Today, the Snapchat stories of all my Parisian friends have been quite insane - smoke bombs and firecrackers set off by protesters in Montparnasse, fire at the Louvre following a week of flooding, and general chaos in the streets (plus, Djokovic makes men's tennis history at Roland Garros!).
But, to the protests. These strikers have been at it for several weeks now - something that has annoyed me quite a bit (it's impossible to get around when the trains aren't running), though I've had to begrudge the protesters some admiration for their resolve and commitment to what they believe is right.
Even more admirable, however, is the fact that workers are able to conduct such ongoing and vocal dissent in such a spectacularly disruptive way. And while many people complain about the frequency of such demonstrations across the country, it does seem to be indisputably effective: France consistently ranks among the best countries for workers' rights. Just today following Montparnasse, government representatives met with strikers for nine hours to discuss their grievances regarding the disputed bill.
Meanwhile, the US falls into the second worst ranking for countries to be a worker. And I'm sure there are many varied reasons for this - but specifically I wonder, have we drifted toward a culture where people are simply less inclined to speak out against injustices?
... more on that later. For now, Ramadan Mubarak everyone. So tired today and gonna catch some sleep now.