The Shame of Living in an Authoritarian Democracy

In Hungary, Nationalist Politicians Help Themselves (and Their Lovers) to the Spoils of Power

I was a young man studying journalism when conversation about the first Fidesz government in Hungary broke into our dining room. It ended with a dead political silence in my family.

It was 1998. Before that, the debates during family lunches on Saturdays had never been particularly meaningful; we never listened deeply to each other. I usually wanted to express to my parents my disappointment and hatred towards our leading politicians. But the rise of Fidesz—a conservative party led then and now by Prime Minister Viktor Orban—changed the dynamic in our …

How Ordinary Hungarians Stepped Up to Help Refugees

We Couldn't Remain Indifferent to State-Sponsored Inhumanity

On that first day in June, I stood in a Budapest train station with half a dozen people I didn’t know, wondering if I had the skills or stamina to …