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Why Conservative Youth of Europe | Oliver O'Brien

Updated: Jan 25, 2023

Originally published in the February edition of The Mallard

There is a presumption, by most, that all young people adhere to the new values that have been spread across Europe. This is a product of the revolutionary changes in standards, beliefs and the long established consensuses that occurred in the Twentieth Century. This is a false and misleading presumption.

It has become apparent to young people, like myself, that this new order is based on unsteady foundations. It does not provide us with direction nor hope, it is in fact based on a false reality that does not and will never exist. It is built upon the idea of tearing down sacred institutions and denying what is known to be true. It has become all too obvious how damaging this new way is, for far too often do we hear that term, ‘the Death of the West’.

That is why there is a need for a new European wide Conservative movement, to not only be a space where likeminded people can come together but also offers a beacon to draw all those who wish to question the new norm. It is also why there is a need particularly for a European wide Conservative youth movement, because as previously said this questioning is not unique to those of older generations. It is in fact one that has bridged the generational divide.

Conservative Youth of Europe (CYOE) is a group based on six timeless Conservative values of Faith, Family, Sovereignty, Liberty, Tradition and Human Dignity. It is these values that bring all true Conservatives together and it is these values that have underpinned Europe for generations. Many will consider these values and dismissively assert that we are harking back to a time long gone, they may even say that we are backward thinking and these values are not fit for the modern world. We are not so pessimistic, for we know that it is through these values that we can present a new Conservatism. A Conservatism that is modern but built on these values that we hold so dear. The membership of CYOE is made of people, including myself, that can testify to the power of such an ideology.

These common values are shared by many across Europe and beyond. We are engaging with European Conservative parties and their membership, to show that the answer to future electoral and political success is not the watering down of their Conservative values but a clarification and promotion of these values. This must go hand in hand with a change in culture and as such, CYOE is not just a political movement but a cultural one too. We wish to change our culture for the better and engage with the European youth to show that the Conservative way of thinking and, in reality, the Conservative way of life is one that is intellectually stimulating and emotionally fruitful.

The interest we have received has been overwhelming and we are grateful for all those that have come forward. However, there is always a risk of stagnation, meaning we must build on the momentum we have gained and engage with those from more and more nations. We already have representatives in several countries, but to be truly European wide we need to continue recruiting, and that we will.

CYOE proves what can be born out of a passionate desire within young people to see a positive change in society and seek out a hopeful alternative to what can at times seem to be an impending doom.

All writings reflect the views of the author and not necessarily the views of CYOE.

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