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I have no doubt that blog readers have been following the student protests about the proposed tuition fee hike and plan to end the EMA closely (indeed many of you may well have taken part).

The issue raises all sorts of questions about the state of democracy in the UK.

The head of the Met Police has essentially said that the Nov 24 rally was a game changer and that the police would now act - a concession that the police were not prepared for the first wave of protests two weeks previously.

But what does this mean? In the future does it mean that schoolchildren should bring sandwiches and a flask of tea the next time they set out to protest peacefully about their future? Is being kettled for nine hours on a school night the norm? Should peaceful protesters of all kinds now expect to become familiar with being charged at by police horses? See the link here which has just gone live on YouTube today. Should young graduates be burdened with tens of thousands of pounds of debt because of the way bankers were “creative” with financial instruments and gambled with global finances?

The protests are a ripe source of material and I would strongly encourage students to roll their opinions, backed up by argument, into their answers to questions on related topics.

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Politics