Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Bread and Circusses, Part II

From The Washington Post, we learn:
"It's like the government is declaring war on civil society and they just wish we would all zone out and watch South Asian film stars dancing around, instead of the news. We aren't some huge danger to the state. Why don't they go target the suicide bombers?" said Romessa Khan, 20, a major in painting at the National College of Arts Lahore, where students gathered in a courtyard Tuesday, worried about family members and neighbors who had been carted off to jail.

But the NCA is not exactly a hub of pro-democracy activism (unlike, say, LUMS where a large demonstration has just been raided). As the article goes on to note:

A group of students at the National College of Arts chain-smoked, passed around headphones pumping out Urdu pop and riffed on the best way to protest emergency rule. In the end, they decided that any form of civil disobedience -- be it a protest song or an artistic rendering of jail scenes -- would be too dangerous.

Back to the news about LUMS. The administration really deserves praise and recognition for being the only university administration in the country to criticize the arrest of members of its faculty and express solidarity with those who wish to exercise "their right to peaceful assembly and freedom of expression."

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