Concern of nationality has gone into a mental surrender. There is not only a political crisis born of the legitimacy issue between the individual and state at the hands but also a collapse of ideal and diminish of life due to a “loss of passion.”
Kurdish question in Turkey, the recent Peace Process and following terror activities have been urging us once again to contemplate on the relation between the individual and state in this land, and this time more seriously, maybe even in a more meticulous manner to pay regard to historical roots of them.
Are we subjects, citizens or just people in this land?
Era of being subject is over with the ending of the Ottoman Empire. In Western modernization, after the French Revolution individuals have been recognized as citizens before states by the redefinition of politics. On the basis of constitutional contract, the citizens whose “basic rights” are protected before the existence of state are obligated to serve their states the best they can. In return, state protects individuals’ rights. The positivist citizenship understanding that is entirely based on material grounds and reciprocity has become the new identity and the political regime of the Turkish Republic.
After the Independence War, Turkey had managed to come over the highly challenging periods that are built on Islam’s constituent and integrating bond of allegiance. In a short period of time it has broken up this relation grounded on “nation base,” and the citizenship consists of Western modern states’ nation state slogans and symbols has begun to come to the fore. The individuals once “existed for the state” have started to ask for their own share. As the bonds between the state and the individual have been set as synthetic and built on expectations, especially minorities have found more opportunities to assert right.
Is the state debtor, and ethnic identities creditor?
The citizenship base in time has strengthened the perception that state is debtor and ethnics are creditors. With this perception, legitimacy of foundations like European Court of Human Rights, which is already imperialist and supporter of micro-nationalisms, has been fortified. The understanding formulating the relation between individual and state with “allegiance to state and Constitution” came to an end at least in Turkey. Not only in the terror issue, the “citizenship” system which has carried the space of existence of ethnic identities and their folk identities to nationalism has started to drive Turkey to nationalism from ethnicity. The state in this respect has gone into a mental dissolution. This is not only about the people as people but also about the increasing concern of different cultural groups regarding their perpetuity. According to some groups wild about estimations there are more ethnic groups in Turkey than the Ottoman Empire. Since the identity politics have turned into individual politics, demands of identities have been sourced by their own micro bases. Thus, the orientations questioning their loyalties to the state and settle their accounts with peoples become more powerful.
Today not only irresponsible individuals but also ethnic identities, each citizen who looks after the others don’t say “we owe to Turkey” but on the contrary say “Turkey owes us, it should render its payments immediately.”
However, in the era when the Anatolia is Islamized and became homeland, a nuncupative pact was made between the land and peoples not based on interests and reciprocity. In our culture, an agreement is not signed between individual and state, an existential pact is made. The state cannot yet exist apart from its people as the state entirely exists with the presence of the peoples. As these lands have been turned into homeland, the people’s identity was actualizing its equipment and internality that would make its existence in the world meaningful.
The “homeland” in which “common” ideals merge with transcendental values was being shaped together with people’s identity simultaneously. The homeland is already the base in which the density that is born as a result of people’s values match with their ideals is met. A rooted people structure preserved its existence until the end of the Independence War. The Republic aimed to develop a new allegiance form by annihilating the homeland and people that obtained identity through Islam. It denied its roots whilst identifying the Turks whom they try to decouple from Islam. They were reduced to an identity within mere ethnic identities by removing from the Turkishness mission. Its founding feature has therefore become disputable. As the Islamic part has been tried to be removed, no more Turk is left but just its draught.
Should loss of passion turn to loss of control…
Nowadays people’s existence loses the control too, not only the state.
The control loss may best be seen on the terror issue. If we look at the multiple reading, in the short term the issue will be resolved but we lose in the long run and some lands will be lost. Those who seek revenge think the terrorism has scaled up and believe in fighting fire with fire despite all those rights granted. The rationalist logicians are of opinion As much as ones acting with anger that living together is not in the agenda any more. The negotiators believe that they can get away with it easily by considering the negotiation table option. Depression is hiddenly dominating the general atmosphere; the public falling into depression prefers to show that violence is not the solution by using violence. Those using Polyannaist psychology to be more optimist again rely upon Kurds and expect them to “change their minds and not vote for Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP).” The true optimists, Kurdish nationalists, by realizing how far they made want to go as far as showing the pleasure of directing politics with reference to “unbalanced equality” in Turkey’s administration. The hyenas waiting for their turn struggle for a bunch of gain for their ineffective politics by pushing others to the field. Socialism’s anti-people attitude is at a stage in which political exhaustion will lead to new alliances.
In Turkey, the manipulation of politics by elements external to people is strong enough to annihilate our ancient qualities. Control will be lost as long as desperation, pursuit and urgency steer politics.
Understanding of Turkishness defined by the Republic has brought along a long period of pessimism. Sometimes oppression and sometimes conformism have stifled the “people feature” of Turkish people. The “people” concern has gone into a mental surrender. Now presently there is not only a political and legitimacy crisis between individual and state born of citizenship but also a diminish of life due to “loss of passion” and ideal collapse.
The people could have mobilized and overcome their prostration and desperation with passion as they come on the brink of the abyss and. Citizens who prioritize themselves killed the “passion,” the guarantor of people life. The state and people, society and individual, soul and body have come to a point of dissolution. Only a passionate soul can stop the dissolution!