Bottom-up blog

UNIVERSAL RULES AND PRINCIPLES FOR LOCAL MINORITIES

or

A FEDERAL APPROACH TO SOLVE MINORITY PROBLEMS

 

1. BACKGROUND-MOTIVATION-TARGETS:

 

– urgency to find an universal approach to solve national minority conflicts like those in Ukraijnija;

– necessity to protect existing majorities, their cultures, languages and traditions against the shortfalls coming from the mobility of people, immigration, citizenship and local voting rights;

– restorage of the image of the European integration process as the only political approach guaranteeing the peacefully living toghether between people of different cultures and languages and offering to everybody the assurance that his cultural and linguistic identity will be safeguarded by federal structures which are based on local selfgovernment, the maintainance of the traditional cultural and linguistic environment and democracy;

 

2. METHOD:

APPLYING UNIVERSAL PRINCIPLES WHICH EVERYBODY WOULD ACCEPT FOR HIMSELF

 

The ‘categoric imperative’: Treat your neighbour as you want to be treated by him! 

– (1st principle > Emanuel Kant)

Laws are solving conflicts: Recogniton of the existing political and administrative borders and of the consensus that these borders could only be changed on objective grounds in a peaceful way; 

– (2nd principle > Helsinki agreement)

Equal rights and treatment : Each individual can refer to his human rights and to his personal protection within these internationally agreed conventions 

– (3rd principle > UN, Council of Europe)

The citizen is the sovereign: Sovereignty and collective rights of people find their first expression in democratic elections on the local level, i.e., within the smallest political entity whichis democracticly elected; 

– (4th principle > democratic principle, one man, one vote)

Interdependencies create larger political units/from the bottom up: Common interests and problems at the local level can only be tackled within larger political units under the aspect of equality, mutual respect, reciprocity and solidarity; 

– (5th principle> principle of subsidiarity and of solidarity at the higher political level)

Mobility is a element (privilege) of citizenship: Citizenship within a given territory (autonomous district, Canton, Region, Country, State, Community, Federation, Union) implies free mobility and settlement of people as well as the right to participate in elections in an active and passive way 

– (6th principle > cititzenship and the right to vote)

The one who moves has to adapt – or – Ones own freedom ends where the freedom of the other begins! Those who move freely within the common territory and settle there, where they want, have to accept the rules, language(s) and traditions of the place of their choice; they have to adopt and to adapt to indigenous and local habits and integrate themselves, not the other way round! 

– (7th principle > principle of ancienty)

The indigenous population has to be protected: In order to avoid, on the basis of the democratic principle, a permanent competition in the representativity of each cultural and linguistic group at a specific place (through birth and emigration), a historic majority which becomes one day a democratic minority within its own territory willbe assured to keep its linguistic rights, traditions and administrative conditions; 

– (8th principle > the territorial principle)

Who pays should also receive: Existing local minorities should get facilities according to their importance in the total number of the population at the place concerned; 

– (9th principle > principle of local self-government and proportionality)

Administrative efficiency is part of the local welfare: In order to give a strong incentive for a new-comer to integrate into the existing cultural and political framework of the Commune and to support efficiency of the local self-government, all administrative paper-work (documents) should be, in principle, only in one language, but as the principal language(s) of the neighbour communes should be taught obligatory in the schools of the Commune, at least the passive knowledge of the neighbours’ language will not be an obstacle to private and professional mobility (example: Canton Fribourg/CH with unilingual districts and Communes) 

-(10th principle > administrative unilinguism and educational multilinguism)

Decisions should be taken as close as possible to the people: The existence of a minority problem can only be detected, defined and finally be solved within the smallest political entity democraticly elected and clearly deliminated by its administrative borders; 

– (11th principle> principle of cultural and linguistic autonomy on the local level)

All citizen have the same rights: If there are, from the territorial point of view, large Communes, Municipalities or Agglomerations, with a high concentration of a minority in specific areas (for example: more 75%), the possibility should exist to create homogenous sub-administrative self-government units (Quartiers, village) from the cultural and linguistic point of view, in any case, economically they all have to collaborate on the higher and larger democratic level. 

– (12th principle > principle of democratic selfdetermination)

3. FRAMEWORK OF APPLICATION:

a) immediately: Ukrainija, former territories of Ex-Jugoslavija ; application of a canton-principle!

b) United Nations, ECSC, Council of Europe, European Community

 

Brussel/Bruxelles, 05.09.14 Michael Cwik

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