World News and Trends: Anglo-Americans protesting again

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Anglo-Americans protesting again

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Students across the Western world took to the streets with devastating consequences. These ranged from loss of life to expensive property damage—not to mention the tragic spectacle witnessed by audiences everywhere. Protesters' intentions can be peaceful and idealistic, but rank anarchists integrate themselves into these movements to instigate almost certain violence.

The primary focus of the latest protests was against global capitalism, with Seattle and London as the main target sites. The Daily Mail summed up the events of early December in Britain's capital city:

"Anarchists brought violence and terror to the streets of London for the second time in six months ... A demonstration against capitalism exploded into ferocious attacks on police which forced the closure of Euston station [one of London's principal railway passenger depots]. Police were pelted with bottles, stones and poles from banners. The mob, many of them masked, surrounded an empty transport police van ... [and] looted and overturned it and set it on fire. The crowd chanted, 'Burn it, burn it' and 'kill the pigs.' "

The scene shifted to Seattle, Washington, where world-trade talks were taking place. This particular protest movement was tarnished by ugly street violence and vandalism of buildings as police were forced to use tear gas to bring crowds under control.

Said The Seattle Post Intelligencer: "As the impassioned idealists in the army of protesters learned on Tuesday, there is nothing pretty about police power ... Protesters do what they have to do and police do what they are ordered to do. And harsh things are certain to happen. What we can all be grateful for is that police power in this city is wielded by some very decent men and women who refused to let themselves slip out of control."

The Bible is far from silent about protest movements that get out of hand. "You shall not follow a crowd to do evil," says Exodus 23:2 Exodus 23:2You shall not follow a multitude to do evil; neither shall you speak in a cause to decline after many to wrest judgment:
American King James Version×
. No one should allow himself to be led into wrongdoing by a mob, no matter how just the cause may seem to be. (Sources: The Seattle Post Intelligencer, The Seattle Times, The Daily Mail [London], The Sunday Telegraph [London], The Independent on Sunday [London].)