Cittadinanza europea, diritti culturali, esclusione sociale
Social exclusion poses problems a ecting the strength of any democratic system and these problems are reflected into the European Union, which is going through a particularly complex time. People with a low level of education, in fact, are o en not able to participate in political decisions and the principle of popular sovereignty, pillar of any democracy, results thus weakened. In Europe, an entire group of almost ten million people, the Roma and Sinti, generally experiences di iculties in accessing to the primary levels of education. In the absence of a uni- fied transnational political organization, Roma and Sinti are, in many national States, o en the addressees of decisions that may accentuate discrimination rather than eliminating it. In some EU Member States such as Italy, then, there is also a percentage of ‘functionally’ illiterate people, that is, people devoid of cultural tools necessary to understand the social phenomena involving them: they can only su er the consequences of those phenomena. The EU must work to ensure that the most disadvantaged people can overcome the obstacles hampering their responsible participation into political life; the right to education is the first and fundamental among cultural rights on which all other social and political rights of the citizen rest. The European citizenship, detached from the nationalistic tendencies still present in some Member States, guarantees the e ective enjoyment of fundamental rights to everyone and lessens the presence of discrimina- tion. The European Parliament, elected in May 2014, must encourage the choices of governmental organs, at local, national and European level, to fully achieve this objective.