OPINION

Monarchist TV?

On Saturday afternoon, my 90-year-old grandmother was wandering around her yard, visibly anxious. My siblings and cousins had gone to the anti-war rally and she, watching the news on television, was worried that our whole family may be annihilated. The cameras were focusing on «masked youths,» communicating a completely distorted image of the rally. Not that tear gas wasn’t used: The police plunged peaceful demonstrators in Syntagma into a cloud of chemical fumes. But those, such as my grandmother, who watched the rally on television were left with two impressions: first, that the rally was just a handful of anarchists throwing Molotov cocktails; and second, that our democracy is in serious trouble following the visit to Athens of Greece’s ex-king for a memorial service. News bulletins became celebrity-centered reports: which flight the ex-king arrived on; who he and his family were to dine with that evening, and so on. The coverage wouldn’t have been much different if we had a constitutional monarchy in this country. Television is the modern ark – it preserves prehistoric political characters and stances -«bad» anarchists and «benevolent» former kings who eat fish like common mortals. My democratic grandmother is right to be scared, and to note that the world is going backward and that all the achievements of the parliamentary system have been violated.