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Schmidt-Häuer, Christian

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Die Zeit - Germany | 07/05/2009

Christian Schmidt-Häuer on the lack of democratic consensus in Hungary

Christian Schmidt-Häuer expresses concern in the weekly paper Die Zeit about the political situation in Hungary: "Scatterbrains, skinheads and other violent criminals march on the political sidelines across Europe. In most countries, however, they are held under quarantine by citizens' initiatives and rules of law. Not in Hungary. Here there is no organised protest, no democratic consensus against them. The borders between extreme right-wing radicals and conservative majority are blurred in the quagmire of racist and nationalist sentiment. The populist opposition leader Viktor Orbán, who could secure a right-wing conservative two-thirds majority in the next elections, has in past years played the people off against the parliament, and toppled the social liberal coalition with help from the street. Not a few priests and clergymen have joined him. There is no law against hate speech, because in the new constitution after 1989 freedom of opinion is put above human dignity."

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