“What is the purpose of the massive protests?”, a question that many Portuguese citizens have repeated since the economic crisis started, has become a motto for a Laboratory of Democracy organized by the non-profit association Academia Cidadã (Citizen Academy).
The “informal debate about the occupation of the public space in large scale demonstrations” in Portugal will take place on November 14, 2013, at The Nation Room – Embassy of No Land of 2013's Architecture Triennale of Lisbon, and will be broadcast via livestream:
O que muda no país quando centenas de milhares de pessoas se manifestam? Serve de alguma coisa dizer apenas que o caminho “não é por aí”? Se os políticos não ouvem de que serve perder um dia a gritar? E que alternativas e propostas têm os protestantes? Quem organiza as manifestações deve ser responsabilizado pela situações de violência? Ou a violência é a resposta possível ao estado a que chegámos? A polícia tem agentes infiltrados a criar agitação?
What is the change that comes in the country when hundreds of thousands of people demonstrate? Is there any point to just [criticize and] say that the path [to follow] is “not that way”? If politicians do not hear, then why should one waste a day shouting? And which alternatives and proposals do protesters have? Those who organize demonstrations should be made responsible for the situations of violence? Or is violence the possible answer to the state that we have reached? Does the police use undercover agents to “agitate”?
Aiming at “helping to create political, economic and social alternatives to the austerity”, the debate, moderated by journalist São José Almeida, will bring together the main collectives that have mobilized massive protests in Portugal in the last years to share the “defeats, achievements and challenges to the current ways of protesting”. Guests include members of the Geração à Rasca (“Scraping-By” Generation) protest that started the March 12 Movement back in 2011, Plataform October 15, Screw Troika!, and also the trade union federation CGTP (General Confederation of the Portuguese Workers). More activities hosted by Academia Cidadã are planned until November 16.