ACTION Dechev: A healthy environment is a precondition for a healthy society

Stevce Dechev, Impact Net Foundation at the Conference “The Greens Are Coming 2020”, organized by CIVIL.

At a European Conference that we organized in Skopje several years ago, Prince Philip Kiril was our guest participant, great-grandson of last German Emperor Wilhelm II. And it is precisely with his statement that I would like to start my address today. Namely, he said: I ask forgiveness from all of you for that my first grandfather and his royal entourage did not take enough measures to prevent World War I, the arrival of Hitler, and then World War II.

German National Socialism was formed under the influence of Nietzsche, and in realization of Hitler, who planned to create a new religion in which race and blood would be of highest value. That created a world war and destroyed millions of people through unprecedented atrocities in human history. Rejecting the traditional system of values driven by extreme irrationality and animal hatred that has caused unspeakable suffering.

Conversely, nationalism enriched with an ideological framework gave the worldwide proletariat a task to build a society without classes and establish dictatorship of the proletariat, with a desire to build a stateless structure around the world, called communism.

Opposite to these two bases emerged the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as a reaction to the barbaric acts that fill the conscience of humanity with bitterness.

On the Balkans, but also in other regions, the awakening of the national conscience among people helped the freeing of slavery. But later that nationalism crossed from a liberating force to encouragement for divisions and hatred, everyone against everyone else, and that became a two-edged sword. Various groups tried to take advantage of the national and religious sentiments in order to achieve their political goals, thus creating much hatred, confusion and suffering.

Contrary to this, we can find a response in the Cristian thought: to love one’s own nation does not mean to hate or exclude others.

In more recent times, propagators are appearing everywhere who want to resurrect those sinister ideologies or to upgrade them with acts of terrorism in various forms, or in a milder and wrapped like a candy form to enter a certain parliament as a political party and to sow hatred and intolerance.  That is why people around the world need our thoughts and proposals for building lasting peace and deep cooperation between religions, between nations, so that unity of the human race is preserved and equal rights for all people.

Therefore, we must conclude that only through dialogue, based on complete mutual respect and respect for diversity and values of other can peace be preserved, common tasks realized and greatest ideals of the modern world followed.

Preserving traditions and national, folkloric, philosophical, ethical, literary and other sacredness is a feature for a patriot, but when all that becomes a belief that it is superior to everything else that supposedly is no good, it becomes dangerous and leads to radical forms of nationalism. 

A nationalist by definition is an ignorant. He knows, or thinks he knows, his values, his national or values of the nation to which he belongs to, and is not interested about the others. For him, the others are hell.

The nationalist does not recognize other cultures (they do not affect him). Hence, nationalism is a negativity. Nationalism is a negative category of the spirit because it lives on and from denial. He has the position that he is the positive one, and everyone else is the negative one. Nationalism is backward. Nationalist paradigm contaminates all other areas of the political sphere, creating a kind of a monopoly over the political life, and thus also problems of economic, cultural and political nature.

Opposite to nationalism is intercultural dialogue that rises above that ethnocentric egoism with the purpose to express and establish respect for diversity. 

Opposite to nationalism are dialogue and establishing relations.

Opposite to nationalism are common policies for a better quality of life for all, not just for some. Such type of policies are the GREEN POLICIES and GREEN VALUES, green thought, green measures that unify towards a more quality life.

A new focus of the green values and efforts is the EUROPEAN GREEN DEAL. From an urgent challenge to a single possibility. It restores the effort for dealing with climate challenges and challenges related to the environment, which is the task of this generation. The European Green Deal is a response to many challenges. It is a new strategy for growth that has the purpose to turn the EU into a fair and prosperous society, with a modern, efficient and competitive economy, where in 2050 there will be no emissions of greenhouse gasses and where economic growth is independent of the use of resources.

It also has the purpose to protect, conserve and strengthen EU’s natural capital and to protect the health and well-being of the citizens from risks and influence related to the environment.

Stronger social justice and public health, stronger Europe!

The COVID-19 pandemic has seriously tested the limits of the European cohesion. During this crisis, the member-states have reacted by closing borders and stopping the supply, instead of coordinating and sharing resources. For all of us outside the EU, and for EU itself, functionality and adaptability will mean putting the needs of patients in the center of the public health and recognizing that human health, social justice and environment are indivisibly connected.

From all this we can say that the main idea is that a healthy environment is a precondition for a healthy society and that building a healthy society is not possible without a high social policy, and that it is not a means for continuing our working lives, but a goal in itself.

translation: N. Cvetkovska

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