion, but I thought I'd write a little something for my non-Russian-speaking friends outside of Russia. Yes, I've been to elections on the 4th of December and to the rally on the 10th. And I intend to go to future rallies too. My answers to the questions "Why?" and "What for?" might be of some interest.

I consider myself politically naive, internet-addicted and slightly idealistic. I think these characteristics are shared by many participants of the Saturday rally. The whole fuss about recent elections in Russia is based on beliefs, as far as I can understand.

All of a sudden a large group of fairly young people started to believe that their votes actually can change something. They were so keen to see changes, that many of them became observers at the elections. Many of my friends did. Many of them witnessed election fraud. Some people I know personally did witness that. With all due respect for Mr. Medvedev, I have more trust in people that I know. So, like many others, I have a belief that the elections were rigged. Of course, this can only be proved in court. But I also believe Russia lacks fair courts, just as it lacks fair elections. This seems to be a stalemate.

I believe a revolution is NOT what Russia needs at the moment. Yet, I went to the rally. It is not because I wanted to support some particular political party. As a matter of fact, there are none at the moment. The ones that took part in the election are either weird survivors of the 1990s or parties that emerged from within the existing bureaucracy. They have their supporters, but hardly can be seen as a political force. United Russia is just a façade for the bureaucracy, which has the real power, the other parties have no power at all. Forces of the opposition are actually so week at the moment, that they can hardly organize the people who want to change something within the country. The people are better ready than the politicians. So I didn't go there for the parties. I believe few people did. The majority went there to demand a fair election. And that's why I went too.

My naivety hardly goes as far as believing that elections would actually be re-run. Although, given the rather stupid behaviour of various Russian officials recently, I cannot exclude that entirely. I'd be deceived to see the protests throughout the country to give no results at all. But even then I wouldn't say I went for nothing. My reasons were the following.

The governments we have on Earth are far from being ideal. They were meant to serve the people and protect their rights, but they fail more than often. Human rights are often disrespected even by the most «democratic» states. Yet, some states are considered to be better, more comfortable for their people, than others. I think this is a result of some process, through which both government and people in some countries believe some of the rights are really inalienable. Under no condition. I am not speaking about human rights. Especially not about the personal ones. It turns out that we have some collective rights, that cannot be taken from us. For instance, Moscow dwellers have a right to electricity. This is not part of the Constitution, but it is unthinkable that some government would try to deprive people of electricity. Should they try, riots are guaranteed within a day throughout the city. The same might not be true for some African city, where electricity might not be a right, but a privilege. One has to grow to these kinds of undeclared, yet inalienable rights.

My idea behind going to the rally was to make the right to fair elections inherently inalienable. This might not happen within the century in Russia. But I believe that every little bit helps. I am an idealist, as I said earlier.

Один комментарий к “Elections and rallies”

  • Francois:

    Well spoken ! I hadn't read it all when you posted the link, but this is a broad political platform and it's a good minimum to fight for ! I like the comparison with electricity.

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