martes, 28 de junio de 2016

MercatorNet: ‘More creativity needed’ - Pope Francis on post-Brexit Europe

MercatorNet: ‘More creativity needed’ - Pope Francis on post-Brexit Europe

‘More creativity needed’ - Pope Francis on post-Brexit Europe

There can be a 'healthy disunity' along with fraternity, Francis suggests.
Pope Francis | Jun 28 2016 | comment 

Photo: TIZIANA FABI / AFP via The Daily Star

Returning from a pastoral visit to Armenia on Sunday night Pope Francis fielded questions from journalists, including one from Edward Pentin of the National Catholic Register about the result of Britain’s EU referendum. Pope Francis’s response to the Brexit question, as translated by the Catholic News Agency (and slightly edited by us – see square brackets), follows:
There is already a war in Europe. Moreover, there is a climate of division, not only in Europe, but in its own countries. If you remember Catalonia, [and] last year Scotland. These divisions… I don’t say that they are dangerous, but we must study them well, and before taking a step forward for a division, to speak well amongst ourselves, and seek out viable solutions …
I honestly don’t know. I have not studied the reasons why the United Kingdom wanted to make this decision, but there are divisions. I believe I said this once, I don’t know where, but I said it, that independence will make for emancipation. For instance, all our Latin American countries, even the countries of Africa, have emancipated from the crown, from Madrid. Even in Africa from Paris, London, Amsterdam …
And this is an emancipation, and is more understandable because behind it there is a culture, there is a way of thinking … rather [than] the secession of a country. I’m still not speaking of Brexit; we think of Scotland, all these … It is a thing that has been given a name, and this I say without offending, it is a word which politicians use: Balkanization, without speaking ill of the Balkans. It is somewhat of a secession, it is not emancipation. And behind (it) there are histories, cultures, misunderstandings, even good will … this is clear.
For me, unity is always better than conflict, but there are different ways of unity … and even fraternity -- and here [we] come [to] the European Union -- fraternity is better than animosity and distance; fraternity is better, and bridges are better than walls. One must reflect on all of this. It is true: a country [can say] “I am in Europe, but … I want to have certain things that are mine, from my culture.”
And the step that [is needed] -- and here I come to the Charlemagne Prize, which is given by the European Union to discover the strength that it had from its roots -- it is a step of creativity, and also of “healthy disunity,” to give more independence, more liberty to countries of the Union, to think of another form of Union, to be creative. And [to be] creative in places of work, in the economy. There is a liquid economy in Europe. For instance, in Italy 40% of young people aged 25 and younger do not have work.
There is something that is not good in this massive Union, but we do not throw the baby in the bath water out the window, no? We look to redeem the things and recreate, because recreation of human things, also our personality, is a journey, which one must always take. A teenager is not like an adult, or an elderly person. It is the same and it is not the same. One recreates continuously. It is this that gives life, the desire to live, and gives fruitfulness.
And this I underline: today, the word, the two key words for the European Union, are creativity and fruitfulness. This is the challenge. I don’t know, it’s what I think.


The five largest stadiums in England could fit everyone living in Iceland, with a few to spare. Yet its national soccer team has just thrashed England's fabled side in a 2-1 victory in the Euro 2016 tournament. The game is being described as the biggest humiliation in history for English soccer -- worse than when they lost to the United States in 1950. 
It's a remarkable achievement for a plucky country which was so battered by the 2008 global financial crisis that 97 percent of the banking sector collapsed in just three days. Half of the country's businesses were technically bankrupt. Happily Iceland has bounced back, bruised but brave. As Walter Pless suggests below in his comment on the game, fairy tales can come true -- if you work hard. 
The other big story today is a sweeping affirmation of abortion rights by the US Supreme Court. Denise M. Burke writes that the decision will permit shoddy abortion clinics "to remain in business without meaningful regulation or oversight". it's a must-read.

Michael Cook 

Iceland’s giant killers
Walter Pless | FEATURES | 28 June 2016
A sporting minnow has defeated England in the 2016 European Championship
Would you torture a baby? Why not?
Karl D. Stephan | FEATURES | 28 June 2016
If there are things we must not do, we need to ask why.
US Supreme Court refuses to protect women from abortion industry abuses
Denise M. Burke | FEATURES | 28 June 2016
In striking down a Texas law it overturns its own precedents.
‘More creativity needed’ - Pope Francis on post-Brexit Europe
Pope Francis | ABOVE | 28 June 2016
There can be a 'healthy disunity' along with fraternity, Francis suggests.
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