I had not personally heard of this protest until I ran across it hidden on the bottom of a news company’s website. Once I had taken the chance to read about it, I was shocked that this was happening but not being heavily reported let alone mentioned..
A protest, referred to as the Yellow Vests Protests, began in May of this year in France, which originated with an online petition on change.org, started by a woman from the Seine-et-Marne department. By October the petition had over 300,000 signatures, which was then followed by the organization of massive protests by mid-November.
It is also worth mentioning that those who are participating in the movement also lean towards expressing their hatred for any politician or any would-be politician. The majority of the protestors in the movement come from those who are enduring very tight financial circumstances.
The movement has been described by some as populist, and those individuals involved have a general hatred for those that it considers the wealthy elite or establishment. Even so, the movement was primarily brought on by the rising of fuel costs, the increasingly high cost of living, and the claims that the burden of government funding is being put mainly on the working and middle class to endure.
The movement demands are that of lowering fuel taxes, reinstatement of the solitary tax on the wealthy, an increase in the current minimum wage, and the resignation of the current President of France.
The Yellow Vest was chosen as the official symbol of the movement, due to France, passing a law in 2008, requiring all motorists to have one of the highly visible yellow vests in their vehicles. The highly reflective vests were chosen as they are the most recognizable, obtainable, and inexpensive.
By early December, protesters across the rest of Europe and the Middle East have taken on the yellow vests as a form and symbol of their movements as well.
The protests have garnered supporters from across the entire political spectrum, and so far have only involved marches as well as blocking of fuel stations and roads. However, there are some reports of the protests taking a more hostile tone and turning into all-out riots, described as the most violent the country has seen since those of May 1968.
Had you heard of this movement before now?