Final Word from Tuesday, December 1, 2015

When TOP 09 prepared a quick amendment last week to the law on public assembly for making it possible to ban inappropriate gatherings at certain locations on four national holidays, Miroslav Kalousek said it never occurred to his party that it would propose such a thing. Indeed, the party that rejects any form of discrimination now wants to discriminate against those who hold different views. Miloš Zeman went too far by appearing at Albertov with Martin Konvička, and TOP 09 now wants to go too far in the other direction by chipping away at freedom of expression. This kind of exaggerated tit for tat is one of the defining moments of the 21st century. Russia overdoes it by provoking Turkey on the Syrian border, and Turkey overdoes it by shooting down a Russian warplane. Instead of politicians who talk and act tough, what the world needs now are politicians with thick skin who know when to act and when to back down gracefully. [Czech Republic Nato]

Glossary of difficult words

to de-escalate - to reduce the intensity of (a conflict or potentially violent situation);

to chip away at - gradually and relentlessly to make something smaller or weaker;

tit for tat - retaliation, reprisal or counterattack.

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