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Haupt arrow newsitems arrow Tomi Ungerer Starts his 1st Year in Eternity : a Franco-German European to revisit USA on 2020 ?!

Tomi Ungerer Starts his 1st Year in Eternity : a Franco-German European to revisit USA on 2020 ?!

Geschrieben von ACM
Sonntag, 01 Dezember 2019
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*Strasbourg/Hilton/Angelo Marcopolo/- Invited by the Secretary General of the International Association of Tomi Ungerer's Friends, (AIATU in the Original in French), Robert Walter, Experienced former Long-Time Director of the Franco-German Cultural Center at nearby Karlsruhe, for the presentation to the Press of the very Serious, Annual "TomiScope" Review, naturally Focused on the Actuality of the Famous Humoristic Cartoonist and even CoE's PanEuropean"Ambassador"'s Brillant Work, "Eurofora" didn't expect to be, suddenly, propulsed at a Global, World-wide Horizon, in a more Topical Context than one could usually imagine, inviting to Travel accross Continents and throughout History, with a Spicy, Emotional and Imaginative Art.

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Naturally, when the AIATU's President, Constant Reibel, gave us, smiling, as a Gift, that precious "Collector's Item", which really is the "Number 20" TomiScope, due to Jump from 2019 to 2020, everybody expected -or, rather, Hoped- that it would Meet the Exceptional Challenge to gather, in its almost 100 large Pages, a lot of Interesting Data, pertinent Reminders, Revelations and/or News, that Inspired to his Best Friends,

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(including even the Young French President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron, who had Welcomed him at Elysée Palace), the Last "Joke" that Tomi played on Earth, by suddenly Jumping into Eternity, after More than 88 Years of a very Active and Creative Life, between 1931 and 2019.

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Earlier this Year, when the sympathetic Mayor of Nearby Kehl City at Neighbouring Germany, (Now Linked to Strasbourg not only by the "Europa Bridge", recently reinforced for High-Speed Trains, and even Bicycles, but Also by a Splendid Rhine River's "2 Shores Garden" and, at last, a popular Direct "Tram" Connexion, as if it had really Started to progressively Become One City for a foreseable Future), Tony Vetrano, (almost an Homonyme with Tomi !), a real Italian turned into a convinced Deutsch, and Ambitious enough as to try to Learn also French, as a Good European, had Welcomed the "Press Club" of Strasbourg in a well prepared Press Conference on the New, "Post-Tram" Era that was just Beginning for the 2 Cities, it's some Highly Symbolic Drawings of Ungerer on Franco-German Friendship and EU's core Integration, that Robert Walter, offered him as a Gift.

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Seated aside "Eurofora", Walter let us Notice the Fact that he had Offered, in Fact, 2, quite Different Ways to Imagine and Design a Joint Franco-German Future in Europe's Heartland : Both Interesting and Positive, one looked, however, even if equally ambitious, also a little-bit more ..."Techno" than the Other, which, on the Contrary, Focused on a very Simple but deeply Human Symbolic Image of 2 Friends rowing Together in 1 Boat through a splendid Nature... Curious to Find out which one Vetrano was going to Choose and show us all, or not, "Eurofora" soon saw that he had, indeed, chosen what looked as the most "Human" and SImple Version, (But Strong in Meening), almost at the Same Time that he Replied to one of Our Questions, during his Press-Conference, by, unexpectedly Pleading for what he named as the ..."Emotional" Character of "Border-line" Neighbouring Regions, which Share one and same Natural Border, (f.ex., here, a River, elsewhere, perhaps, a Mountain, etc)... Tomi Ungerer's Simple but Profoubd "Music" had worked just fine !     

But, Later this Same Year, we were genuinely Surprized to "Meet" anew Tomi Ungerer, this time Well Surrounded by Numerous among his Long-Time Friends, look at us all with a Kind but always Spicy Smile, High from the Top of Strasbourg Cathedral's Giant Roof, thanks to a Huge Image that himself and/or his Family and Pals had Chosen for the Ceremony of his Public Funeral, with the participation of several Confessions, and attended by a lot of People, clearly indicating his Popularity :

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Soon, the well known, Traditional Song for "Freedom of Thought", ("Die Gedenken sind Frei"), with the eternal Schieffer, echoed its Music in that emblematic, Historic Christian Monument. It was for a Protestant, who Liked that Catholic Cathedral, even added to some Jewish Yiddish, etc, amidst a Visible Franco-German participation : A Real "Alsacian" in the Middle of Europe...

