2023: shaping the future of democracy with human rights

Celebrations and debates will mark the 40th anniversary of Argentina’s democracy on December 10. From CELS, we are proposing content and spaces for participation to foster the collective momentum to navigate the challenges we are facing today.

December 10, 2023, will mark the forty-year milestone of Argentina’s democracy. This anniversary calls us to celebrate what we have built: the condemnation of state terrorism in an organized society in motion, fighting for equality and the expansion of rights. Looking toward this date also prompts us to question the limits and boundaries of this democracy. Ultimately, it urges us to activate the political imagination to collectively think about how to build a democracy where human rights are a reality.

Over the past four decades, safeguarding human rights has been central to political and social agreements. However, today, positions favoring a democracy devoid of human rights find more support and legitimacy. We are traversing an era of assaults on memory and global advances by right-wing forces.

To engage in this landscape, we have decided to utilize the 40 years of democracy as an opportunity to ask questions. We envision a 2023 filled with activities and content to enhance communication, engage in public discourse, and promote gatherings for discussion, reflection, and enjoyment.

The first event will take place from March 20th to 24th at the 3rd World Human Rights Forum (WFHR23) in Buenos Aires, where we will participate in various committees, talks, and workshops.

Following the forum, one of our main annual gatherings will take place: the March 24th march. After 47 years of fighting for memory, truth, and justice, in 2023, we return to the Plaza with the certainty that we must reflect on the path taken and consider what needs to be built to address the questions of new generations.

With that impetus, in April, we will launch a new book in partnership with Siglo XXI Publishing: “Más que nunca” [More than Ever. Twelve Necessary Debates to Shape the Democracy of the Future]. Through chronicles that document human rights at risk in the present, we ask ourselves how to harness the memory and condemnation of state terrorism to play a role in the present, where obstacles to wealth distribution or addressing corporate responsibility in the socio-environmental crisis are evident; where violence and precarious lives are normalized. We also plan to discuss the debates in the book with others during a series of presentations.

The current scenario also compels us to ask: How much inequality can a democracy withstand and still be a democracy? To foster that debate, during May and June, we will also premiere a web series of fictional stories about accessing rights such as housing and food, along with a journalistic podcast on external debt.

In the second half of the year, on Sunday, November 5th, at Malvinas Argentinas Stadium, we will host a new edition of the Unstoppable Festival. An experience in which we seek to share the topics that concern us and in which we are engaged, through culture, art, and music. We believe that celebrating 40 years of democracy in Argentina is also an opportunity to engage, create, dance, and vibrate for a future with more rights.