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Is Activism Good or Bad: Debating the pros and cons

Many people wonder is activism good or bad. Many different opinions exist on this subject, but we agree that they significantly impact our society and world.

They work tirelessly to change the world, whether big or small, because they believe that activism will ultimately help create a better future for everyone. Although their intentions may not always be clear to others, even those who don’t support them still acknowledge their importance as catalysts of change.

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Why Activism is Good

Activism is a great way to change the world, but it can also be dangerous

They have been fighting for civil rights, the environment, and animal welfare ever since the 1960s. Activists hold awareness campaigns and rallies to raise public awareness about these issues. There is much controversy over whether they are nasty or good for society, but I believe they must bring attention to important causes that need our help.

Activists don’t fit into one mold

They’re not just one thing. Activists are the people who care enough to stand up for what they believe in and fight for their ideals. And sometimes, that means fighting against what you disagree with. You might be an activist if you marched on Washington, participated in a boycott of your favorite store, or even if you have tried to raise awareness about a cause close to your heart by sharing information with others through social media.

Activist bravery yields many benefits

Activists are a bunch of people that do something, usually in the name of a cause. Whether marching for climate change or writing letters to lawmakers, they want to impact society and bring about change. They can be good or bad, depending on who you ask. Some people think they’re heroes, while others despise them because they don’t like their tactics.

Are activists good or bad

Why Activism Can be Bad

Activism is a mixed bag

They can be good, wrong, or just misguided. This is why it’s essential to look at the bigger picture when approaching an activist movement and not blindly follow. From slavery abolition to women’s suffrage movements to Black Lives Matter, activists have had their hand in some of history’s most monumental moments for better or worse.

Activists can be misguided by bias

They believe that they help the world with their actions and cause a change in the world. But this is not always true. Activists can be wrong for society, especially if they don’t know what they’re doing or care about it at all.

Well, there’s no way to tell since everyone has different opinions on them. However, we thought it would be helpful to list some qualities of wrong activists so that when you see one of these types of people out there in the world, you’ll know better than to get involved with them!

  • Lazy
  • Inexperienced
  • Uneducated
  • Bangwagon jumper
  • Shallow

The question of how activists should act is one that we can be debate endlessly. One thing is sure: everyone has an opinion on the matter. Some say they are fighting for a good cause, while others disagree with their methods and think they’re doing more harm than good.

Is activism good or bad

Good and Bad Activism Examples

Strap yourselves in because we’re about to go on a historical ride and look at some of the good and bad activist groups throughout history.

The Suffragettes

Suffragette’s tactics were many and varied. Some suffragettes chained themselves to railings outside parliament buildings, while others refused meals until they could vote. But these weren’t their only methods – several more violent activists took direct action against government property and people. Several women even bombed post-boxes, which had plates displaying King Edward VII’s face on them painted pink! The most famous act by a suffragette was when Emily Davison threw herself onto the tracks at the Derby in front of King George V’s horse. She got trampled to death, and it is still hotly debated whether she did this intentionally or not.

The Suffragists

You might be confused by what I’m saying here, so let me set things straight: the suffragettes were a militant offshoot of the leading group, called the suffragists. Both groups had similar goals but different ways of achieving them – whereas the suffragists were peaceful, their more radical counterparts used violent protests to attract attention from politicians. At least they made one thing clear: men are jerks.

The Suffragists (Again)

It seems we’re full circle now that we’ve reached suffragettes vs. suffragists again. This time, let’s focus on how both groups made a real impact in society by pushing women’s rights issues into mainstream consciousness – but while one group did it honestly, the other was pretty sneaky with their methods.


While you might not be familiar with this name, I’d be willing to bet that you’ve heard of their best-known tactic: the sit-in. ACT UP’s activists would take over important buildings, block traffic, or occupy government offices to get their point across – and it worked! The charity still exists in various parts of the world, though its tactics are slightly more subtle these days.


See? Subtlety is better. While this group used similar methods to the ones above, they made sure that no one could argue against the fact that they weren’t hurting anyone basically by causing a massive crash on Wall Street. They didn’t even break any people directly – just triggered a chain reaction from all those poor suckers who took out bad loans during

Earth First

Earth First’s activists don’t have a problem with causing destruction actually to make a point. Their solution is ‘direct action’ – meaning that they’ll do whatever it takes to stop environmentally destructive practices. They’ve even built treehouses at sites of development that were about to get bulldozed down to prevent them! To them, humanity is the greatest threat to the environment.

Pussy Riot/ FEMEN

Though these female-only activist groups have similar goals – to fight sexism in society through direct action – they take very different approaches. The ladies from FEMEN might be known for their naked stunts (which are pretty funny ). Still, we’re going to focus on the Russian punk band Pussy Riot. They use music as an outlet for political unrest rather than nudity, mostly because I can’t find any good pictures of them naked! Their song ‘Putin Zassal’ is an anti-Putin diss track, and they were imprisoned in 2012 after protesting at a Russian church (they’re all free now, though).

Al-Fatiha Foundation

However, unlike some of these other groups who used specific methods to get their point across, this charity is trying to change the law through peaceful protests and petitions by campaigning for gay rights in Muslim countries. One of their most extensive campaigns is promoting tolerance within Islamic organizations towards members who are LGBT – so if you’re religious and gay or lesbian, please, check them out! They also hold workshops and conferences worldwide to raise awareness about homosexuality and Islam, focusing on reconciling both lifestyles.

Yemen Cyber Revolution Movement

Hackers exploded online in 2011 when they took part in the revolution against President Ali Abdullah Saleh, ruling Yemen since 1978. The movement was spearheaded by a group called Coalition of Youth Tawakel Karman (CYT), which encouraged people to participate in peaceful protests. However, CYT decided to use the internet as another tool alongside traditional demonstrations, making several YouTube videos asking Saleh to step down so that he could no longer cause these issues within Yemen. It worked, too – Saleh soon signed an agreement with other political groups to leave Yemen in 2012. 

Occupy London Stock Exchange (OLSX)

In an attempt to raise awareness of the unfair treatment of women by many financial institutions, a group called OLSX – short for the Occupy London Stock Exchange movement – decided to stage a protest at St Paul’s Cathedral in London on International Women’s Day 2014 and hang bras from the ceiling… as well as directing a pagan ‘Witches Sabbath’ outside Parliament while women paraded through the streets. They even released this cheeky little YouTube video about it! For some reason, though, they get widely criticized for being middle-class white girls pretending that they had problems when millions of other women out there are struggling to survive. But you know what they say: you can’t win them all.

FEMEN France

Another group of ladies who prefer nudity over violence, FEMEN France, have been demonstrating against religion within the country for a few years now… though their methods have changed with time. For example, in this performance piece from 2014, four women removed their clothes and held up crucifixes while shouting, “In gay we trust!” However, unlike Pussy Riot’s protests which have gone viral online thanks to clever editing techniques, FEMEN France’s stunts often fail because people on the street don’t seem particularly interested – except in this case when three protesters stripped off to reveal nothing but sandals and bared their bottoms as they shouted slogans about Israel, Gaza, and Egypt.


Activism is often seen as a way to make a change, but it also has its drawbacks. For example, in the era of Trump’s presidency, many activists may have forgotten that they are still part of the system and need to work within it for any real progress. Activists can get caught up in their own anger or frustration with the system at times and lose sight of what needs to be done next – which could lead them down an unproductive path. That doesn’t mean activism isn’t worth doing! It just means you should keep these pros and cons in mind when deciding whether or not this avenue will help your goals.

Viable Outreach | Activism for the 99%