This blog is intended to go along with Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, by John R. Weeks, published by Cengage Learning. The latest edition is the 12th (it came out in 2015), but this blog is meant to complement any edition of the book by showing the way in which demographic issues are regularly in the news.

If you are a user of my textbook and would like to suggest a blog post idea, please email me at: john.weeks@sdsu.edu

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Arab Spring Turns to Egyptian Thoughts of Springing

The hopes and high aspirations that most Egyptians had for a new government, a revived economy, and thus a better life have been heavily dampened by the military government's slow return of the government to the people after ousting President Morsi. In a scenario that seems not unlike what we've seen in Greece, the New York Times reports on the sentiment of many Egyptians that it is time to emigrate.
Egypt has surrendered citizens to more prosperous countries for generations, unable to provide much hope or opportunity at home. But like Mr. Hashem, many Egyptians who say they are joining a new exodus had been loath to give up on their country; some had postponed the urge to leave, hoping the uprising against President Hosni Mubarak in 2011 would pave the way to a better life. 
Their change of heart signals a dark moment. Many people said they saw no end to the conflict between the military and its Islamist opponents, and no place for those who did not profess loyalty to either one.
Now, to be sure, the reports of emigration are premature, but the intention seems clearly to be rising:
There is no statistical evidence that more people are emigrating, and the notion remains far from the reach of most Egyptians, reserved for those with the qualifications or connections to find opportunities abroad. In interviews over several days, though, people said their conversations had turned more frequently, and urgently, to leaving; those who considered travel possible were just deciding when.
And, of course, the point is that precipitating a brain drain of the best and the brightest--often those with the greatest chances of migrating--is no way to run a government. But, that's the whole problem, isn't it?

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