The former president of Uruguay Julio Maria Sanguinetti participated this Tuesday in a talk together with the senator Martin Lousteau where they addressed the threats that current democracy has in the region and did not leave out the analysis of the political situation in Argentina.
In the talk “The challenges of democracy in Latin America”, organized by the Colorado Party, Sanguinetti He referred to the recent scandal involving the Minister of National Security, Aníbal Fernández, and described the official’s words against LA NACION’s comedian, Nik, as “an unhappy and threatening expression for a journalist.” Along these lines, he stressed the need to defend freedom of expression and ensure institutional continuity.
“The battle for freedom of expression, for the law, for judicial independence are fundamental because without that there is nothing. It is necessary to recover the essential values ”, said the ex-president. And he continued: “We have to ensure institutional continuity, institutional security, stop unlimited reelectionism and defend freedom of expression, which is the guarantee of all other crimes. Without that, there is nothing. It is not an easy battle ”.
In another moment of the extensive exposition, the ex-president launched: “Argentina is the best country in the world to be a journalist because every day you have a whole novel.”
For his part, Lousteau differed from the ex-president’s analysis and argued that for him it was not an “unfortunate expression”. It was then that he attacked the official and made a fierce criticism of Fernández’s words against Nik: “I think it’s a patrimonial conception of the state and power. I believe that a Minister of Security who has the expressions that he had and also justifies himself by saying that the family, the children and the house are a temple, It is almost the code of the old hitmen. So it’s clear that what he did was a threat to someone who expressed a different opinion. “
And he sentenced: “If he did it without understanding that he has the weight of the State behind him, it is extremely serious; and if he did it understanding that he has the weight of the State behind him, it is even more serious ”.
During the meeting that was held via Zoom, both guests shared their views on democracy as a fragile political system which has faltered more than the market economy. According to the former president, the region and the entire world are going through the process of political transformation “strongest since the time of the Renaissance”.
Along these lines, Sanguinetti stressed: “Democracy does not promise a good government without freedom, the necessary guarantees to express yourself and the opportunity that if you don’t like the government, you can get it out by peaceful means.” And he argued: “All times of change and migration have been times of instability. And today we imagined that, with the fall of the Berlin Wall, we had already entered the Pax Kantiana, where neither the market economy nor liberal democracy is discussed anymore, it is clear that the latter is being discussed ”.
They also talked about the level of public debate that is carried out in Argentina and in what way social networks impact society today. According to Lousteau, in the country the public debate has been degrading and, sometimes through the own channels, the opinion of each one is more polarized. “Today you have to be as vehement as possible, as striking as possible to exist and that erodes the debate a lot. They pass less by the argumentation than by the fallacy to dominate and the plain and simple attack “, he observed.
Sanguinetti was born in Montevideo in 1936, he is a lawyer, journalist and politician, he was president of Uruguay in the periods 1985-1990 and 1995-2000, and is currently the general secretary of the Colorado Party. Among others, he wrote The reconquest. Democratic restoration process in Uruguay and Doctor Figari.