Final Word from Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Commemoration of important events in history is increasingly the celebration of a concept or ideal, as opposed to a reality. Tomorrow's Czech national holiday is officially known as the Day of the Struggle for Freedom and Democracy and International Students Day, the first part of which suggests that freedom and democracy are never fully attained or at least never secure. The Velvet Revolution and shock therapy that ensued left little room for opposition to the course that was being set, and the vast majority of the people went with the flow for the next three decades. Yet Czechs now find themselves in what PM Petr Fiala has identified as the most difficult situation of the modern-day Czech state. Actions of the ruling coalition and opposition don't always reflect this, though, and the farther people are mentally and physically from the center of power in Prague, the less they are interested in vague promises. A poll this week by Deník, whose readers tend to be small-town or rural, shows that 60% don't think their life has improved as a result of the revolution 33 years ago. They'll need a better reality, or at least a new ideal. [ Czech Republic fight battle survey ]

Glossary of difficult words

commemoration - the act of recalling and showing respect for (someone or something);

struggle - a determined effort under difficulties;

attain - to succeed in achieving (something that one has worked for);

to go with the flow - to be relaxed and to accept a situation, rather than trying to alter or control it;

rural - in, relating to or characteristic of the countryside rather than the town.

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