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- However, when, during Today's 3rd "Meeting" that we had with Tomi Ungerer and his Friends, during this Same Year 2019, at AIATU's Gathering in Strasbourg's "Hilton" Hotel, "Eurofora" asked Walter and Reibel whether it was feasible to have, more or less, a Digitalized Catalogue uniting together a Full Overview of all the Huge List of various and Numerous Works Created by the Artist during all his Life, in a way which would Facilitate also People's and Experts' Research of the most Pertinent Artworks, among Tens of Thousands of "Pieces", (roughly separated between his "Museum" in Strasbourg's superb Republic Square, aside CoE's Secretary General's House, which is also an Internatiobnal Center for Designers, and those still Kept by his Family, living in Ireland since a long time ago, added also to a 3rd Group reportedly assembled by the German art collector Würth, etc), the Reply, given by Walter, was, basically, that, while something like that Already exists, somehow, inside at least a Part of Strasbourg's Museum for Tomi, nevertheless, a Fully-fledged, Scientific and systematic, overall Work of that Kind, might, Probably, be undertaken, sooner or later, "by the University of Cork", in Ireland, as he guessed.

+ And, then, suddenly arrived the Real "Surprize" :  - During the Next Year of 2020, "a Big Lot", more than 500 Pages-long, is due to Emerge, "with Tomi Ungerer's ArtWorks on America !", Walter announced Today. I.e., by a Timely Coincidence, during the Same Year of the forthcoming Crucial USA's Presidential Elections...

- Indeed, Ungerer had Left Europe during the 1950ies, in order to Work in the USA, at New York, and didn't Return but Only during the 1970ies, Walter Reminded to "Eurofora". During all that Period of Time, he was Living and Working there, even if he personaly was Against the residues of Maccarthysm and Cold War, Racial Segregation, Vietnam War, etc., and, on the Contrary, Favorable for Detente, Civic Rights, and Peace, he observed.

Inter alia, it will be certainly Interesting to see, whether, Tomi Ungerer's best Artistic Creations, mainly at the World-Famous Times of the "Sixties" inside the USA, would Help Inspire and ReVive also in Nowadays Europe a Similar "Magic" ambiance, mutatis-mutandis.

Even if we know, Nowadays, that, by having Left from the USA on 1971, he did Not have yet the Time to experience there Nixon's Recognition of China, Detente with Russia, Peace Treaty with Vietnam, End of Segregation, etc : Richard Nixon, indeed, was Not Only the "Watergate" impeachment scandal, But much More in World's History !

Let's cross fingers, and see what will happen, in that regard...

 

 

(.../..)

 

("Draft-News")

 

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    An "Eugenic" loophole Amendment, which might expose to Dangers reminiscent of "3rd Reich's" notorious Genetic Abuses, hidden at the last minute inside an otherwise Good, larger Health policy Package scheduled to be voted on Thursday, was strongly denounced by a coalition of MEPs from various Political Groups and Countries, in a Press Conference held this afternoon at EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

    Mainly calling to "Select Human Embryos", via "Genetic Counselling" and "pre-implantation" Techniques including "Genetic Tests", in order to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", it might open ways to Dangerous Practices in Future, they denounced in substance.

    But they also made it clear that a much larger Report inside which this Controversial Amendment "No 15" was added in dubious circumstances, officialy destinated to struggle against "Rare Diseases", and drafted by Professor Antonios Trakatellis, was otherwise "an Excellent Report", aiming at a "completely Uncontroversial target" of Health policy on which "all MEPs and Experts are united, believing that Europe should act" to protect People's Health (See "EuroFora"'s earlier News).

    The controversy came at a particularly delicate moment for the EU in relation to Citizens, at the eve of June 2009 EU Elections, and shortly before Ireland re-votes for "Lisbon Treaty"..    

- Denouncing risks of "an Eugenic demand, very similar to what we had during the 3rd Reich in Germany, but now coming from some Scientisists themselves", German ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Dr. Peter Liese stressed that critical MEPs were against "Eugenic" engineering with "Selection of Human Embryos", and anything which might ultimately lead up to to a "Selection of Human Race". It doesn't help to "eradicate" Human Lives, he added.


    Several Experts and NGOs expressed "Deep Concern", as f;ex. DR M.C. Cornel of the "European Society of Human Genetics", which stressed, on this occasion, that "the importance of Non-Directiveness in Reproductive issues is a Central characteristic of Human Genetics, after the Atrocities committed in the name of Genetics in the first half or the 20th Century".

     - "This is completely Unacceptable", stressed Italian Liberal MEP Vittorio Prodi, on the Controversial Amendment, also because pushes to "eliminate early Human Life", as he noted.

     - "This opens a Dangerous Road, rather a Motorway", denounced Danish MEP Mrs Margrette Auken, from the "Greens", observing that various similar attempts were made in the Past "not only in Germany, but also in several other Countries, "even at the 1970ies", "f.ex. on forced Sterilisation of Roma" People, and other criticisable situations f.ex. in the UK, in Sweden, etc. as she said.

    + Other NGOs, as f.ex. "LebenHilfe" from Berlin, added that, among various other Risks, could also be that, by exploiting the pre-implantation Genetic Diagnostics and the Selection of "healthy" Embryos, some may "propagate" several "Eugenic" aims, starting f.ex. by pushing to eradicate Human Livies which might "Cost too much" to preserve, ultimately exposing to dangers reminiscent of the "3rd Reich"'s atrocious abuses.

