The liberal value system prevailing in Western Europe since the end of World War II has created a tolerant, open society that allows diversity, freedom of thought and speech, and respect for human rights to flourish among us.
However if not in crisis, this value system is straining to cope with the ethical and social tensions generated among others by: technological innovation especially in the communciations field; intercultural disparities within societies; immigration; terrorism; and rising social inequalities.
In responding to these tensions, we need to update the expression of our values to make them coherent with the times, while enhancing the tolerant and liberal profile of Europe.
For instance:
When does the right to offend, that we allow, become equivalent to hate speech?
Under what conditions does the full observance of traditional religious customs contradict liberal practices?
What justification can be advanced for rigid surveillance of internet traffic, including its “censorship”, to combat say, “fake news”?
To what extent should an individual’s right to privacy prevail over surveillance measures intended to cover concerns related to internet and other criminal activity, such as tax fraud and hate speech?
We do not have clear cut, satisfactory replies to such questions.

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