Demonstrations against the verdict have rocked university campuses around the country. The state media tend to blame the Muslim Brotherhood for all demonstrations these days, but secular supporters of the 2011 uprising are also taking to the streets.
As I noted in my first reaction over the weekend, the growing sense that the last visible gains of the Arab Spring are disappearing one by one may mean that, if the economy continues to deteriorate and human rights violations remain unaddressed, there could be a new explosion. I fear that the government has a window of opportunity to show it is actually able to improve people's lives, restore Parliamentary life, and deliver on its other promises. That window is not unlimited.
I am reminded by a famous poem by the Harlem Renaissance poet Langston Hughes, "A Dream Deferred":
What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry uplike a raisin in the sun?Or fester like a sore—And then run?Does it stink like rotten meat?Or crust and sugar over—like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sagslike a heavy load.
Or does it explode?