Moral Outrage
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Guy Fawkes mask inspires Occupy and Anonymous movements around the world

Generations of Britons have grown up pledging to “Remember remember the fifth of November: Gunpowder, treason and plot” — the figure of Guy Fawkes linked forever with fireworks, bonfires and childhood fun.

Now — more than four hundred years after the gruesome death of the man who plotted to blow up the Houses of Parliament with barrels of gunpowder — members of the Occupy and Anonymous movements, wearing the sinister black and white Guy Fawkes masks, plan to march on Parliament in central London. The march will recreate one of the final scenes of “V for Vendetta,” a film about a mysterious masked revolutionary who brings down a totalitarian regime, succeeding where Fawkes failed by blowing up parliament.

The Guy Fawkes mask, worn by V, the film’s protagonist — with its diabolical grin, devilish black moustache and thin goatee on a porcelain white background — has become the talisman of a new generation of activists as an unprecedented wave of disgust and anger with establishment figures has swept the world.

The mask was first embraced by international hacker ring Anonymous in 2008. Malcolm, a 44-year-old Anonymous member and camper, says the mask has become “an international symbol for rebellion and anonymity.” With a grin, he adds, “As they say — Guy Fawkes was the only man ever to enter Parliament with honest intentions.”

[Excerpts of a CNN article by Nick Thompson]

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One Response to “Guy Fawkes mask inspires Occupy and Anonymous movements around the world”

  1. V for Vendetta creator Alan Moore discussed his famous Guy Fawkes mask, in an interview for The Guardian. As it turns out, he’s pretty happy with the way his creation has manifested itself in the real world.

    Moore: “I suppose when I was writing V for Vendetta I would in my secret heart of hearts have thought: wouldn’t it be great if these ideas actually made an impact? So when you start to see that idle fantasy intrude on the regular world… It’s peculiar. It feels like a character I created 30 years ago has somehow escaped the realm of fiction.”

    Moore also appreciates that the mask “turns protests into performances,” and that unlike in traditional protests, the 99% appear to be having a good time.

    “That sends out a tremendous message,” Moore said.


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