I quadruple loved this article on Pakstani youth organizing to pick up garbage in their neighborhoods.
I really like their reasoning:
"...the students were inspired by the recent success of the lawyers’ movement, which used a national protest to press the government to reinstate the country’s chief justice, and their rush of public consciousness was irrepressible."
“The youth of Pakistan wants to change things,” said Shahram Azhar, the lead singer for Laal, a Pakistani rock band, reflecting an attitude that is typical of this rebellious younger generation.
“The reason the Taliban is ruling Swat,” he said referring to a valley north of Islamabad where Islamic extremists took control this year, “is because they are organized. We need to organize, too.”
“The only answer to Pakistan’s problems,” he added, “is a broad-based people’s movement.”
What they are up against:
"Actually, the problem was deeper. A long-term cycle of corrupt, weak governments interrupted by military coups has caused Pakistan’s political muscles to atrophy, leaving Pakistani society, particularly its poor, hopeless that it will ever receive the services — education, water, electricity, health — that it so desperately needs. "
“People say, ‘This is nice, but things will never change,’ ” Mr. Khwaja said, pointing to a hamburger seller who he said was particularly pessimistic. “There is a hopelessness.”
The divide they seek to bridge:
"That brought the students to the most serious discussion of the day, one that is arguably Pakistan’s biggest problem: the gap between rich and poor. Generations of poverty and a system of substandard education that keeps people in it have created fertile ground for Islamic militancy, which now poses a serious threat to the stability of the country."
Goooooooo Middle Class!!:
“The rich don’t care, the poor can’t do anything, so it’s up to the middle class to make the change,” Mr. Khwaja said, as a group of friends standing near him nodded in agreement. “We have to lead by example. To change it from inside.”