Arcade Fire Support Quebec Student Protests on Saturday Night Live, Join Likes of Michael Moore, Anonymous
When Arcade Fire backed Mick Jagger for three songs on Saturday Night Live last night (May 19), those red patches the band were wearing weren't fashion statements, but very pointed acts of protest in support of Quebec students who were quite literally setting fires in Montreal at the same time.
The Montreal-based band have clearly chosen a side in Quebec students' months-long fight with provincial government officials over tuition hikes and the province's new and very Big Brother law known as Bill 78 designed to snuff out protests. The red patches are one of the symbols of student resistance against these government measures.
The law, which has drawn criticism from civil rights advocates, prohibits protests of more than 50 people taking place without organizers checking in with police in advance, and threatens heavy fines against student leaders and student groups who organize protests. A related by-law just launched by the city prevents anyone at a protest from wearing a mask.
Predictably, free speech advocates besides Arcade Fire have been rallying to the students' cause.
"Canadians are in revolt in Quebec over new gov't law limiting democratic rights. No news of it in US press. Their uprising is inspiring #ggi," filmmaker Michael Moore tweeted early Sunday morning.
Meanwhile, hacker collective Anonymous has also weighed in on the students' side.
"Goodbye Quebec. Hello Quebecistan," was tweeted from the "Civil & Human rights activist" account on May 18. Perhaps not coincidentally, websites for Quebec's governing Liberal Party as well as