Poles fighting for their constitution are on the cusp of a crisis

It’s still possible to hope that the Trump presidency might not be as bad as the president-elect has promised, that some of his wilder notions might be filed under ‘electioneering’.

It may be too late, though, to hope that Theresa May’s government has some idea of how to deliver the Brexit mandate expressed last June.

It is still not too late to hope that the swing to the right represented by those developments might be, to borrow a phrase, “soft landing” swings to the right.

They may not be but it is still possible to hope they might. Others may not be.

Hope has become increasingly scarce in Poland where the Law and Justice party, headed by Jaroslaw Kaczynski, came to power a year ago. Constitutional protections are being ignored, established procedures dumped, and media that might express opposition silenced.

There are suggestions that the autocratic Kaczynski aspires to dictatorship. There are, inevitably, mass demonstrations on the streets.

Poland is a member of the European Union and a democracy established after a long struggle with autocracy. The country seems on the cusp of crisis. Let us hope sanity, and democracy, prevail.


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