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Julia Borger Blog Post 11/16

After reading “The Unreported Resistance” in PHUS, I am left with a feeling of disappointment and distress about the relationship between the United States government and its people. This chapter really highlighted the “permanent advarial culture” during the late 1900s that plagued our country. I had always thought Reagan was one of our best presidents, but after reading about the number of contested and controversial events that happened during his time, now I am not so sure. For example, on the topic of nuclear war, the fact that there were 151 meetings on college campuses as well as the largest political demonstration in history of the country taking place in Central Park protesting the arms race, is concerning. I have never even learned nor heard about the Central Park protest, which I think is a significant thing to learn, as it was the largest in history.

I couldn’t help comparing the public unrest and resistance to the government during this time period of the reading, to today’s political climate. I find it crazy that more than 20 years later we are still protesting against the government, almost more than ever before, and the government still doesn’t know how to deal with it. Will there ever be a day when protests and riots mean something to our government? Will we ever have an authoritative figure who cares enough about their “people” to listen to what they are arguing against and fighting for? I believe there is a large disconnect between the government and the citizens of the United States, a gap that has always been there and continues to widen with each passing day, and will only worsen unless something is done. With the election of a new president this year, it will be interesting to see how our country responds to his policies, and whether the protests and resentment towards the government as a whole will change.

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  1. Olivia Cosco Olivia Cosco

    I agree with you that we are seeing the same kind of resistance to our government in today’s world. One thing your question reminds me of was Ezra Klein’s podcast. He discusses how the polarization of our societies political beliefs isn’t necessarily a bad thing; in fact, he believes we need two sides to our political system. My thought is that if Klein is right, we need to get the polarization to a place where there isn’t necessarily violent resistance, by which I mean protests, hate crimes, etc.

  2. Kathrine Yeaw Kathrine Yeaw

    I also think this trend of disconnect between the government and the people is something to be aware of in today’s world. It’s obvious that it has been a problem forever and I like that you brought up the question of how will the government continue to respond? Will they even respond? It’s almost a little worrying that this has been a problem for so long, and it doesn’t seem like it’s going to end very soon.

  3. Olivia Cranshaw Olivia Cranshaw

    Although protests can be great at creating action around a particular cause or idea, I do not think that authorities have to recognize them as a majority of people (even if they do care about the issue) can’t be a part of a long-term protest. I also agree that the New York City Central Park protest needs more attention as it was an extremely historic event not typically covered.

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