Presidency and the new rightists - ÖMER LEKESIZ

Presidency and the new rightists

Based on his knowledge of and experience in managing a government, for the last two years, the president has been saying that it is necessary to switch to the presidential system.

Consequently, this solid and consistent statement should be embraced and supported by many, and thus it was.
The embracement and support becoming subject to multiple debates in terms of the conditions of its form and the principles of application was natural, and this, too, happened.

Naturally, in addition to the AK Party's efforts to win 400 seats in the general elections, the correct understanding and explanation of the benefits of the president's advice to his people has become the most important item on the agenda.

Who are we electing president and for where

We are going to elect the president for the state of our citizenship, without changing the system determined for its people only by means of making a partial change in it.

In other words, we are going to perfect the revolutionary change that was made in the secular and democratic Republic of Turkey with the election of the president by the people, by switching to the presidential system.

The basic subject here is the state and its system. Who will be elected president depends on the time, conditions, practices, developments and political preferences.

Just as it cannot be considered in this context as a personal ambition of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, simply because the first suggestion came from him, the probability of him wanting to be the first president is also not yet open for debate in terms of it being a potential case.

Consequently, the presidential system should be assessed meticulously, observing solely the people's interest and continuity of the state, within a secular and democratic state, without making it personal and idealizing it.

Cultural codes of the presidential system

In this context, the first matter that needs to be stressed is the relationship between the presidential system and culture.

Excluding the constitutional monarchies of the last 130 years' (in which the people were used as extras) republic and democracy theaters, it is known that for centuries we were managed under inmates, shahdoms, sultanates and caliphates and that we internalized this as part of our culture.

As for cultures, they do not change in 130 years, let alone in 400 years. Then based on this, we can say that the presidential system is in accord with our culture (considering the change is very fast: with our cultural codes).

However, it is important here to underline this matter: The previous systems we mentioned earlier materialized within their own conditions, worldly rights and way of belief (religious understanding).

The current presidential system (if it happens), in essence, having the same fundamentals, - in a way that it absorbs religious understanding(s) - will materialize at a time determined by secularism and democracy and at the nation-state platform.

Naturally, when discussing the presidency, we cannot discuss the matter with responses from Maverdi or Ibn Haldun. If we do, we will not be able to avoid anachronism in terms of history or we would draw religion (Islam) into a worldly debate, being responsible for a very risky degradation.

Double error by new rightists

Hence, the double error of new rightists is composed of these.

The final point reached by the new rightists, who defend the presidential system against the neo-nationalists and figures of the parallel structure - who consider the presidential system as a suggestion by the president for his own interest and try to debate it at a personal level due to their fierce grudge against him - with the “president's becoming the head of the state," as though confirming the prejudices of the neo-nationalists, is exactly as we mentioned above.

Let me briefly explain why I call them the new rightists:

Acting upon “the certain positive practices regarding religious freedoms," some people were mistaken not only to think that the state was Islamicized, they also became the protectors of discriminators and minorities, they also became lovers of un-Islamic beliefs.

On the other hand, when the old secularists who established a familiarity with the ruling party as a gunman, supporter, hireling, etc. (for one reason or another instead of a relationship that is truly based on self-interest) naturally became trench buddies with the said people, their purpose and language partnership increasingly turned into thought pollution.

When the “carry over the 1" type of conservatism that was embraced turned to secularism in one aspect and to piety in the other, it led to the emergence of a two-faced hypocrisy. What I am referring to as new rightism is the ideologically-positioned form of this hypocrisy.

If we get back to their relationship with the presidency matter:

The new rightists' comments aimed at defending the presidency are about to take a course that disrespectfully pillages religious concepts to gain favor in the eyes of Muslims, and takes the president's advice out of context, simply because they have made it personal.

Those with dirty mindsets, who compare the president to caliphs and imams, have taken upon themselves the duty to prevent the discussion of the presidential system within its own context with ideas such as “the presidency is more suitable to the practices of Allah," as the ones who have the authority to give such a right - which belongs to Allah and Allah alone.

Who in this case can defend what's right in the name of the presidential system? The neb-nationalists and figures of the parallel structure are lined up on one side and the new rightists on the other. The matter of presidency is, of course, one of great importance; however, right and wrong are about to mix even more.


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