As I write this blog, I am on my lunch break at work. My wife is at her job and both our young children are at $7/day daycare. We chose this arrangement so that we can both put money aside for our children's education. We do this because we want to be able to help our children out if and when they reach university.
I say "if" because statistically in Quebec, many children won't finish high school. If my children choose to go to university, I do expect that they will have to work for it. I believe that they will take their studies more seriously if they invest in it themselves. The money that we are putting aside will help, but we aren't going to hand it to them on a silver platter.
Our family philosophy aside, our ability to get to work and earn those dollars that we want to put aside for our kids is being directly threatened by the constant ebb and flow of protests in the city. The working class, many of whom -- such as myself -- did not go to university, are being drawn into this conflict whether they support the students or the government.
Some businesses downtown have laid off staff, cut back hours and simply don't pay employees who can't get to work because of a protest. I can't imagine that people affected in this way would offer much support to those preventing them from earning their wages.
The working class have a vote, just like everyone else. They also have the right to freedom of movement, just like everyone else. Those who have a complaint or a reason to protest do not have any more rights than everyone else. The working class expect that the authorities will intervene so that we can get to and from work without facing the threat of violence.
Do working class people have a say in these disruptions? We are affected, our taxes are affected and our livelihoods are affected. Is the red square more important than that?
Freedoms and rights are for everyone, not just those who believe that their cause is just.