|Twelve Cenz Stamp Revolution|
|Founder||Central University students|
|Affiliation||Blue Velvet Coalition|
|Location||Central City, Amestris|
|Purpose||Protestation of union monopoly reforms in Amestris|
|Symbol||Twelve Cenz Stamp|
|Form||Public demonstration |
|Opposition||Steel Mill Monopolies |
Fuhler Steel Company
|“||Our goal is not anarchy, nor is it the abdication of parliament. We seek to stand against the common injustices that have for so long slept under the idle eye of both the government and the people themselves. We ourselves are to blame for our mutual misery, and it is an abuse no longer tolerable by him who seeks to do right by his fellow man.||”|
The Twelve Cenz Stamp Revolution is a student protestation movement that arose in the wake of the economical reforms enacted by the parliament in Amestris. While mainly grassroots and nondenominational in nature, it was founded and is largely driven by the Blue Velvet Coalition, a small activist group from Central University whose general sentiment has become increasingly more aggressive towards the government in recent months. While no open belligerence has yet broken out, the “revolution” continues to gain followers and could easily pose a threat to Central’s security if events were to escalate.
After Grumman retired from office and appointed a new Führer to take his place, Mustang initiated a series of social and economic reforms in order to improve the common welfare in Amestris. However, his efforts were met with opposition from parliament, who had established several trade and labor unions in the country and wished to protect their own interests. A particular sore spot for those who supported Mustang was the Fuhler Steel Company, as despite being a union company Fuhler Steel was known for its high associate loan rates, which indebted its own workers to the company that employed them. Tension continued to build over the course of the next few years until finally overt opposition to Fuhler steel was sparked. Having discovered iron ore near Primsby in West Amestris, Fuhler Steel claimed the valley where the town was located by government mandate and evicted all of Primsby’s citizens in order to construct a small hydraulic dam for its mining operations. This prompted a strike from the residents of Primsby, who refused to leave their homes and blocked the roads that led to the dam’s construction site. Ultimately, Fuhler Steel requested government assistance, and a State Alchemist was sent to handle the incident. The protest was rapidly quelled and while there were no casualties, the injustice perpetrated by the government in the underhanded situation was easily seen, especially with those already dissatisfied with parliament’s nepotistic policies.
The ordeal in Primsby soon disappeared from news headlines and faded from the public mind, but the Blue Velvet Coalition was able to use the incident as a rallying point for other like-minded students in Central City in order to spur protest. Originally, the Coalition had been nothing more but a loose affiliation of political activists, mainly made up of law and political science students who frequently gathered to discuss current events in the political sphere at the Blue Velvet Pub, a small bar in Central after which the group had been named. However, after parliament implemented an economic reform bill that would allow companies like Fuhler Steel to become true monopolies, the organization became much more structured in order to oppose the reform laws. They began to write petitions to the government in order to repeal the reform bill, claiming that while the laws claimed superficially to protect union worker’s wages, in reality it was an excuse to legitimize collusion. In other words, the government was working to protect poor product quality and high consumer costs at the expense of an employee’s merit-based benefits.
Twelve Cenz Stamp Strike
Beginning in January of 1924, the government began to issue twelve-cenz revenue stamps in order to collect fees on all imported goods. Ostensibly this was to support railway and road expansion in Amestris as well as to make long-overdue war reparations in Aerugo. However, a portion of the profit would be reinvested into Amestrian union monopolies, such as the trade union, the labor union, and the Fuhler Steel Company. Recognizing the maneuver as a misappropriation of citizen funds, and having long grown tired of the economic reforms that only seemed to profit parliament and the unions, the Blue Velvet Coalition called for a boycott of the stamps. Soon the protest started to gain traction in the public mind, as the boycott brought the movement attention without inciting violence. Eventually, as its notoriety spread, the protest became most-easily identifiable by the stamp strike, and it became known as the “Twelve Cenz Stamp Revolution.”