Our Dear Europe! Don't give up Hope"
Our Dear Europe! Don’t give up Hope!
As we all are aware our dear Europe is “scattering”. The United Kingdom wants just the common market for the British business, Denmark wants to “plunder” the refugee, new walls and other barriers are elected in the heart of Europe, in Poland media are “bridled” with law, several EU national governments decide unilaterally to close the border, EU governments’ raise attack on the Brussels to “cover” mistakes or political weakness and incapacities in their own countries, pandering more and more to national interests for electoral reasons and prevailing over a European interest where also legitimate national interests can be satisfied. And as a New Year gift the EU Council has shattered one of our most fascinating dreams promoting the suspension of Schengen.
We are not naïve and are aware of the epoch-making challenges that we are facing, with the mitigation’s tragedies being emblematic.
However, we thought that the European states needed to work together in the European Union also to face the particular challenges; unfortunately, on the contrary when facing difficulties they scatter. No surprise if the citizens’ confidence in a united Europe is vanishing.
It is difficult for them to understand what this Europe is doing. They are disoriented and lost. Unfortunately we need to realize that also many media instead of being constructive preferred to play with the problems.
Even if the said list is longer, we don’t want to get discouraged and need to keep up to help in the future of a united Europe, doing all we can to keep the European flame alive, especially in the youth.
The 2015 EJ International Congress in Budapest has already expressed concerns, with some inputs about the present EU situation and its future.
Nevertheless, in light of most recent events, we want to come out with new statements.
In the following we report refection from our ExCom and EJ member ad further statement will follow
Do not blame the locomotive If train carriages develop malfunctions!
EJ will not join the list of lost hopes in the European Project
EJ Executive Committee member
The EU has weathered many storms in the past but the current tempest is of an unprecedented magnitude.
The earlier spirit of "all for one, one for all" has given way to a mindset of "every member state for itself", in total defiance of the entire body of legislation ratified by the EU since its inception, to which all member states must adhere.
Brussels has become the universal scapegoat but it is only the sum of its parts. If train carriages develop malfunctions is the locomotive to blame ? There is however some hope that the current "scattering" will not lead to an eventual breakaway.
Constant negative or spiteful hype from the media only makes things worse and does not help restore citizens' confidence, it only undermines it further.
Measures such as the suspension of the Schengen agreement will hopefully be temporary and we can reasonably assume that politicians will, for once, put aside their electoral preoccupations and recover some common sense, preserving all earlier achievements of the EU.
We must remain constructive and confident to overcome the present deadlock : like all past storms, this one will abate in the not too distant future.
The EU dream should not be affected dramatically by present conditions and should not be allowed to join the list of lost hopes.
The European Union is not a musical request program!
There is no alternative for the big EU achievement
The European Union is not a musical request program, where one can choose only the best pieces. The EU is – as well as every member state – rather a mutually supportive group, where the weak are supposed to be helped by the strong.
Treaties on which one has been suited once must be kept. And if one believes that they do not correspond any more to the topical occurrences, one must come to an agreement by the majority about a change. Extortions like those of the British Prime minister are not a solution and not a democratic state worthy.
Nobody was prepared for the refugee's crisis, although it did not come unexpectedly. However, instead of looking all together after a solution – how it would have been usual in a big family like the EU –, everybody has cooked his own soup. The result is one single pile of smashed crockery.
However, in spite of all drama, it would be wrong to meet trouble halfway and to forecast the close end of the EU. We should rather use the topical crisis to make clear again to ourselves the many advantages of the EU. And we must realize once more that they are not natural.
This is our obligation not only towards the founder's fathers of the EU. But also towards all those who have fought in the past and who are still fighting for the European Union.
There is no alternative for this big achievement. And therefore it is our damned duty and obligation to do everything so that our children and grandchildren can further live in peace and security - as we have promised it to them.
Sadness for the Lost Values of our EU Founding Fathes!
Not just economic entity, but “transcendent dignity”
Crises thrust humanity into periods of reflection and regeneration.
2015 was not a good year for the EU or for European values, my good friends Jack and Fernanda Hanning write from Strasburg.
Do not blame the locomotive if train carriages develop malfunctions! EJ will not join the list of lost hopes in the European Project, adds our colleague and friend Jacques Campé from Belgium, EJ Executive Committee member.
