Daily Archives: January 31, 2011

Moved by the protests in Egypt. A random JonBenet Ramsey thought. And Bryant and Katie discover the Internet

So like many of you, I’m sure, I watched and read a bit about the incredible protests going on in Egypt the last several days.
And what struck me is that this is different from the brave and bloody Iranian protests back in 2009, in that it didn’t follow a fraudulent election.
What most interests me about this event in Egypt, this tremendous display of courage and passion and anger by so many millions of oppressed people, is this: Why now?
What was it, finally that mobilized so many, to demand change, now? Protests have been going in Egypt for years, but nothing on this scale.
So what was it? What was the tipping point that made so many decide “enough was enough?” Was it the fall of Tunisia’s government? Was it simply too many people, hungry and unemployed and unwilling to sit idly by as democracy came to other places but not there?
I hope the Egyptian protesters are successful, and a tyrant like Mubarak is brought down. I hope this doesn’t end like the Iranian protests did, with thousands bloodied in the streets, and their dictator still in power.
Whatever the final spark was, it may lead to historic, wonderful change in a part of the world that needs as many democracies as it can get.

**This was brought to my attention on Twitter by two people who have SO much in common: Alyssa Milano and Roger Ebert (She’s a former child star turned sexpot actress, he’s a movie critic with a new prosthetic jaw! Please welcome to the podium…)
It’s a “Today” show clip from 1994, as Katie Couric and Bryant Gumbel first hear about something called the Internet. Pretty funny:

**So I was reading a story Sunday from last week’s New York Times Book Review, and it mentioned JonBenet Ramsey.
So it got me curious as to how old the little girl murdered in 1996, by a criminal still not caught, would be today.
And it turns out she’d turn 21 this year. That fact stunned me. Can’t believe it’s been that long.
And like the death of any 6-year-old, it remains an unspeakable tragedy.