Call me a bigot but I still hate those aliens.Despite the intergalactic triumph which made this three-day weekend possible, the United States doesn’t have an outstanding track record with revolutions. The standard procedure for unsuccessful rebellions is to sweep them under the rug of history in order to avoid humiliation. But some of these insurgencies are such colossal failures that they refuse to go away. The following are five astoundingly bad revolts of all sizes, from attempts to overthrow government to university building occupations. I’ve provided them as helpful lessons on what to avoid if you ever build your own insurgency.
5NYU Food Court Occupation
Lesson: Kids don’t know shit
In February of 2009, a group of politically minded and painfully optimistic university students occupied the NYU food court with a list of demands as convoluted as they were absurd. The demands ranged from a complete record of University expenditures including teacher and administration salaries to an in depth investigation of all war and genocide profiteers in Palestine. For anyone unfamiliar with geopolitics, that’s the equivalent of a child holding his breath until a parent is willing to free Tibet.
Source: Tim Pierce
“And amnesty for the incarcerated, asshole.”The students brought cameras to the revolt in anticipation, and possibly even hope that they would be forcibly removed from the food court by police. Unfortunately, the video they captured does nothing but reveal how ill prepared, self-entitled and ridiculous they were. At one point the videographer attempts to chase down an apathetic campus safety officer while screaming, “Do not use brutality!”
This video does more detriment to future protests than the invention of rubber bullets.
4Margot Fonteyn’s Panama Coup
Lesson: Don’t invite celebrities to your revolution
Technically this revolt happened in a U.S territory but with the recent surge in American celebrities meddling with world affairs, the lesson is valuable. In 1959, Fidel Castro and Roberto Arias, the son of a former Panamanian president, secretly plotted to overthrow the Panamanian government. The problem was that Arias brought his wife.
“Watch this, Roberto. Watch me. Watch me, Roberto. Are you watching?”World famous ballerina, Margot Fonteyn fell in love with the romance of the insurgency and candidly told all her friends about it, both in person and in letters. She explained how they would use her yacht to transport soldiers and guns or to decoy government boats away from the operation. Now, given the exhilaration she was feeling it’s possible that she could be forgiven for telling her friends about the secret plot, as long as one of these friends wasn’t the British Foreign Office minister, which he was.
“You see this face, Margot? You are making it sad.”The trouble with celebrities is that they hang out with celebrities. Foreign Office minister John Profumo told UK officials about the secret plot right around the time the whole coup spontaneously collapsed. It’s not clear how much of the blame for its failure rests squarely on the shoulders of Margot Fonteyn, suffice it to say she was as useless as a goddamn ballerina in a political uprising.