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CALL FOR ACTION
De Vrijheidsjurist (DVJ) – in English: The Freedom Lawyer – is an association of lawyers and other legal professionals who express growing concern about western governments increasingly restricting liberty and civil rights today.
DEMOCRACY IS AT STAKE
There is a worrisome tendency where legislative and executive bodies not only violate constitutional law but also intentionally try to elude accountability. Regrettably they are very successfully in doing so, largely because the media fail to expose the problem by looking the other way or playing along. All too often they have become the government’s voice. Alternative media are shunned and deprived from access to the public podium. Anyone with a different opinion is too easily rediculed or canceled from public life. The health status of our democracy is without doubt very alarming.
All western democracies are based on the principle of the trias politica. However, where parliament and the executive branch are supposed to present a system of checks and balances, they in fact have become one or heavily intertwined at best. Also, the judiciary too often goes along and flagrantly fails in defending constitutional law and the values that lay at its foundation – legally, morally and historically. Instead of protecting the people against the all-powerful state it acts more and more as its protector, serving the interests of the political and cultural establishment.
Effectively this means the end of the rule of law and democracy as we have known it for more than a hundred years or longer. It is morally corrupt and opens the gates to totally unchecked power and maybe even totalitarianism. Today many western democracies are on a slippery and very dangerous slope downwards. With it, society is becoming more divided every day. Minority groups of people with different believes and views are deliberately pushed in margins of society and are at risk becoming second or third class citizens. Eventually that will backfire one way or another.
Underneath these tendencies is an uncurrent – hidden and unseen by the many – that is slowly eroding the constitutional system from the inside. Liberty and civil rights as they are laid down in our Constitution have always been the crown jewels of western identity. They have brought us prosperity and progress - social, cultural and economic. Today these values are attacked by very sinister forces that for whatever reason clearly have other ideas. Not only our liberties are at stake but also the very essence of western culture and civilization.
DVJ opposes these developments and sounds the alarm. We have drawn up the Declaration of Essential Liberties of Mankind. The five Principles in the Declaration are:
1. Inviolability of the individual is the most sacred and unalienable right of every person. It can only be restricted when serious crimes or offences are committed.
2. Restricting constitutional rights should – if necessary – always be temporarily and of a short-term nature, intended to find a most humane solution.
3. A Constitutional Court must be established for the purpose of enabling people to challenge the State when unconstitutional actions are made – both from a legal and moral perspective.
4. Legal actions from the State may be legally correct but still can be morally flawed or corrupt, also from a historical perspective. This basic principle should always be taken into consideration.
5. Restricting or suspending constitutional rights without a legitimate cause and when less drastic measures are feasible is a crime against humanity.
FREEDOM IS NON-NEGOTIABLE
From a strict legal or theoretical perspective all civilized nations in the world today have a relatively well-balanced and sophisticated constitutional and democratic system. But when its institutions, investigative journalism and other watchdogs included, are becoming weak, the quality of our democracy and rule of law are seriously being undermined - maybe even to the point where they are becoming merely outer appearance. That is what we see happening today. That’s why we call for action.
DVJ is an independent non-profit foundation. We are in no way, directly nor indirectly, affiliated or associated with a political movement and other interest and pressure groups. We pursue our endeavours through legal action, public debate, and enlarging public awareness. Our course of action is based on argument, logic and (scientific) facts. We distance ourselves from conspiracy theories and alike and do not engage in discussions involving fictions and unproven facts.
We uphold and honour the same traditions that over the past century and longer have lead to the rise of modern democracy and western civilisation - and with it, an unprecedented growth of prosperity, technological achievements and artistic creation.
Stichting De Vrijheidsjurist, Dutch Chamber of Commerce KvK 83991697
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