The government has once again used vaccination registration emails for campaigning purposes, this time for promoting their controversial child protection referendum. Earlier, they promised that these collected email addresses would only be used for informing citizens on vaccination against coronavirus.
In this latest letter, they bring in the ongoing war in Ukraine as an argument in a bid to urge people to participate in the referendum, to be held together with the general elections this Sunday.
“Today, when there is a war raging in our neighborhood, the most important question is whether Hungary will get involved in the war or stay out of it. This is the concern of the majority of the Hungarian people. Our goal is to continue to preserve our country’s security. However, our future also depends on whether we can protect our children (…),”
reads the argument, which then explicitly calls on recipients to vote with ‘no’ to all four questions.
- Do you support children in public schools participating in classes demonstrating sexual orientation without parental consent?
- Do you support information about gender change treatments being given to children?
- Do you support media content of a sexual nature affecting the development of children being presented to them without any restrictions?
- Do you support media content presenting gender change shown to children?
The government explicitly promised that the email addresses gathered to inform people about coronavirus vaccination would only be used for that purpose. This is not the first time they have broken this promise, however.
A few weeks ago, these emails accused the opposition of trying to send weapons and troops to Ukraine and that they wanted to prevent gas supplies and abolish utility cost cuts. After the court reprimanded the government, the next email did not describe exactly who they were referring to, but said that “some would include the energy sector” in the scope of sanctions against Russia, which would “disproportionately harm our country.”
Last Tuesday, those who had signed up for the vaccination received another email from the Government Information Center, saying that “some leaders in Brussels want to punish Russia at any cost” and that there are “some actors in Hungarian public life who support these ideas and would even “turn off the gas tap.”
In early March, Hungary’s Supreme Court, the Kúria, had already condemned the Fidesz-led government for sending campaign messages, or rather harsh and deceptive criticism about the opposition, to those who had registered for the coronavirus vaccine. However, the Constitutional Court has annulled the ruling of the Kúria, arguing that the government only “fulfilled its obligation to inform.”
featured image via László Beliczay/MTI