Our EJ Treasurer, Marc Willière, remarks on solidarity, stating that the European Union is not a musical request program, where one can choose only the best pieces. The EU is – as well as every member state – rather a mutually supportive group, where the weak are supposed to be helped by the strong.
Are we losing sight of the aims which should direct our way in the EU?
We believe that in the new disparate Europe of today and equally so in a more globalised world, the knowledge, the dialogue and the coming together of the various cultures are of crucial importance.
In this meeting we find the human person in all his/her dimensions, viewed not just as an economic entity, but with a “transcendent dignity”, the focal point of all values, everywhere in the universe and always throughout the centuries. Personal freedom, supreme dignity in a world of justice, solidarity and peace, equality among all human beings, the promotion of all forms of openness to all, as brothers and sisters, respect for diversity and for individuals and groups who think or believe differently, deep sense of belonging to a common intellectual and spiritual tradition, flow from this vision of the human person.
Due to the “transcendent” personal dignity these all are fundamental and inviolable rights, beyond any religious, social or philosophical interpretation or dependence, as a common anthropological, cultural and ethical heritage.
Looking at the terrible human tragedy of so many migrants - vulnerable human beings who having been fleeced and cast adrift on unforgiving waves are now buried in the depths of the sea, while the “fortunate” survivors, searching for a new life and a fundamental freedom, find themselves not liberated, but humiliated and treated like lepers at the borders of many countries -, we ask: where is the solidarity of the European Union, which was a fundamental pillar of our founding fathers? Lest we forget many successful global individuals such as the great Graca Machal, founding member of the Elders and international advocate for women’s and children’s rights and widow of Nelson Mandela, was herself once a terrified migrant refugee who sought and was given sanctuary.
To close the eyes of conscience and shut down borders, when real and present dangers exist for the person, not only offends the “transcending dignity”, present in every human being, it is also a form of criminality reminiscing the actions of bygone despots.
If history is “magistra vitae”, let’s take light and courage from our past.
After the fall of the Roman Empire in 476 AD, countless numbers of monks, philosophers, scholars and scribes, most of whom hailed from Ireland, brought a new wave of re-evangelization and moral-cultural renaissance to a Europe ravaged by barbaric invasions, droughts, decadence, and the disappearance of moral values. In time, the sophisticated efforts of the monks in advancing both re-evangelization and cultural re-vival generated a genuine spiritual improvement. It in turn produced a healing and civic reunification of almost the entire European continent.
The contribution made by St. Colomban, St. Gall, Marianus Scotus and other Irish monks to the various countries of Europe in which they toiled was so vast that it is almost incalculable. They were the most important actors in the growth of European cultural heritage.
The memory of the past should constitute the paideia for our future. I’m of the opinion that to consolidate and build the EU and the world of the UN upon solid basis, it is not enough to appeal only to a mere economic and commercial union or to purely economic interests, which, while they sometimes unite with ease, can, at other times, just as easily divide. To be worried about a loss of 0.4% in the PIL’s growth or on the tenure of the “Patto di stabilita’”, I prefer to side with the Italian Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, working for a “Pact of Humanity”. Thus, it is necessary to aim at authentic values, based upon the universal moral law, written in the heart of every human being and, therefore, upon an authentic spiritual, ethical and cultural unity, notwithstanding religious and ethnical differences.
Time has come to work together in building a Europe which revolves not around the economy, but around the sacredness of the human person, around inalienable values, the wisdom of Pope Francis when speaking to the Assembly of the European Parliament stated.
To rediscover the true values that characterized the cultures of our Countries, reaching their deep humanistic roots in a common dialogue of cultures, is the challenge which each one of us now finds placed before. A challenge which demands that we should all strive to bring a meaningful contribution to the building of the common European home and of a world of countries, united in the respect and promotion of the fundamental values of every human being, in whom a “transcendent dignity”, a “veritas”, “intimior intimo meo”, is present.
To promote culture and values, so dear to the Irish monks, among all the citizens of Europe and of the entire world and to create a feeling of solidarity and belonging to a common destiny, in front of which we are all equal in a universe of justice and peace, is our challenge in the European Union, the most fascinating, courageous and important political project of the last centuries.Our Dear Europe! Don’t give up Hope! tells us Paolo Magagnotti, EJ President