Comment: No, Mr. Ponta, your resignation is not enough!

And no, Mr. Basescu, Blaga, Dragnea, Tariceanu, Kelemen & company, this is not a gift to you! You should all do the only decent thing that you have left and step aside before the people will throw you away!

Victor Ponta announced his resignation from the Prime Minister’s seat on Wednesday morning posing as a responsible leader, as he so often did throughout his 3.5-year leadership. His well-thought speech, intended at showing how mature and visionary politician he was, whose only thought was the wellbeing of his people, was, in fact, his last punch in the face to the Romanians who confronted him on Tuesday night in the streets of Bucharest, Brasov, Cluj-Napoca, and other cities in Romania, asking for his resignation.

Filling the blanks (in brackets) in Mr. Ponta’s statement, it would look more like this:

„I have the obligation to see the legitimate grief in society. People feel the need for more and it would be a mistake from my part to ignore this (even if I don’t fully agree with them, after all, what do I have to do with the people who died in Colectiv).” He could have simply said he also felt the grief and shared the view of the protesters that things needed to change and it would have been OK.

„I don’t want to and I don’t think it’s fair to leave this responsibility to the people who were on the field, to the mayors, state secretaries, and ministers (had they been quicker to resign, I would have had no reason to do so).”

„I’m ready (after a night of harsh negotiations with Mr. Dragnea and Mr. Zgonea, who fear that I would sink their party) to do the gesture that a part of society (there are many out there who love me and want me here) expects from me, and starting today I give up my mandate as a Prime Minister.”

„I do this because in my years as a politician I’ve managed to withstand any political battle (Ha, ha, you liberal fools! In your face, Basescu and Iohannis!), but I will not fight the people (to risk finding myself in Iliescu’s shoes over 25 years).”

And here comes the horseshoe in the glove: „I hope that my resignation and that of the Government will meet the expectations of those who protested and that we will soon return to reason and rational solutions for what is to be done in Romania.”

„In a cloudy climate, with people in the streets, it’s hard to promote new positive projects, and I’m only good at positive projects!”

What makes you think, Mr. Ponta, that the people who went out to protest on Tuesday were not reasonable? Why did you feel the need to ask people not to engage in aggressive behavior and violent language? And the positive projects part is just too much to comment. You could have just shut up, but you chose to defy them once more, as you have done so many times during the years.

The protest on Tuesday was probably the first rational protest in Romania in the past 26 years, hence its peaceful nature. People were not aggressive, most people didn’t even shout. Most of them went to the streets to show the politicians that they have become conscious of their own responsibility as citizens, that they would not tolerate corruption, ineptitude, and indifference. I didn’t see that blind passion that could turn into violence (as in previous protests where politicians were the ones who set the agenda). I just saw the people’s awareness of their duty to stand up for themselves, for their families and friends, for their right to a civilized society.

It was you, Mr. Ponta, and all your fellow politicians who have been unreasonable, who have long lost the true purpose of your mission. Little men with big jobs, intoxicated with the power you had over others, the power we allowed you to hold over us for so many years because it was more convenient to see to our lives than to try and change your faulty system.

No, Mr. Ponta, don’t think that you and your colleagues will go off so easily. You had many chances to resign but didn’t take them. You waited until the last moment, but you’ve waited for a second too long. And the wake-up bell has rung. The silent minority has awoken and will not stop until they wipe all of you corrupt, incapable politicians and all the non-values you represent.

Romanian politicians should take this warning very seriously. Mr. Basescu, you should not gloat, because this is not a gift to you (despite your birthday)! Mr. Blaga, Mr. Dragnea, Mr. Tariceanu (and others), you should not think that the people have forgotten who has been in charge of Romania in the past 26 years! The Colectiv tragedy could have happened under any of them and it was luck not competence that has prevented this so far.

I don’t know if we are going to be able to change you all at once, but don’t count on us sleeping while you do your dirty deeds anymore! Hopefully, this moral revolution that started with the Colectiv tragedy and the death of 32 people will determine more good people leave their reluctance, shame or fear aside and get involved in this project to rebuild Romania on a modern and solid foundation.

No, Mr. Ponta, your resignation is not enough! Because to stop now is to let you win!

Comment: The death of men, the resurrection of a people

By Andrei Chirileasa, Deputy Editor in Chief

#Colectiv ©Lyrics: Goodbye to Gravity; ©Placard: Alexandra Stef; ©Photo: Sorina Câmpean

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