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Paris Citizens Launch ‘Olympic Poop Protest’ to Highlight River Pollution and Criticize Government

Image Source: timesnownews.com

In response to the costly cleanup efforts of the River Seine, many frustrated citizens have united under the hashtag #JeChieDansLaSeineLe23Juin, translating to “I shit in the Seine on 23 June.” The movement gained momentum as numerous individuals expressed their discontent by planning to defecate in the river. However, these plans were thwarted when President Emmanuel Macron and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo canceled their announced swim in the Seine, citing “political reasons.”

A website with the slogan “They have plunged us into shit, it’s their turn to plunge into our shit” emerged, reflecting the anger and frustration of the populace. The anonymous creator of the website explained to Actu Paris the underlying reasons for the protest. “The problem is that all the resources that have been invested have not been to resolve all the social problems we have at the moment,” he stated. “We have the feeling of being abandoned. We see where their priority was.”

Over €1.4 billion (£1.2 billion) has been allocated to make the Seine safe for swimming, with plans for triathlon and open water swimming events. Despite this significant investment, a report released on Friday revealed that the water remains too polluted for safe swimming, just over five weeks before the first scheduled triathlon event. The report highlighted high levels of two types of fecal bacteria, including E.coli, failing to meet the standards set for the Games.

Protesters saw an opportunity when Macron and Hidalgo announced their intention to swim in the river to demonstrate its safety. This led to the organization of a mass-pooping event, with detailed plans circulating online, including maps and water-flow measurements to ensure that their feces would be present when the politicians swam. The protesters’ plans were disrupted by the cancellation of the swim, but the underlying anger remains palpable.

The controversy highlights the dissatisfaction with the prioritization of resources. Protesters argue that the funds used for the river cleanup should have been directed toward addressing pressing social issues. The movement underlines a broader sentiment of neglect and misplaced priorities, as citizens feel abandoned by their leaders amidst ongoing social challenges. The significant investment in the Seine’s cleanup, juxtaposed with the persistent pollution, has only fueled the anger and disillusionment among the French public.

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