Advanced democracy snapshots

Advanced democracy snapshots

The Turkish Parliament and politicians of all walks nowadays are celebrating their success of “liberating women” and allowing women deputies to attend Parliamentary sessions wearing Islamist headgear. Thanks to the atmosphere provided by the liberalization of the veil, an opposition deputy Şafak Pavey as well managed to get permission to attend parliamentary sessions wearing trousers to cover the absence of one of her legs – lost in a tragic accident. Turkey is, of course, an advanced democracy and its democracy is further advancing with such great successes. Tit for tat, nothing is free.

I hope my readers had an opportunity to at least read what Şafak Pavey’s speech (or should I say lecture on democracy?) at Parliament the other day. Indeed, when and if Turkey realizes that democracy is not the dictate of the majority over the minority there might be the prospect of advancing the fundamentals of democratic governance. The perennial fear from the minorities of all sorts has been the backbone of the oppressive governance understanding, which over the past ten years was particularly carried to dictatorial levels. As Pavey rightfully underlined, was it not a farce for the “advanced democratic government” to ask the religious Affairs Directorate, controlled singlehandedly by the Sunni Hanefi sect, whether it considered Alevi Cem houses places of worship like mosques? How can a religious sect be given the right to decide on another religious sect? That appears to be a common practice in advanced democracy!

The premier has been obsessed with the number of children families should raise. Mussolini was saying four, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is more generous, saying “at least three kids” but from time to time underscoring that he would prefer ladies to have five or more babies. How can a premier possess the right to dictate to families how many kids they should have? It happens only in advanced democracies like of Mussolini, Hitler and Erdoğan.

Prime ministry and government spokesman Deputy Premier Bülent Arınç was in pain yesterday to “clarify” that that not only the control of student hostels were under the responsibility of the Youth and Sports Ministry, but claimed the premier wanted an “inspection” of student houses where boys and girls stayed together were totally wrong. The premier apparently could not control his tongue once again and let his dreams out… Still, no one can so far deny that during the weekend he decried that more hostels should be constructed to avoid girls and boys stay together in student houses, as no such thing could conform to “our conservative worldview.” Erdoğan must be told by his advisors that even in many hostels in “simple democracies” boys and girls might stay together, without prime ministers bothering how and with whom they are sleeping with.

The Marxist-Leninst Communist Party (MLKP) case, which has been continuing for the past seven or more years, ended with an exemplary verdict demonstrating the high respect to free thought, free politics and of course freedom of media in the advanced democracy of the Justice and Development Party. The court ruled an enforced life sentence against seven people, including Özgür Radyo broadcast coordinator Füsün Erdoğan and Atılım newspaper columnist Bayram Namaz on the grounds they attempted to change the constitution of the country. I might not subscribe to what they report or write – indeed not having anything in common with them apart from the profession – but is it not an intellectual obligation to defend the right to express of even those I might consider deplorable?