It would be sad that the proposals for the development of the European Union which are now starting to flow between the leaders of Europe, on the initiative of Emmanuel Macron, are only received with slightly cynical scepticism, with which national political milieu and short-sighted observers are so familiar.
If we take a moment and listen to them, we might wonder whether a Renaissance is possible in a society like this!
Since it does not involve gauging the degree of completion of a programme or the number of people who support this idea or another according to daily events or diplomacy; it means the quest for meaning which has gripped Europeans, as it has the citizens of all major democracies. It involves discussing the long-term goals that Europe would like to set itself. Will it want to still be one of the three major powers on the planet at the end of this century? What kind of message does it intend to carry forward in a changing world - one of freedom, democracy, solidarity? And just how far is it prepared to go to defend and promote this?
Everything else is a question of means, not the end!
By opting to address Europe's citizens directly, the French President has brought debate to the level of what is at stake. He has incidentally been joined in this move by some of his partners, by the successor to Angela Merkel at the head of Germany's first political party, by many intellectuals, economic and social stakeholders.
We have to accept the discussion of goals which we might share, before arguing over the means to achieve them; the opposite of what we are doing today. Once and for all we have to see that we are not starting from scratch, but from a construction which is a massive, unique success. Without the European Union our countries would have exited history after 1945. What we have accomplished was improbable back then; and we are not just talking about peace and stability, there has also been prosperity, protection, solidarity.
Building on a success is not the same thing as bouncing back after failure!
When the elites of our nations in Europe decide to believe this and stop hurling the worst, undeserved slurs and unfair judgements at this collective success, then they will have an opportunity of winning back the support of the citizens and of sharing with them clear, positive, real and in all likelihood, inspiring goals for the future of this continent of milk and honey!