MP welcomes apparent end of 'Ilves-esque' political correctness

Igor Gräzin.
Igor Gräzin. Source: (Eesti Meedia/Scanpix)

According to Igor Gräzin, who is a member of the Riigikogu for the Reform Party, there is nothing wrong at all with Estonia's political debate culture. If things had taken a "pithier" tone recently, thin-skinned reactions mainly came from a new generation no longer used to calling a spade a spade, Gräzin suggested.

"Today's generation of snowflakes simply isn't used to people expressing themselves in a more pointed fashion," Gräzin said on Thursday on Vikerraadio's morning broadcast.

The language used in Estonian politics was currently getting bolder again as a backlash to what Gräzin sees as a culture of over-emphasized political correctness, which he blames mostly on former President Toomas Hendrik Ilves.

Ilves "pounded political correctness into the heads of the Estonian people", and defined whole areas as well as expressions that were taboo, and which [the Office of the President] didn't let people talk about, Gräzin said.

"The issues of refugees, race, and also criticism of the European Union. This kind of thing," Gräzin said. Labeling the Estonian Conservative People's Party (EKRE) as right-wing extremists, almost calling them fascists, that was another, he added.

Gräzin quite obviously isn't a fan of the former president, referring to what he calls Ilves' "boorish" brand of "Socialist political correctness".

"It has been an extremely negative influence on Estonian culture. We wish Ilves a merry Christmas in Stanford, and that he won't make it here again to mess with our politics," Gräzin said.

According to the MP, the currently "pithier" way of talking to each other is a backlash to this political correctness introduced by Ilves. "If people express their irritation with this political correctness and evasive talk already in the Riigikogu, then this means that they really are sick of it," Gräzin added.

The available formats on social media also defined the way the debate developed, he found. Seeing as a lot of it was taking place on Twitter, the limited number of characters forced people to be more succinct.

"There is nothing wrong with Estonia's political culture. Estonians have simply been politically asleep for the past ten to fifteen years," Gräzin said, going on to complain about the "bumbledom" and boredom this had introduced, every political issue being treated with the enthusiasm and the language of a mid-level office clerk.

"If now politicians are beginning to call a spade a spade again, then in my opinion that's a step forward," he said.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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