When I see the chaos that’s been ensuing in Egypt over the past few weeks, including Monday’s killing of 51 Egyptians by the army currently controlling the government) my mind always flashes back to one image from that country’s remarkable spring of 2011.
It was a photo of a young man and an older man, standing together with their arms around each other in Tahrir Square. The expression on the young man’s face was pure joy and satisfaction; he and his generation had led a revolution few had thought possible.
The expression on the older man’s face was more like shock; he couldn’t believe after so many years that democracy was really coming to Egypt.
There was so much pure happiness coming from Egypt then, that few worried about how such a large population, faced with brand-new freedoms, would handle it.
It has gone disastrously. The first freely elected president was forcibly removed from office last week after only a year. There is really no government in Egpyt now; the hardliners want one thing, the Muslim Brotherhood another, and nobody seems to have any idea how to cobble together a leadership that will please everyone.
Part of me wonders if this is what the U.S. looked like in the early 1780s, after the war but before Washington was elected president.
Maybe this is just what the early days of democracy look like anywhere; millions of people overwhelmed with new freedoms that they want it all, immediately, until the growing pains begin to bubble to the surface and massive problems ensue.
No one has any idea how long Egypt will resemble a cauldron of anger and unhappiness. This is all part of the process, painful though it is.
You just hope some stability can come there soon. And that the faces of the two men I keep flashing back to get to smile again.
**So it’s wedding season (yay!), and while I have to say that my wife’s maid of honor Jodi did an outstanding job with her toast, she did not quite go to the extremes this bride did. Check out the Eminem-inspired performance by the bride’s sister here.
Very impressive (and looks like a cool spot for a wedding reception, too!)
**Finally, some more “Andy Murray wins Wimbledon” fallout Monday. First, there’s been quite a kerfuffle about how the British press basically forgot about Virginia Wade’s 1977 Wimbledon title, since all the headlines have been reading “British drought over,” etc.
My take: Cut them some slack; nobody’s forgetting Virginia Wade. She had a great championship run and any tennis fan knows the London tabloids are talking about the British men’s title drought.
Second, not sure how many of you follow these Taiwanese animator videos of great sporting events, but they’re usually pretty hilarious. I really enjoyed this one they knocked out Monday on Murray’s triumph…