As someone, who lived and witnessed the Communist regime and its fall, Klaus has always been a strong proponent of freedom and liberty. Therefore, being awarded by a prize that holds a name of the great national poet Sándor Petöfi is special for him, more so now, in the times of Europe’s decline.
Klaus recalled Petöfi as a true Hungarian and his manifesto “The 12 Points”, in which Petöfi called for the freedom of the press, for an independent Hungarian government, and the Parliament created by democratic parliamentary elections, as truly revolutionary. He named demands, some of which would be revolutionary even now in the post-democratic European Union.
Klaus especially pointed out the Central European aspect of the Prize. According to him, rather a cultural entity of the Central European peoples is extremely important. I don’t only feel to be a Praguer and a Czech, but a Central European as well, which connects me with the Hungarians, the Slovaks, the Poles, the Austrians and other nations from our region, added Klaus.
That is why Klaus finds the true European identity and the whole European unification project to be weak without any authenticity. We should not constantly be looking upon the so-called European integration but to national pride. As Klaus put it, we should not be ashamed of giving the nation a fundamental position in our thinking and behavior, while not leaving out the ‘holy trinity’ that defines us as Europeans– the man, the woman, and the family.
It is important to promote the freedom of the peoples of Central Europe now when nation states like Hungary and the Czech Republic have to fight for their sovereignty once again, just as it was important back in the Petöfi times. According to Klaus, we must fight against new ‘feudalities’ in our society, against the nomenklatura of political elites, against omnipotent bureaucracies, against special positions of judges and courts, against non-democratically functioning and not-authentically created political NGO´s.
Klaus also reminded Petöfi’s demand to have the Hungarian Government Institutions in Budapest, not in another country, and its striking resemblance to our current situation with Brussels. Klaus believes that Petöfi would oppose an impotent idea of Europe without borders because it ultimately means Europe without citizens and thus without democracy. According to Klaus, Petöfi would also recognize mass migration as a way to destroy European culture and civilization.
We should rely on the wisdom of ordinary citizens and their democratically elected leaders (labeled populists these days), said Klaus. Based on our historical experience, we know that any change takes political courage. In his remarks, Klaus concluded by saying that we are living in a dangerous moment in history when our identity is endangered by new ‘isms’ and ideologies, and we should reward those who stand up against them.
Klaus outlined his modest 5 points, what our efforts should focus on:
– we – who refused to accept the ideology of communism in the past – shouldn´t be reconciled with the current attempts to establish the religion of multiculturalism as the official ideology of Western (and European) society;
– we – who are aware of the fragility of the West on the one hand and of its aggressive and ruthless enemies (many of them from inside) on the other – should oppose the multiculturalists’ crusade against Western Civilisation;
– we, the true believers in the nation state, should fight the destructive European ideology (I call europeism) which is hidden in the text of the Lisbon Treaty and which aims at overcoming the nation-state;
– we – who were dreaming for decades during the communist era about the rule of law and civic rights – should resist the ideology of “humanrightism”, which means the attempts to replace freedom with “rights” (especially the relatively new endeavor to include the right to migrate among the human rights);
– we should prefer freedom to fairness (and equality) which asks for getting rid of the stifling political correctness (coming close to George Orwell´s double-think and newspeak).