Eurovision 2016: Ukraine won and it’s alright it’s political

3 min read

The demand to have apolitical songs is nonsense. Even peace or freedom is political value. As well as transgender emancipation or international justice is. Where else was the problem this year?

I am always watching Eurovision since 2007 when my country first participated. I like this show because it’s a great opportunity when all Europeans can have a feeling of being an European. And we can see that this contest is political in its substance. The aim of it is a unity and peace of all European nations. Isn’t it political?

However, this year was special. The favorite didn’t win. The best song didn’t win. It was the emotionally strong story of the song that won. Before the Finals I didn’t intend to think that Ukraine could win but something happened in one moment during Jamala’s singing.

When she screamed in the time from 2:25 it was like hearing all of the 230 000 of Crimean Tatars who were forcibly deported by Stalin or the circa 100 000 of those of them who died because of it. In that moment I was sure that I will vote for Ukraine. And it was political. Not in the conspiracy way of the Russian propaganda. It was my free authentic and conscious choice. Something what I hope even Russian people will some day know.

Anyway, the Putin’s propaganda went crazy after the results. Russia won the heart of the European people. Ukraine could win only because of the votes of the special jury, as it is always done. People began to argue that Russia won but it’s corrupt because it’s political and Ukraine won only because the political goal was to support Ukraine against Russia. No evidence of that but a good conspiracy. However, I suppose that we all have a lot of these pseudo-news websites in our countries full of the Kremlin propaganda and we know they are good at it.

Maybe they are too good. Jamala said that she thanks to Europe. But I am skeptical about Europeans in this. The popular vote was won by Russia. And why? Their song really wasn’t the best, maybe the special effects. Are we Europeans really so superficial that we prefer this over the strong story of historical and international in/justice?

And most of the people, who began to argue that the Ukraine’s victory wasn’t fair because it was political and so on, weren’t the paid staff of the Russian propaganda. Mostly, they were only the naive Europeans. No offence, but we could call them useful idiots. And it is very problematic how so many Europeans aren’t immune to Putin’s propaganda. The Dutch people showed it to us a few weeks ago in their referendum.

However, back to the Eurovision. I don’t understand why the organizers chose this way of the results announcement. It was really stupid. Now it seems we have three winners. Of the jury – Australia. Of the people – Russia. And the real winner – Ukraine. And it’s weird.

I am not against announcing the results both from the jury and from the people. But it should have been done in another way. I would prefer if the correspondents from each country in the live entry said first the points from the jury and add the points from the popular vote. We would get all three information from every country and we would know the only one winner in the end as it always used to be.

Another problem is that this year Australia could win. It is European contest and it might be logical that there are countries such as Israel, Russia, Turkey or Georgia, but it makes no sense to have there Australia. But maybe our need to have it there shows that there might be a need for a global song contest.

Last thing I would like to mention is that we should realize how we decide who will receive our votes. Some people say that neighboring countries always support each others. If we look at the winners it doesn’t seem to be truth. Sometimes even the best special effects or the best music doesn’t win. What wins, in my opinion, is the message. And it is often very political and it is perfectly fine.

You can also read this article in Czech here.

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Author: Mirek Navrat

Political Science Student & Blogger from the Czech Republic. I write about politics, society, our future and personal growth. My Twitter: @mireknavrat.