As you've probably heard on the news recently, large crowds have taken to the streets making a rather large ruckus of things. And as the large numbers increased, as expected, violence broke out. As a response to these "riots", an authoritative police force stepped up and attempted to crush the rebellious and the violent alike. This is happening on two entirely different sides of the world right now. The difference between the two? One riot is over personal rights and a fed-up group of citizens concerned about their country's future and an accused stolen election. The other riot is over celebration of a professional sports game. Kind of sad in comparison, huh?
IN LOS ANGELES:
This week marks a celebratory notch on LA's sports-belt as the Lakers won the NBA Finals for the 10th time in LA history. As expected, with the Lakers being greater than Jesus in Los Angeles, people were more than excited. Young and old (mainly the young) took to the streets in celebration throughout the city and as the crowds grew, random violence broke out. People destroyed property, attacked other civilians and police, and set things on fire; causing general chaos and destruction. As the violence and celebration increased, LA police organized on the streets to push down the rebellious crowds. Riot gear, clubs, and guns. Officers collected and marched toward the dissenting crowd to squash their celebration and the riot that it became.
It has been several hours now but the riots were eventually squashed with several people arrested and no lives lost. Property has been destroyed and the damage done but the crowds were disbursed. Thankfully, come the next morning, this entire night will be forgotten as LA celebrates all over again with a huge parade in honor of the Lakers and their victory.
This week marks an important notch on Iran's electoral-belt as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won the presidency for the 2nd time in Iran. As expected, with Ahmadinejad being greater than God in Iran, people were more than upset. Young and old (mainly the young) took to the streets in protest throughout the country and as the crowds grew, random violence broke out. People destroyed property, attacked other civilians and police, and set things on fire; causing general chaos and destruction. As the violence and dissent increased, Iranian police organized on the streets to push down the rebellious crowds. Riot gear, tanks, and guns. Officers collected and marched toward the dissenting crowd to squash their protest and the riot that it became.
It has been two days now and the riots are still occurring with a few hundred people arrested and several lives lost. Property has been destroyed and the damage done but the crowds still remain in the streets. Unfortunately, come the next morning, this entire week will live on as Iran continues to fall apart from political dissent and violence as people riot in protest to Ahmadinejad and his victory.
It really is amazing to look at the similarities between the two events. And disappointing to recognize the differences as well. While on one side of the world, young Iranians rebelliously fight for their right to a fair election and to have their political opinion heard, young Angeleans (is that what they call us?) drunkenly fight over a basketball game.
In LA tonight, several stores were looted, a police cruiser was destroyed, and people were injured all because some drunk assholes decided it would be more fun to take advantage of their freedom to assemble (how ever much that right may diminish) and break a few things and cause chaos. In Iran, we've seen similar on a far grander scale, including people being attacked by police and civilians alike, others being denied medical treatment for injuries due to the riots, and worse. The Iranian government is trying hard to cover up this glitch in this potential sham-electoral process as people are obviously upset about an inconcrugency in the votes for either major candidate: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad vs. Mir Hossein Mousavi. To add further kindling to the fire, the losing candidate, Mousavi, has been arrested in what seems to be a drastic move to stomp out encouragement toward protesting.
Something major is going on over in Iran at the moment and only time will tell how it ends. I just wish that people here in LA and other parts of California and the United States didn't take our freedoms for granted so much. While others in the world go to the streets to fight for their political opinion to be heard, us Californians take to the streets to destroy stuff in celebration of a basketball team winning their Finals. It is severely disappointing to see violent cowards take advantage of a good thing and turn it into something terrible. Not only does it ruin the celebration for others but it weakens the underlying concept of a people's right to assemble. When boozed up morons decide to resort to violence and rioting for their own drunken amusement, it further cheapens the importance and impact of such a drastic and dangerous action of dissent.
In the end though, rioting should never be encouraged in any situation and I hope that the people of Iran find peace in the conclusion of this eventually. Truth must be brought forward. Hopefully more people mustn't die for it to happen.
To follow up on info on the Iran riots and protests:
List of Twitter Accounts: LINK
Twitter Account Relaying Events: http://twitter.com/iranelection09
Updated List of News Sources and tweets: http://iran.twazzup.com/
Here are some additional videos and photos of the protests to view as well:
Flicker account showing riots
Liveleak Video of riots