Happy birthday, Ion Cristoiu!

There are a few more hours and the topic I would like to write about these few lines will be classified. Confirming (for how many times?) Andre Gide’s unforgiving saying: “I call journalism what will interest me less tomorrow than today.” I am referring to the fact that, today, Ion Cristoiu is turning a beautiful age. Happy occasion to wish her the longest wishes of a long life, with new and solid accomplishments! Very true, the age that my formidable colleague of generation and guild reaches is not within the typical anniversary protocols, but, especially in the circumstances in which Romanian journalism has lost many valuable servants, to celebrate one of the most passionate members of our guild is the same as recognizing and respecting our values ​​and purpose.

I have been connected to Ion Cristoiu for more than five decades of friendship, all since November 1968 when, being a philosophy student, – he in Cluj Napoca and I in Bucharest took part in a national seminar organized under the auspices of the Union of Student Associations from Romania. We lived, then, new students and the university environment, the Romanian society as a whole, a time of political, ideological and cultural thaw. Thaw relatively, of course, but real, which has left its mark on our way of thinking and assuming our ideas. Unfortunately, this thaw – I repeat and strengthen: relatively but real – was ended by the aberrant Theses of July 1971, which triggered that disastrous process of cantonment in the patterns of unique thinking and the party-state. And, if I started these notations from an anniversary moment, the reality of the facts forces me to record that, this year, it is five decades since both Ion Cristoiu and the undersigned, we started working in the press.

I know very well what hot topic I open by making this mention, but I would not be honest, neither with myself nor with the readers, if I did not confess a thought on which I lingered more than once in the dialogues with Ion Cristoiu. Yes, it is very true that we have been journalists in these years, a situation (or fault?) That we acknowledge and assume! This does not mean, however, that we will let ourselves be judged and blamed by some outspoken, self-proclaimed censors of morals about whom both Ion Cristoiu and I know very well what political-ideological oddities they now carry and what they were. -they rejected it after December 1989. And maybe it’s not without interest to tell you a few things about an experience that, together with Ion Cristoiu, I had at the Academy Library. I picked up collections of the daily “Scânteia tineretului” and the weekly “Viața studențească” and opened the newspaper issues in which were published whole pages of hot and enthusiastic tributes to Nicolae Ceaușescu for his birthday, 26 January. See and don’t believe! Whole columns had been cut from the collections with a skilled hand, so that certain messages were missing – you can see that they were not critical – sent to the Carpathian Genius. Doing a little memory exercise ourselves, we also remembered who the signatories of some of the tributes so censored were and how eager they were to ask us to follow their pathetic messages.
Beyond the many and varied things that sometimes separate us, this would be one of the most solid causes of my respect and trust in Ion Cristoiu. Which made me, when I disagreed with his value judgments or certain attitudes, to say and write about it, openly and under my own signature. Without, however, this ever affecting our friendship. A vocation of dialogue that defines Ion Cristoiu but which, unfortunately, no longer painfully defines many steps of our public space.

Usually, when discussing the presence of Ion Cristoiu in the press and in the public life of the last three decades, one insists on the idea that he is a real, maybe even hard to match, newspaper maker, implicitly a discoverer and promoter of young people. talents in this coveted and so envied profession. But, if we read more carefully the testimonies of some of those whom Ion Cristoiu credited and supported, we will see that many, if not most of them, have in common the courage to seek the truth and to fight for it. for this truth to win vile games of interest and influence. I believe in life and work, which, to his credit, Ion Cristoiu is the first to respect in his efforts and, in this way, defines and reconfirms his formidable presence in our press.

These were some of the main reasons why now, shortly before the closing of the edition, I want to congratulate my confreres and friend Ion Cristoiu and I wish him many, many years in life and in journalism. Long live NE, Ion Cristoiu, because you really NE need us!

Source: Jurnalul.ro by jurnalul.ro.

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