Friday, June 03, 2011

Good News From Hungary

In case you had not noticed, Hungary has a whopper of a new constitution that is giving the European Union and other international organizations something to think (and gripe) about. Critics call the text's reference to Christian heritage and its emphasis on strong families a dangerous blast from the past. A debate in the civil liberties committee of the European Parliament has been scheduled for next week and it promises to be quite acrimonious.

But Hungary's popular ruling parties, who famously drafted most of the document on an iPad, are convinced they are moving forward from the outdated, self-centered secularist ideologies that – look around! they say – are leading societies to a cultural, demographic and economic dead end. The future, if there is to be one, lies in promoting human dignity and economic responsibility.

“Hungary can be said to have rejected the post-modern model of society,” the Strasbourg-based European Centre for Law and Justice wrote last week in a memorandum on the new Hungarian Constitution. The Central European nation is not alone, the report notes, in distancing itself from the relativistic, anti-Christian and anti-family ideas that have come to dominate European policymaking in recent decades, but which conflict with many people's understanding of human rights, social welfare and national identity.

The Parliament in Budapest adopted the new Fundamental Law of Hungary on April 18 by a vote of 262 to 44. President Pal Schmitt endorsed it a week later to take effect from the start of 2012.

After a preamble that proudly “acknowledges the role that Christianity has played in preserving our nation”, the constitution proceeds, among other things, to declare human life worthy of protection from the moment of conception, define marriage as the union of a man and a woman, urge protection of the institution of the family “as the basis for survival of the nation”, prohibit “practices aimed at eugenics”, ban human trafficking, espouse protection of the environment and biodiversity, and set strict limits on the level of the national debt.
Read the rest here.

HT: Dr. Tighe


Anonymous said...

Glory to God.

Chris said...

Wonderful news, indeed.

rabidgandhi said...

Sure it may have some provisions you agree with, but I think the document should be read more carefully before breaking out the confetti. It seriously weakens the judicial branch and sets the stage for long term one party rule. Fidesz can now pack the courts and dissolve parliament practically at will. Furthermore, they have taken out labour and health care rights that were hard fought for by generations of Hungarian workers.

IM not so HO, recent constitutions (like this right wing one and the left wing one in Ecuador) aim not so much at solid laying political foundations as they do having the ruling party bulldoze in outlandish laws beyond its mandate. Yet another reason why constitutions generally suck.

Anonymous said...

The test of ultimate soundness will be what protections are provided a) against the ravages of the free market (economic and social) and b) what protections will be provided for minorities, a category within which I would include both Jews and Orthodox Christians.