Protesting in Lebanon

This seems to me one of the more interesting protests going on around the planet at the moment:

I remember bumping into this in history class. You have, e.g., the Ottoman-era millet system which set different legal codes for those officially affiliated with particular regions, and then there's the current approach in Lebanese politics:

Lebanon’s power-sharing system based on 18 recognized religious sects dates back to French colonial rule, allocating posts for each of the country’s communities and forming the basis of its major political parties.

An illustration of what this looks like (courtesy Wikipedia since I couldn't quite remember what the exact allocations were):

The 1943 National Pact, an unwritten agreement that established the political foundations of modern Lebanon, allocated political power on an essentially confessional system based on the 1932 census. Seats in parliament were divided on a 6-to-5 ratio of Christians to Muslims, until 1990 when the ratio changed to half and half. Positions in the government bureaucracy are allocated on a similar basis. The pact also by custom allocated public offices along religious lines, with the top three positions in the ruling "troika" distributed as follows:

  • The President, a Maronite Christian.
  • The Speaker of the Parliament, a Shi'a Muslim.
  • The Prime Minister, a Sunni Muslim.

The lesser the extent to which you can guess what group someone falls into the easier it seems likely to change. The Lebanese case in a way is anti-identity-politics but doesn't quite map to more-commonly-discussed instances of the same.