pirmdiena, 2010. gada 26. aprīlis

My Europe Week: United in diversity… Really???

United in diversity…

This is an official motto of European Union and kind of a guideline for „My Europe Week” blogging carnival.
Well, I was trying hard to somehow visualize My future Europe. And sadly, nothing optimistic comes in my mind…Why? Because such kind of unity IS NOT POSSIBLE, at least right now and at least in Europe…

I don’t remember exactly who told that, but European Union will destroy itself from the inside. And with every day I get more and more confident of that.

EU leaders have stated that the 27 country block should and will become the most powerful regional (regional organization?) in the world. However as the statistics show, nothing like this is likely to happen in the nearest future!

Yes, there is some kind of informal unity on the paper – it is the unity of „The Old Europe” and „The New Europe” or so called Post Soviet countries. Years pass and people change, but to Europe we are still those ex-Soviets so powerfully influenced by Russians that it is sometimes a surprise for Europeans to discover that we don’t live in trees, we have an electricity and we DO SPEAK in our own languages!

We are „united”… When Europe need us and we need them! However, when it comes to subsidies or financial help - unity fades away… Because again „The stomack is the highest God and everyone is the closest to himself” (Latvian Poet Eduards Veidenbaums). It is only natural to think of yourself first and only then consider helping others. It is only natural to consider if it is necessary to pay for the wealth of other nations by the cost of local citizens. But this is a coin with two sides – to help if it’s really necessary or to ask and take when you see the other side will give anyway!

We are united in „diversity”… Diversity is no conjunctive factor at all..

ETHNIC DIVERSITY? I guess every European country has some ethnic minority which thinks is discriminated and because of this some problems with neighbors occur. Russians in Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania; Polish in Lithuania, Lithuanians in Poland; Germans in Poland, Polish in Germany; Roma or Turks, or Kurds in many countries… I could continue and continue and I guess it is worth a whole study about all the nationalities living in one country and actually „belonging” to another in their hearts…
One thing is historical past, but EU has created it’s own historical phenomenon – guest workers! Sure…. Equal opportunities to travel and work in any European country is a huge advantage! However, it’s not so shiny as it looks! Come on – it is necessary to admit that not all of the countries are so keen to see more and more people coming and taking away THEIR jobs… (Especially when local unemployment is so high) Yes, sometimes those people do jobs the locals just don’t want to do! But dislike stays… And it is not only in countries who have sheltered my fellow countrymen. Everybody is aware that in a case the financial situation will improve people from other countries may come here as well.. And believe me – nobody wants to see them here much! Well, maybe except businessmen, who can get some profit from that!

RELIGIOUS „DIVERSITY”? It is really tough theme and I might not be objective here, but I don’t want to offend anyone! Catholics vs Protestants, Christians vs Muslims.. Europe is kind of a Christian continent and these values dominate in almost all the countries! Well, differences between the confessions are maybe not so huge.. And then – Turkey has shown it’s interest to join EU! WOW!!! And then Europe becomes united – AGAINST diversity! And questions arise – do we need such a big Muslim country in our closed-Christian-democratic society? Is Turkey even Europe? Etc, etc… And then comes Belgium, who wants to be first in EU to ban Muslim headscarves, burkas, hijabs and so on… Women rights first (such clothing has oppressed women for thousands of years), security second (maybe a good argument – those Muslim terrorists will have no chance to hide bombs under those scarves)! What a good sign of unity! Dear Muslims – Europe is open for everyone, but you, terrorists are not very much welcome here! Sorry!
And one more thing that proves our „unity” for „religious diversity”… Yes, I am a journalist and I absolutely support the freedom of press. However I don’t think that freedom of word = permissiveness! That’s how I would describe prophet Mohammed’s cartoons in European press! Do such actions really stimulates unity? BULLSHIT! And in this case I’m on the side of Muslims and I’m ashamed that Lars Vilks have some roots in Latvia!

SEXUAL DIVERSITY? Also a very hard subject and I have my own opinion, but this is probably not the right place to discuss it! However we are talking about unity… There are (And I guess there will be) different attitudes towards sexual minorities in different countries. But again – how united we are when it comes to Democracy vs Religion (or non-religion)?

I don’t know, when we’ll be able to talk about a real unity in diversity! Probably – the generation or generations have to change.

But right now – I’m just one of those diverse Europeans who somehow still believes in the possibility of one united Europe, one European nation… I voted for that, I live here and I will…

2 komentāri:

  1. Hey there,

    Just to point out that "United In Diversity" is the slogan taken by the European Movement International to celebrate Europe Day on May 9th. This is not the slogan of My Europe Week. Our slogan is "Share Your Europe"

    Other then that good Post. You highlighted some interesting points.


  2. Yeah, while I don't agree with everything this post says, it does go to the heart of a very interesting question - what the EU, as opposed to 'Europe' actually *is*.

    Is it a pragmatic economic and political project, or is it something cultural?

    I actually cringe when I hear people invoking 'Europeanness' as if it was something special. And I get a cold chill whenever anyone proposes 'projects' designed to 'make us all feel more European'.

    For me, the EU is a rational solution to the problems posed by the concept of national sovereignty in a globalised world. Not that I want to dissolve national sovereignty into some sort of Europudding - far from it. As an Australian, I love Europe's cultural diversity.

    But the technical name for the model of international relations describing a world of purely sovereign states is "the anarchic model". We can do better than that.

    Which is why the EU will never be perfect (it will never be anywhere), but it beats what came before. Or would you prefer to go back to the Soviet Union?