protesta extrema desnudo

PLATAFORMA DE ANÁLISIS POLÍTICO LIBERAL


“En la calle, el resplandor decae sensiblemente como si una delgada cortina hubiera sido corrida en silencio.”    Salvador Garmendia (Barquisimeto, Venezuela, 1928)

Es fácil predicar sobre las desventajas de la violencia como herramienta política, sobremanera cuando hay sólidos argumentos éticos y políticos a favor de las alternativas de lucha no-violenta o de resistencia pacífica. Pero uno tiene que haber estado en una confrontación colectiva con la policía, en una danza de piedras, insultos, gases lacrimógenos, arremetidas y huidas, para saber también de qué va el hechizo que se vive en esos momentos.

El juego de los riesgos, las escaramuzas, las cadenas improvisadas de acarreo de piedras atención a los asfixiados, el paso de una ilusión de vanguardia al retroceso circunstancial, y la vuelta del deseo febril de regresar a la línea de fuego. Hay placer en poder escapar de las fauces policiales, con pocos segundos de diferencia entre el tormento de golpes, porrazos, perdigones, torturas y la sensación de sentirte a salvo en la frontera del miedo y del dolor. Es la ilusión de estar peleando la batalla decisiva contra las fuerzas de la oscuridad, contra unos esbirros del poder que conviertes en la representación física de muchas ideas deleznables.

La adrenalina te droga. El teatro de la guerra te convierte en un héroe fugaz. El escape de la boca del volcán te hace reír, temblando, con el regocijo enfermizo que produce la certeza de la fragilidad y el alcance de las rendijas por las que ocurre el escape. El ardor del humo tóxico te seduce y te asfixia como si fuera una metáfora del amor: te embriaga, te intoxica, te enferma y te salva, y todo al mismo tiempo. Es fácil predicar sobre la inocuidad de estas trifulcas… sobre todo cuando no las has vivido.

Pros y contras de las tácticas de protesta violenta

Vivimos tiempos en que se ha globalizado la polarización política, y esta suele ser un combustible muy efectivo para el extremismo. Cuando nos polarizamos, el conflicto político comienza a expresarse como una guerra entre sistemas de valores morales que se ven a sí mismos como irreconciliables. En esta guerra, los ciudadanos se aglutinan en bloques que se oponen de manera radical y ven el juego como el anhelo del exterminio del rival, o la hegemonía cultural de una visión, que se pretende moralmente superior, sobre las visiones alternativas. La guerra comienza en el lenguaje, en cultivo del odio, en la descalificación de cualquier otro bando. Recientemente hemos visto elecciones que expresan esta polarización, que muestran cómo la política es empujada hacia la guerra.

El Brexit fue aprobado con 52% contra48% de los votos. Aunque Donald Trump dominó los colegios electorales, el voto popular fue de 48,2% para Hillary Clinton y 46,1% para Trump. En las recientes elecciones de Ecuador, el candidato oficialista se impuso con 51,2% de los votos vs 48,8 para el candidato opositor. En el más reciente ejemplo, el presidente de Turquía, Tayyip Erdoğan, se impuso en un referéndum para expandir el poder presidencial con el 51,4% de los votos a favor vs 48,6% en contra.

En la mayoría de estos casos, la polarización política parece generar cajas de resonancia para estrategias de acción directa, por parte de los grupos que se oponen a gobiernos tiránicos o a ciertas mezclas de políticas, y estrategias de represión de la disidencia, por parte de aquellos gobiernos. En el juego político existe un equilibrio en el cual los rivales adoptan estrategias que implican un grado relevante de violencia, y sabemos que el resultado conjunto de este equilibrio es socialmente sub-óptimo. La coalición gobernante suele dominar con base en un alto grado de represión y las fuerzas dominadas buscan llevar a cabo acciones de resistencia y sensibilización, que son a menudo estigmatizadas como terroristas o subversivas.

Pero también existe otro equilibrio, en el cual el jugador con menos poder de coacción se desvía deliberadamente de la estrategia violenta, y lleva a cabo un tipo de acción directa pacífica, como las acciones de desobediencia civil, manifestaciones, huelgas, resistencia pasiva o boicots no violentos. Esta desviación unilateral puede entonces incrementar el costo de la estrategia violenta del jugador que acumula más poder (reduciendo el valor estratégico de la represión y las fuerzas de choque).

