Demanding the right to live for the east
There is no heaven on earth. All the world’s governments are engaged in their own negotiations; all the world’s governments are directly or indirectly responsible for lost lives near or far away from them, for undernourished souls, for people laying their heads on pavement stones instead of pillows... They all have their fingers in the pie.
The order is like this. Unless the order changes, it is difficult for this reality to change.
However, in some countries, in those places where democracy truly functions, there is something called the power of public opinion. In various decisions or actions, governments meet such a powerful public reaction that they take a step back. As a general rule, in all of Europe and those liberal democratic regimes, this is the situation; this is what is called responsive democracy. The political will cares about reactions.
Here, in our country, it does not.
This is so in femicides, violations of human rights, environmental issues and when freedoms are in question.
The work of rights activists is very difficult. Imagine the situation of volunteer legal experts, lawyers… They have to earn their own lives, they are activists and while working in this field they know that the political will responds minimally.
They do not give up.
We have a family and children to take care of; well, don’t they? Of course they do, but they do not make this an excuse…
We, as ordinary people of this country, owe quite a lot to a handful of rights activists and this debt is constantly increasing.
The latest is that while people in the southeast are living in a warlike climate, there is no voice heard in the West.
You do not need to judge, accuse anybody or side with anybody. You may think one side is correct and blame the other. Or you may think everybody is right or blame everybody. You are free to think whatever you wish. This has nothing to do with our basic issue. We are not politicians.
As the people or peoples of this country, as citizens of this country, our essential problem should be not accepting the fact that other citizens of this country are inflicted any harm or that they should shed tears. We should defend everybody’s right to life, accommodation and education.
The reasoning of those who torch the place does not make them right; actually, as persons it does not interest us too much either.
We should demand that peace comes to this country, that people should not die, that they should be able to express, write or draw their thoughts freely, that they should not be prosecuted for these reasons. Thus, instead of saying “What can I do?” we can at least start by paying attention to what is happening.
Sure, share your photos of flowers every morning on your social media accounts, your Pilates shots, your cake recipes, İlber Ortaylı’s words, your selfies…
Discuss the derby at breakfast… At lunch, debate whether you will celebrate New Year’s Eve at home or out somewhere…
But even if life goes on for you, know that for many people of this country, life has stopped. Be curious of what is happening in the east of the country, feel the torched, lost souls.
Worry about journalists who are sent to jail like Can Dündar and Erdem Gül, who committed no other crime but informing us of the facts.
When the public raises its voice in this country, there may be no response heard from the other side…
But never mind this.
Say, all together, “Peace” and say all together “Freedom to journalists.”
If no answer comes, record it as a debt.