Squabbling out of Fear in Egypt

Egyptians are supposed to be fighting for a constitution that will serve all its citizens–men and women; Muslims, Christians and Bahais; conservatives and liberals. In the process of Morsi’s power-grab and his rush to have Egyptians approve a constitution that by and large gives too much power to the state, favors Islamic Law, and leaves Egypt’s citizens to vulnerable to abuses by the authorities through several loopholes, all parties have become paranoid. People should focus on approving a constitution that limits the powers of the state, interior ministry, etc–which affects all Egyptians.

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Instead Egyptians are squabbling amid the chaos of demonstrations, worrying about if the constitution is shariah-compliant, against Copts, misogynist, etc. It’s all these things if only to maintain the status quo, rather than target certain groups. After all the present constitution is–by and large–a copy of its predecessor during the days of Mubarak and Sadat.

The dumbed down debate is the result constant fear mongering among Egypt’s religious and liberal zealots. Wake up, vote no, and frame a constructive counter narrative that can unite Egypt’s citizens, i.e. stop the fear mongering! This is unfortunately unlikely, since in a country which is not used to voting but rather approving at referenda and elections, around 80 percent of Egyptians are believed to approve the drafted constitution. The struggle continues.

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