2012 and 2022, different stories28 February 2022
Fifteen members of TRYSPACES in Montreal co-authored and signed an open letter published in the newspaper Le Devoir on Saturday, February 26, on the topic of youth protest and mobilization. This text draws a comparative portrait between the realities of 2012 during the student strike in Quebec and the Maple Spring, and that of 2022, at the end of two years marked by a global pandemic and repeated confinements. A chilling comparison on the health of our collective projects.
Excerpt: “2012. There are 200,000 of us in the streets. The government has decided that it is now illegal to protest. The crowd is multi-colored and red with passion. We march, and we don’t back down, even in the face of the riot wall that ensnares us in a city that no longer wants to see us standing. Our social media allows us to link this struggle to all those that have shaken the great cities of the world for a year: the Arab springs, Athens, London, Santiago, Chile, Madrid… We are the fierce beasts of hope.
We are the youth who taste maple in a boiling cauldron, who develop their citizenship field training and who discover the taste of cayenne pepper. We are acting for our dream of a Quebec that has free education and emancipation of minds tattooed on its heart.
There are millions of us at home. It is springtime, in silence. We live in the anxiety of a return of curfew, in the anxiety of making an illegal move, in the anxiety of making subversive gestures without even knowing it, in the anxiety of coming together, in the anxiety of a solitude, in the anxiety of a crisis of the collective, in the anxiety and fatigue of speaking out and debating, in the anxiety of being associated with the wrong cause. The screens crush our daily lives and the digital overdose creates gaps and cleavages in a fragile society.”