So the Arab street is rumbling! Look out. We are MAD now!
Maybe it is important to “let off steam”, as many commentators describe these events. The Jordanian constitution allows for freedom of assembly in paragraph 1 of article 16, which states that:
“Jordanians shall have the right to hold meetings within the limits of the law”.
Of course, the limits of the law are the rub. The public meetings law gives wide discretion to the governor to approve or reject public meetings, with no obligations to explain his decision. As might be imagined, most meetings are in fact rejected, and Yasser Abu Hillaleh rightly rips into this law that effectively drains that constitutional provision of its meaning.
The rationale is that demonstrations can get out of control, and riots at the beginning of the second intifada resulted in large scale vandalism in the Beqa’a refugee camp and in the affluent Abdoun neighborhood.
Today Omar Kullab at Al Anbat pointed out how disciplined the demonstrations have been, suggesting that the government should start treating people like grown ups. It seems obvious that if people are to riot, they will not wait for an approval from the governor. Hell, if I was in charge, I would force the parties to have demonstrations every day.I wonder what happened to freedom square.