Marx’s take on EP elections
Jun 04, 2014
A lot has been said on the results of the elections of the European Parliament. Why not also see what Marx has to say about them.
I am not referring to Karl Marx the founder of Communism but to a different kind of Marx. Reinhard Cardinal Marx is the president of COMECE, the association, so to speak, of bishops of the European Union. He has just released a statement about the event.
The European bishops had released a very well-thought of message before the election. It is only natural that they comment on the result. There is no incubus keeping them away from commenting on things political.
Probably you would have guessed that Cardinal Marx would comment on the increased elector support for extreme right wing parties whom Marx described as “parties which reject the project of European integration.” He considers this “significant increase of support” to be “a matter of concern”. Then he makes a very strong statement which the so-called Catholics who voted for Lowell et al should take note of.
“Some of these parties are not only populist but nationalistic and xenophobic. Such positioning is unacceptable for Christians and is a threat to the peaceful coexistence of the peoples of our continent.”
The position of the supporters of these parties is “unacceptable for Christians”. This means that you cannot call yourself a Catholic and vote for such ilk.
Marx then makes a very strong political statement. (I warned you that he is not afraid to ‘get involved’ in things political. The reason is very simple: morality should be the basis of politics.
“The reasons for their electoral success are certainly diverse and it is still too early for a deeper analysis. Nevertheless, I believe that it will be even more important in the future to lead the debates on European issues that affect all citizens in an open and transparent way. This applies both to the elected politicians as well as to the media coverage of Europe and European politics. It may no longer be enough to make "Brussels” a scapegoat because of one’s own political discomfort. Europe is and remains, despite any criticisms on some specific points, a project of peace and reconciliation and as such is accompanied and supported positively by the Catholic Church.”
Marx says that the “electoral programme” released will form the basis of the structured and formal dialogue that the EU treaty says that there should be between the Commission and the Churches. The basic points of this electoral programme were the following:
• Policies that make human dignity a holistic principle for action;
• a reorientation of the economy in line with the principles of the social market economy;
• trade agreements that serve the peoples of Europe, without losing sight of the situation on other continents, such as Africa;
• a dedicated fight against (especially youth) unemployment;
• a just and fair migration policy, which attempts to prevent disasters such as that of Lampedusa;
• energetic steps towards a policy of climate protection and comprehensive sustainability; the preservation of peace and security in Europe and in the neighbouring countries.
He gives a very clear commitment that the Church will not act like the three proverbial monkeys when it comes to European matters:
“COMECE will accompany, in a critical and constructive manner, the European policy-making on the basis of the Social Doctrine of the Church and with the support of its prayers.”