Charter 77 Meant My Liberation
The text of Charter 77 was written down during December 1976 in the former flat of Václav Havel and published in foreign media at the beginning of January 1977. The motivation for Charter 77 was the arrest of the members of the music band The Plastic People of the Universe. One of the first signatories was Ivan Medek and he still well remembers the reasons for signing the charter. “I signed Charter 77 due to my personal reasons because those people asking for our support had the right to ask. I also wanted to get rid of certain schizophrenia I lived in, and I am sure I was not the only one. It was the feeling when people can say everything at home and in the presence of their friends, but at work and publicly they cannot say anything. After signing the charter I felt liberated.” Right after publishing the text of Charter 77 their founding members were arrested and the first signatories had to face different reprisals, such as being fired. The response of the regime was publishing the anti-charter in Rudé Právo (the official newspaper of the Communist Party). Signing the anti-charter was on a mass scale and organised. Charter 77 had 1883 signatories up to the year 1990.
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