Forget concentration camps — they’re so 20th century! The latest craze in Vienna is for “integration camps”, which help prepare Austrian citizens for the future by requiring them to adapt to the various cultures of their country’s immigrant population.
The tone of this program is playful, but the organizers’ underlying purpose is deadly serious. Many thanks to Hermes for translating this article from Krone.at:
Daring artistic activity
‘Integration camps’ for Austrians in the middle of Vienna
A spectacular project will take place in Vienna in the next days. A group of artists will put up “integration camps” in the city as part of the Festwoche [Festival Week]. Only for Austrians, of course. According to the promoters, in these places people will be able to heal their phobia about minorities. The FPÖ is in outraged.
This satirical action goes under the name “Austrians, do integrate!”. It was created by the Viennese artists’ group “God’s Entertainment”. “We turn the debate about integration interculturally upside-down”, the creators of this initiative say. “After all the dominant culture, the courses on integration, and the language courses which our fellow immigrant citizens have to comply with, now we call on the natives to do the same thing. We invite them to at last be part of the big, complete and perfect Austria.”
To begin with, an evaluation of the need to adapt is to take place in the camps, and at the same time each participant will also be evaluated to determine which kind of integration program he needs. “Pack A” covers the “low requirement”. In this case, the course lasts just a few hours. “Pack B” lasts at least a full day and (according to description) for a complete beginner on integration there’s the “Pack C”, which lasts 2-3 days.
Headscarf training, forced marriage, halal slaughter
Foreigners of various origins are supposed to be in the camp to instruct. “We have Serbs, Croats, Bosniaks, colored Africans, Turks, Kurds, Gypsies and Germans”, the organizers say. At the beginning, one deals in a playful way with problem-solving strategies. “If required, there will be offered also headscarf, forced marriage and home slaughter training”, the operators explained with a wink.
The first integration camp will be open from Wednesday through Saturday at the gates of the Urban Loritz Square. The second will be open from June 7 through 9 at the corner of Mariahilfe Street and Museum Square. The final one will run from June 14 through 16 in Meidlinger Square. Those wishing to take part will be received from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the camps. “From 18:00 p.m. we’ll offer just a general guidance for Austrians with no special needs”, the organizers say.
The FPÖ is outraged: “A monstrosity”
The FPÖ is, as expected, not taking any pleasure from this satirical project: “This is a monstrosity among monstrosities,” the speaker for cultural politics Heidemarie Unterreiner claims. She does not understand the reason why such monkey business is also financed from the generous funds dedicated to the Festival Week. “In marked contrast to this there are the festivals in Salzburg, which preserve a cultural concept to appeal to the audience, and which year after year delight guests from all over the world,” the FPÖ member says.