Let’s be realistic

Dersimliliğini CHP’lilere “açıklamaya” çalıştığı anlardan birinde Horasan’dan göç etmiş bir Türkmen ailesinden geldiğini söyleyen Kılıçdaroğlu’nun kafayı Suriyelilere takmasını mezhepçilikle, Alevi oylarına oynamayla açıklamamayı tercih ederim.

The last hope is for the Peoples' Democratic Party's (HDP) to pass the election threshold and its "charismatic" leaders (as described by the Economist) to exert their authority in politics. The Western media, which believes that the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) is a great threat and undoubtedly wishes the wellbeing of Turkey, does its best to persuade its audience to believe this idea. It is said that the objective is to prevent the AK Party from introducing the presidential system, which will lead the country toward dictatorship.

But the bizarre fact of the matter is, the AK Party has more access to power and arbitrary decision-making under the current system than it ever would under the proposed presidential system. Today, it both has the majority in Parliament and a highly authorized (yet not responsible) presidential seat. It is impossible to prevent the AK Party from carrying out anything it wishes as long as it does not violate the Constitution. And the Constitution is so riddled that it renders any action possible. So, if the fears and concerns are really over the possibility of a dictatorship, it is essential to change the current system immediately.

On the other hand, the introduction of a new political system would be inevitable with a new constitution, since the system would be shaped as part of the Constitution. Consequently, a possible presidential system would also be included in this overall framework. This process is unlikely to take a short time. As a society, we will most likely discuss the qualities of a new constitution and a new political system, and the grounds on which they are based for at least two years. No one is going to secretly form a confidential constitution and suddenly put it into force overnight. A referendum will be held after its final version is agreed upon, which would lead to new discussions and political polarizations while also helping to inform society.

The new constitution will inevitably be much more democratic than the current one. The preamble will change and be formed as a text focusing on human rights and dignity. The vested rights will not be reversed and a legal ground encompassing the resolution of the Kurdish issue will also be provided. It is clear that the regulations required for such a resolution will transfer all the problems of Turkey onto a fairer platform. In other words, no presidential system without balance and control mechanisms will be created. Such a system will not resolve the problems, and such proposals will not be accepted by the public.

But if you are at all cognizant of the ongoing sociological transformation in Turkey, you must know how ridiculous it is to think that a ruling government might bring dictatorship. We are now living in a country where religious segments of society have prospered, a new idea of urban life has spread, and education and health spending has soared. There is no possibility of reversal in freedom of expression. So far, all the age-old taboos have been broken including the Armenian genocide, the idea of federation, Mustafa Kemal and Islam. A dictatorship cannot possibly rule the religious segments of society, which is the AK Party's base, let alone secularist groups.

The AK Party is aware of this fact, since it maintains the practice of taking the pulse of the public. It is preparing to change 70 percent of its parliamentary group at these elections. It endeavors to put forward the names of younger candidates and women, trying to increase their number. To this end, the age of candidacy will be reduced to 18. As the AK Party democratized the public sphere, it also expanded its own base and it still has a long road to travel. It is unthinkable for a party, which has benefitted so enormously from the democratization process, to be diverted from this target for no good reason, especially while their rivals are losing in the same democratization process. Therefore, there will be no difference even if the HDP passes the threshold. A new constitution will be formed sooner or later, and Turkey will adopt a political system that is suitable for its own structure and will sustain democratization.