Social JusticeCivics

What is a protest?

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Has something ever upset you and made you want to share your frustration with others? When this happens, some people protest. A protest is a gathering of people who want to express their disapproval in a public way. At a protest, people usually speak out against something they do not agree with.

A protest can be a symbol of democracy, because people are expressing their freedom of speech and standing up for what they believe is right. Sometimes people have protests to express their desire for laws that keep the environment clean and healthy. Other people protest because they do not earn enough money to live or because they do not agree with all the wars and violence in the world.

Fortunately, most protests are peaceful. People usually hold signs, sing songs and hand out papers with information so everyone can learn about why they are having a protest. The goal is to draw attention from the media or other citizens and put pressure on powerful decision makers to make changes for the better. When protests are peaceful and nonviolent, people are more likely to be respected and listened to.

by Lauren Orkus (Whyzz writer)

Further Information

Mohandas K. Gandhi called Mahatma (meaning "Great Soul") Gandhi led one of history's most famous protests. He lived around one hundred years ago in South Africa and later in India and he is famous for his non-violent form of protesting how poor people had to live in India. Gandhi believed that a person should stand up against laws he or she felt were unfair, but should also be willing to accept the consequences for doing so. Through his protests and a peaceful march through India that was joined by tens of thousands of people called the Salt March, India became independent from the foreign English government.