OPINION

Fuzzy on fine print

The first major step toward a new, integrated Europe was taken during last week’s European Union summit in Halkidiki as EU leaders agreed to embark on discussions and negotiations for an EU Constitution on the basis of a plan presented by former French President Valery Giscard d’Estaing. For such a significant development, however, there was little elaboration on the details. As European citizens, we must gain a proper insight into the workings of a changing EU structure. We need to be informed not only of our obligations (which those «in charge» make sure they remind us of, constantly and in detail) but also of our rights (which the same officials tend to speak very little of, if at all). The issue of the new Constitution is a good case in point, as public debate surrounding it is somewhat limited. The «awareness campaign» that should accompany such an important development is non-existent. Indeed, we have not seen even one television commercial focusing on the Constitution for a United Europe, like the ones we used to see about projects ostensibly carried out as part of the EU’s Community Support Framework. Similarly, the national newspapers hardly gave the content of the draft constitution any coverage, preferring to devote their page space to the clashes between police and anti-EU demonstrators in Thessaloniki.