On Tuesday night, to coincide with Guy Fawkes Day protesters wore Guy Fawkes masks and took to the streets of London to protest against corruption in the political system.
Wearing Guy Fawkes masks, more recently associated with the Occupy Movement and the ‘hacktivist’ group Anonymous, protesters marched through Parliament Square finally assembling outside of Buckingham Palace, where fireworks were launched at the walls and the roof. A bonfire was also organised by members of the People’s Assembly, a group who protest against austerity, where energy bills were burnt in protest to the rising cost of fuel.
Although London hosted one of the largest protests of the march, this was a global campaign, with over 400 cities taking part worldwide. Each cities message differed slightly, with protests against mass surveillance in Washington and for the awareness of environmental issues in Japan, cleaning up the streets as they went, but the general message remained the same, a march against political corruption, capitalism, austerity measures and the global dominance of the banks.
However, the demands remain unclear as one member of the march in Australia told ABC news "There’s so much that goes on in our world, and with Anonymous, because there’s so many of us, it’s really hard to have an orderly or structured discussion, rally or march on one point. So it’s probably best that we just incorporate all of them.” However, it does seem that some in the groupbelieve that demanding and negotiation directed at governments would suggest that they see governments as legitimate, a legitimacy which many in the group don’t believe the state has. But, there do seem to be some general demands in play, including: a move to a resource based economy in replacement of the monetary system, and a change to direct democracy in replacement of the representative democracy we currently have.
Many members of the march have complained after little media cover was given to the march, which they claimed involved thousands of protesters. However, news reports vary, with the BBC reporting ‘hundreds’ in attendance compared to RT ‘over 1000’. Russell Brand was reported to have been there, also, in support of his views expressed in the recent interview with Jeremy Paxman.