    In consequence, ChristianDemocrats/EPP and "Green" MEPs "decided by Majority to vote against" this Controversial Amendment, anounced to Journalists the 5 MEPs who participated in the Press Conference, representing a wide spectrum, from Liberals to "Greens" and ChristianDemocrats, and from Hungary, Italy, Germany and Danemark up to Ireland (Gay Mitchell), etc.
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    Hungarian ChristianDemocrat MEP Laszlo Surjan said "that it was "Suddenly, at the End of the Procedure" in Committee, that "appeared this (Controversial) Amendment, which has nothing to do" with the main purpose of the Report, on which all agreed.

    He denounced an "Unhonest" move, and called to "avoid this kind of unacceptable situations". Nobody should "Select People", Surjan stressed.

    - "We (MEPs) had No Chance to Discuss" this last-minute Amendment earlier added at a Committee's level, said German MEP Peter Liese

    Speaking to "EuroFora", Dr. Liese, the Spokesman of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group in EU Parliament, said that MEPs didn't oppose other references of the Report f.ex. on "Genetic Tests", because they were "no proposals" to impose them, while, on the contrary, there was "a Problem" if anyone attempted to "impose" f.ex. this or that Genetic Technique and "Genetic Counselling", etc. to the People on human reproduction.
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The precise Text :
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    Controversial parts of Amendment No 15 ask mainly "to lead finally to the Eradication" of "Hereditary" "rare diseases", "through Genetic Counselling .., and ..pre-Implantation Selection of healthy Embryos".

    But  EU Rapporteur Professor Trakatellis, said to "EuroFora" that fears should be alleviated by Guarantees that all this should be done only "where appropriate", when it's "not contrary to existing National Law", and "always on a Voluntary basis", according to other Parts of the Amendment.

    He stressed that the main aim was to allow "a free and informed choice of persons involved", without imposing them anything :  - "It's not an obligatory, but advisary" text, he said.

    To make that point clear, he was ready, in agreement with many MEPs, to eventually drop at least that part of the controversial Amendment which initially called for "efforts to ..lead finally to the Eradication of those rare diseases" "which are Hereditary".

    But, until late Wednesday evening, reportedly together with many other MEPs, he stood by all the rest of the controversial Amendment, (fex. on the "Genetic Counselling" and the "pre-implantation Selection of healthy Embryos"), so that critical MEPs, going from ChristianDemocrats as Dr. Liese, to "Greens" or "Ind/Dem", observed to "EuroFora" that "this was not enough" to close the dangerous loophole.

    Particularly since, as Professor Trakatellis noted himself, "this is already allowed to the U.K.", and "other National Legislations would probably follow, sooner or later" in a similar direction. As for a general call to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", this "should happen, at any case, in practice, de facto", to protect public Health.

    On the contrary, "our goal should be to help patients suffering from rare diseases, not to eradicate the patients. In case of genetic disease risk, the decision should not be guided by scenarios" made by politicians. "Perents who may decide to accept a child, even if handicapped or with genetic disease, must be respected and supported with solidarity", critical MEPs stated.

    - "Any Pressure" to "a patient or couple (who "should be able to make an informed choice consistent with their own values"),"from health Professionals, Public Health Policies or Governemental Institutions, or Society at large, should be avoided", stresses the "European Society for Human Genetics".

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Each MEP's vote will be registered !

-----------------------------------   

The Socialist Group requested a "Split vote" on the Amendment 15, first without, and afterwards with the words "lead finally to the Eradication" etc.


    But the first "split vote" leaves intact all the other parts of the Controversial Amendment, (i.e. "Genetic Counselling", "Selection of healthy Embryos", etc).

    That's why, 3 Groups of MEPs : ChristianDemocrats/EPP, "Greens/EFA", and "Ind/Dem", have asked for "Roll Call Votes", on everything regarding the Controversial Amendment No 15, and on the final outcome of the resulting Report as amended, which will register all the individual positions to be taken by each MEP.   

Something which will obviously make each MEP think twice before voting for one or another choice, to be sure that he/she will make the right choice in front of EU Citizens, particularly at these pre-Election times...


    Crucial Votes were scheduled between 12 Noon and 1 p.m. local Strasbourg time, in the middle of a long series of various other Reports, and after a long Public Debate on the larger Health policy package, from 9 to 11.50 am.

    The specific Report inside which was hidden the controversial Amendment is due to be debated between 11 and 12 am.

    So that more last-minute Surprises may not be excluded a priori...

    Particularly at the present Historic moment, when even the Institutional Future of the EU depends on the result of a second Referendum on "Lisbon Treaty", later this year, in ...Ireland, a mainly Catholic country, where People are particularly sensitive in such kind of socio-cultural and values issues...
 

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     (Draft due to be updated).
 
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