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Ferdinand von Schirach's plan for a better world: We have it in our hands


According to bestselling author Ferdinand von Schirach, a modern world needs modern basic rights. He formulated six that should apply to everyone. An overview.

According to bestselling author Ferdinand von Schirach, a modern world needs modern basic rights.

He formulated six that should apply to everyone.

An overview.

  • Ferdinand von Schirach's great, great, great grandfather was one of the founding fathers of the United States

  • Like his ancestor, Ferdinand von Schirach wants to fight for the freedom of every human being

  • His book “Everyone” is supposed to become a political movement

He did it again.

Ferdinand von Schirach brings a thought into the world - and even before his accompanying booklet has even appeared, the discussion about it surges violently.

This is what the author and lawyer would like.

Because he thinks: We are all challenged now.

It is about nothing less than saving the world.

Now “Everyone” has hit the market in print.

Schirach sees himself in the tradition of his great, great, great, grandfather John Middleton - who was one of the 56 founding fathers of the United States who signed the American Declaration of Independence in 1776.

Schirach explicitly does not want to stand in line with his grandfather, Baldur von Schirach, one of the main war criminals of the National Socialists.

“He betrayed everything his ancestors fought for,” says the grandson.

And resumes the former struggle for the basic rights of every individual with his new work.


Ferdinand von Schirach.

© Michael Mann

Better: with his new action that should become a movement.

In just a few pages, the 56-year-old sketches how the American Declaration of Independence and the French Declaration of Human and Civil Rights came about - and makes it clear that there were true utopians at work.

George Washington, who presided over the Constitutional Consultation in 1787, wore a denture made from teeth drawn from his slaves.

And this man advocated a text that reads: “We take the following truths for granted: that all people are created equal;

that they are endowed with certain inalienable rights by their Creator;

that life, freedom and the pursuit of happiness belong to it. ”At that time it was not at all a“ self-evident truth ”- it was a vision of the future that did not describe society as it was, but how it should be.


Ferdinand von Schirach sees himself in the tradition of Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), the main author of the American Declaration of Independence.

© dpa

Two and a half centuries later, Schirach sees the time ripe for expansion.

"The signatories of the American Declaration of Independence and the Declaration of Human Rights, the mothers and fathers of the old constitutions in Europe did not know the Internet and the so-called social media," notes the author.

“They knew nothing about globalization, the power of algorithms, artificial intelligence and climate change.

The dangers to which we are exposed today could not even be guessed at that time. ”According to his conclusion, something is needed for the modern world.

Six new basic rights for a modern world

Schirach formulates six new basic rights.

And calls on all EU citizens to work to ensure that these fundamental rights are taken for granted.

Specifically, it is about the environment, digital self-determination, artificial intelligence, truth (“Everyone has the right that statements by public officials correspond to the truth”), globalization and the right to take legal action against systematic violations of this new charter.

These are all noble goals - who would defend themselves against the commitment to a “healthy and protected environment” or the right that all goods are manufactured in compliance with universal human rights?

By yesterday, more than 70,000 people had already signed up for the introduction of these new fundamental rights online.

Others criticize.

Mark Siemons from the “FAZ”, for example, points to the “systematic overstretching of the principle of fundamental rights”.

Fundamental rights, he and other critics emphasize, are a “pre-political zone that the liberal state has established to protect the freedom of the individual”.

They should not become “an instrument of political activism”.

The discussion has only just begun

So the question is: how many fundamental rights can we stand on - without losing our feet?

Or is that thought too small again?

Do we lack the utopian view of a better society as it could one day be?

The skeptics' hint that a wave of lawsuits threatened would enforce a basic right to a clean environment, speaks volumes.

For fear of being charged with maladministration, is it not even declared a maladministration?

The discussion has only just begun.

Ferdinand von Schirach: "Everyone".

Luchterhand, Munich, 32 pages;

5 euros.

You can buy the booklet here at the local dealer around the corner.

Voting for the new fundamental rights is possible here on the Internet.

Source: merkur

All life articles on 2021-04-13

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