New era and the exigence of 'cultural construction'

There are several turning points in the history of Turkey, which was built on the legacy of the Ottoman Empire that was excluded from global politics. A new era in our history, which is marked by parliamentary governments, cabinet of ministers, single-party, national chief, transition to multi-party, coups and periods of discovering the open market, was initiated on June 24. We are all witnessing a new era in our history. Turkey internalized the republican administration system in 1923, and has now internalized the presidential system. The Turkish public and the Turkish Nation have granted approval for such a transition through "high" and "matured" participation in the constitutional referendum, and now to the elections held on June 24. Surely, many other changes in different periods of the history of the republic were also legitimate, except for the period of the coups. However, except for the period of the National Struggle, which prepared the transition to the republic, no period was ever so strongly supported by the public. As a matter of fact, all parties have admitted that Turkey was the ultimate victor of the election.

Election results and expectations

Turkey has not yet recovered from impact of the June 24 elections. Nearly everyone, from individuals to groups, parties and those who went or did not go the ballot box, has evaluated the elections. While some of these evaluations are based on analysis with valid logical evidence, the other significant portion is in the form of the manifestation of feelings and unfortunately also in the form of factionalism or otherization. We witness excessive forms of enjoyment that contrast with the maturity shown in the elections as well as viewpoints or even delusions that underestimate the nation’s choice and question the legitimacy of the elections, but most importantly, we witness self-separation attempts formed as a result of the "factionalist" rationale behind.

This image which reflects the mood stimulated by harmony or disharmony between the preferences of individuals at the ballot box and their hopes and dreams, is acceptable for the time being, but it is not sustainable. One must recover quickly and normalize. Of course, the election results, or rather the message of voters, will be analyzed by relevant parties. Parliament shall debate under which conditions it will conduct the legislative and supervisory powers in the new period. Survey companies, political scientists, and communicators will question their presupposition which lead to false predictions, and all other issues such as Nationalist Movement Party’s (MHP) disappointment in itself, why constituents voted for the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), the slogans of the Felicity Party; the impacts of the difference in vote percentages between the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the their presidential candidate Muharrem İnce; why İYİ (Good) Party failed, and the meaning of the votes of the Justice and Development (AK) Party and President Erdogan will be addressed and discussed. But they will not "factionalize." They will not be able to do it. The new period will allow this. The threshold system will most likely be improved and removed by the next election, representative justice will be ensured and the slogan, “Ankara, hear our voice,” will no longer be chanted. Executive and legislative bodies will move away from "the blind lead the blind" state, and start performing their actual functions.

Cultural construction period

Although our culture, traditions, and religion are against factionalism, the social traumas we have experienced in the last century have shaken up our society and mutated our cultural genes. With just a few years left before 2023, it is now time to eliminate this. From now on, individuals should not be known for their private life, lifestyle, or eating and drinking habits, but for their contributions, productivity, and positive and innovative ideas for the development of our country.

It should be without a doubt that as of June 24, the Republic of Turkey entered a new era. However, this new era should be marked by a period of “cultural construction” in order to carry this nation above contemporary civilizations. We must therefore begin a new cultural construction period in order to carry Turkey forward, bolster the Muslim world, and tell the world that, “We are here, and we have efforts to contribute to global development.”

A distinguished reader of mine who has served in every level of education, leads a life dedicated to education and has proved academic competence, commented on my previous column as follows:

Instead of criticism or compliments based on the results of the elections and other things, it is necessary to express the matters and ideas that should be done hereafter. An old saying goes, “The most acceptable saying before God is the truth spoken to a statesman.” Now there is another language (including that of academia). The field of culture is empty… If there is a claim for building a civilization, people to ensure this must be educated or cultivated appropriately.”

I suppose my readers and I agree on such an approach. History has proven time and time again that raising people takes precedence in order to build a civilization. States with bright histories are renowned with the people they raised, while problematic periods are infamous for lacking statesmen and skilled persons.

The distinguished professor mentioned above did not confine his remarks only to the above statements, but also drew attention to another problem of our time: an obsession with status. “Those who forget merit, self-denial and self-sacrifice seek only status and fail to contribute to positions that only contribute to themselves.

We need great minds. Whatever our goal is, we need realist and knowledgeable figures, intellectuals, great artists, and those who are highly qualified to stimulate scientific and technological developments.”

Are not the evaluations of an academic who has a life dedicated to education more of an observation than a complaint, and is not a suggestion to “speak the truth”?

In the "new era" conferred by history, we should stay away from meaningless struggles and trifling discussions, and instead focus on building a Great Turkey marked by its educated entrepreneurial figures, justice implementing structure and economy which distributes prosperity together.


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