Protests are not a new phenomenon in Iran. They’ve flared up over the years — over election fraud, economic woes, civil liberties. But this time is different — an unprecedented revolution led by women, with support from men, encompassing a wide variety of grievances, all laid out in the heart-wrenching Persian lyrics of Shervin Hajipour’s song “Baraye,” or “Because of.” It’s become the anthem of the revolution, striking such a nerve around the world that backlash after Hajipour’s arrest led to his release.
This is a spontaneous civil rights movement made up of people at their wit’s end — unable to afford basic life necessities while forced to adhere to the oppressive rules of a religious autocracy that promised to take care of its people. What’s more dangerous than a mob with nothing to lose? See: The French Revolution.