Venezuela, en Sudamérica, es un caso elocuente de estos juegos. Durante años se ha alimentado un proceso de polarización, de convencimiento de la supremacía moral de un bloque político sobre otro. En la medida en que la crisis económica y social ha erosionado la base electoral del gobierno, el bloque dominante, el chavismo, ha optado por boicotear las vías de expresión democrática de las fuerzas opositoras. Cuando esto ocurre, la expresión política es empujada hacia la acción directa. Pero hay argumentos robustos a favor de la acción directa pacífica o no-extrema.

Para analizarlas ventajas y desventajas del uso de tácticas de protesta no-extremas, quiero partir de un papel de trabajo (working paper) dado a conocer en febrero de 2017, por los profesores Robb Willer, del departamento de sociología de Stanford, y Matthew Feinberg y Chloe Kovacheff, de la escuela de negocios de la Universidad de Toronto. Este trabajo se titula “Las tácticas extremas de protesta reducen el apoyo popular de los movimientos sociales“. Estos investigadores se propusieron analizar cuáles son los efectos del uso de tácticas extremas, como medios para alcanzar los típicos objetivos de los movimientos que luchan por realinear las estructuras de poder de la sociedad.

El análisis de Feinberg, Willer y Kovacheff (2017) toma como punto de partida Alos hallazgos de investigaciones previas que encuentran que los activistas y dirigentes de los movimientos sociales suelen coincidir en dos grandes metas u objetivos:

  1. Se busca atraer la atención del público hacia la causa, como la vía para crear conciencia y preocupación sobre los problemas que se pretende solucionar; y
  2. Se necesita reclutar el mayor volumen posible de apoyo popular para la causa.

A partir de la realización de una serie de experimentos, Feinberg, Willer y Kovacheff (2017) encuentran soporte para la hipótesis de que los activistas enfrentan un importante dilema (o trade-off) en relación con el uso de tácticas extremistas de protesta. Por una parte, estas tácticas ayudan a los activistas a alcanzar la meta N° 1, en tanto la violencia es efectiva para atraer la atención del público (el sensacionalismo es un típico imán de la atención); pero por la otra, estas tácticas también reducen el apoyo del público a la causa y su disposición a sumarse al activismo en pro de esta (aleja de la meta N° 2), debido a que las tácticas extremistas erosionan la identificación del público con el movimiento social que las lleva a cabo.

Siguiendo la lógica propuesta por estos autores, una vez que las tácticas violentas permitieron alcanzar un grado relevante de conciencia o preocupación sobre la causa que impulsa al movimiento social, la misma violencia comienza a conspirar contra la suma de apoyos adicionales, provenientes de los segmentos inicialmente indiferentes o de las deserciones del bando contrario. Por una parte, muchas personas dentro universo que se desea conquistar sufren los efectos directos de las tácticas violentas (ej., pérdida de tiempo, destrucción de bienes propios, daños a la salud, mayor dificultad para acceder a alimentos o servicios públicos). Por otra parte, la preferencia por tácticas violentas es una señal del grado de autoritarismo de los movimientos sociales que las llevan a cabo.

Como decíamos antes, el conflicto político que se observa en Venezuela en el primer semestre de 2017 se ofrece como una evidencia tan cruda como actual de este dilema. La difícil coyuntura económica, alimentada por una mezcla disfuncional de políticas públicas, ha reducido drásticamente el apoyo popular del bloque gobernante. La respuesta de las facciones en el gobierno ha sido buscar maneras de empujar a la oposición a la violencia, para que esto justifique la represión, la concentración de poderes y el consecuente cerco institucional de la oposición política.

La oposición, por su parte, ha llevado adelante un conjunto de protestas para colocar su causa en la opinión pública local e internacional, pero pareciera que es el momento de controlar la violencia (ej., enfrentamientos callejeros, saqueos y destrozos de bienes públicos) para lograr el siguiente y decisivo objetivo: conquistar el apoyo de sectores moderados del oficialismo y de los segmentos de la población que han permanecido relativamente neutrales. Quisiera creer que esta conciencia está marcándolos pasos de la estrategia de la oposición venezolana.

– Pavel Gómez – 21-4-2017

http://pavelgomez.com/ventajas-y-desventajas-de-las-tacticas-extremas-de-protesta/

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