The Rampant Madness of Political Correctness

The following Austrian newspaper article is taken from last Sunday’s Die Presse, and was translated by JLH. Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff, who suggested the piece for translation, sends this introductory note:

Both the content of the article and the fact that it was printed at all amazed me. So much that I have decided to order the entire book by Reinhard Mohr, from which the article, kindly translated by JLH, was excerpted.

What surprises me is not only that an article like the rant by Mr. Mohr was printed at all, but that the Islamic Faith Community is silent. No letter to the editor, no complaints — nothing. Radio silence. Strange.

A technical note from the translator:

As you see, the last three paragraphs deal with Kiezdeutsch (American equivalent might be “project English”) which grew up in sections chiefly of Hannover, Hamburg (Reeperbahn) and Berlin. A “kietz” in northern Germany was originally where imported Slavic servants and others attached to a local castle lived.

There is some resemblance to Ebonics in that it has developed organically in partially closed-off areas of the city, then was discovered by academics who eagerly analyzed its grammar, spelling, etc., and told the rest of us that they had discovered the equivalent of an ancient Inca dialect.

The translated article from Die Presse:

“Only Otherness is Good. What is Our Own is Corrupted by Being Western”

by Reinhard Mohr
May 4, 2013

In false tolerance, we give more and more play to religious imperatives in the everyday life of our secular society . Is it racism to call attention to that? Or is it only calling by name facts we must deal with?

The charge of racism is the cheapest coin in the battle against the telling of inconvenient truths that are threatening someone’s world view. Barring schizophrenia, this seldom goes away. While the strident and colorful otherness of immigrants is celebrated in leftist multiculti discourse — not least as a nostrum against dull Germanness — its negative aspects are suppressed or denounced as fantasies of racist perception. While the culture, mentality, even the religion of the immigrants is downright admired, the problematic aspects of this otherness may be blamed only on ominous “structures” with their origin in the tendentiously repressive/fascistic German society.

So the notorious obligation of integration is entirely for the “bio-Germans.” And that is how immigrants are degraded to victims. Worse yet, to the empirical object of German morality preachers who will not let anything impinge upon their leftist faith.

Monika Lüke, 43, the new official for integration in Berlin who previously worked in Greenpeace, presented us with a special variation on the linguistic defining away of inconvenient conflicts. “The immigrants are not the others — we are,” she claimed, and thus “disappeared” any problem between immigrants and the majority population, purely through semantic magic. A super magic trick.

Also typical for this attitude of inflexible denial of reality is the reaction of the Greens
in Neukölln who declaim à la Radio Moscow: “With shock, we ascertained the discriminatory content of Heinz Buschkowsky’s new book, ‘Neukölln is Everywhere,” and are speaking out decisively against the many slanderous statements directed against Neuköllners… Through ill-considered and baseless fear-mongering scenarios, he is spreading a bad reputation for our district, which stems chiefly from his subjective perception of Neukölln reality… We declare our solidarity with all those Neuköllners stigmatized by his book… “ End of public statement in Politburo German.

That wasn’t enough. Even a question in district council about how to finance two- and three-wife Muslim men from welfare was reflexively condemned as discrimination and “stigmatization of Islam” which fosters populist resentments.

Cultural relativism. The Greens I remember were first and foremost interested in the role of the woman who is shunted off by a Muslim pasha with the children he has fathered into some residence somewhere and subsequently sent to social services or the job center. Forty years after the beginning of the women’s movement, pseudo-leftist cultural relativism has seen to it that even patriarchal polygamy is under the protection of the world improvement movement and must be defended from the unreasonable demands of the democratic, secular society. Before long — who knows — the burka may be seen as a symbol of feminine freedom. Sandra Maischberger gave a preview of it in her talk show. For the first time on German television, a completely covered woman sat in the studio and spoke about the joys of polygamy.

These are the times when I seriously ask myself: Am I reactionary now? Or are the others? Are they just gaga, crazy, not playing with a full deck? We old leftists are the ones — above all the committed feminist women — who “wouldn’t touch religion with a ten-foot pole,” as the saying went, to say nothing of less elegant obscenities. At most, we allowed ourselves to be dragged along to Christmas mass. Most of us fled to friends, as far as possible from incense and the sound of bells. That may have changed over time, but from where, all of a sudden, comes this heartfelt understanding for Islam — the only monotheism — which, unlike Judaism and Christianity — never really came in contact with the Enlightenment? And really, why the constant caution against “Islamophobia,” as if it were some serious, incurable disease?

Is it not true that Islam is the one religion in the world that presently produces the most and the most brutal fanatics? Do we hear loud protests from the Greens when hundreds of Christians are slaughtered by Muslim militias in the Near East and Africa? And how does this brave resistance to “Islamophobia” perform in the case of anti-Semitic anger, which appears in the battle against “Zionism” and “US imperialism” — above all in what remains of the “peace movement” which chooses to stand by Assad and Ahmadinejad, rather than the victims of tyranny?

After years of experience in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, Samuel Schirmbeck, ARD correspondent in North Africa from 1991 to 2002, draws his own conclusion. It fits in one sentence: “Islam is the sealing off of thought.” The old “68er” follows the discussion on the role of Islam in the Western world in amazement. “It’s insane — the left has always embodied thoughts of freedom — and fought against religious hypocrisy and repression. When you have seen for ten years how awful it is in societies without the Enlightenment, attacks on any criticism of Islam infuriates you. Is it still the burden of Nazi guilt that leads to feeling that the religion of foreigners is morally superior to one’s own culture?”

Might makes right. The question may be asked, but is unanswerable. In other parts of the world, too, false tolerance is spreading, giving ever more play to religious imperatives in the everyday life of our secular society — whether in the headscarf debate, or prayer rugs in schools, or meatless cafeteria meals or test-less days for Muslim students who are not allowed to eat in the daytime during Ramadan. For a long time now, so-called “peace judges” have been undermining legal criminal trials in a process whereby the winner is inevitably the chief of the clan — i.e., the strongest party there — who is awarded a settlement that is called an “amicable agreement.”

The Berlin labor court is also in the forefront of alleged progress. In March, 2012, it awarded a compensation of €1470 to a young Muslim woman who had applied for a job as a dentist’s assistant. Cause: the dentist insisted that she must not wear her headscarf during working hours. This requirement, the judge found, violated the right to freedom of religious practice.

And what about the Muslim operating room nurse? The judges have that figured out, and they raise a stern forefinger to educate the “folk.” “The woman with a headscarf is unemancipated and backward,” is the word in explaining the grounds for the decision. You can literally see the robed justices shaking their heads. In this case, they are religious philosophers, Islam scholars, historians and sociologists. “She is not wrong; she is just ‘other’.” There is the magic word — “other.” Other, not ours. Perhaps here is the comprehensive explanation for the riddle of the rampant madness of political correctness. Other is good; ours is bad and corrupted by the West. Thus the European-Western ego effaces itself to the point of self-denial, shrinks itself and nonetheless feels guilty for everything that happens. So the thinking and striving of the good German is to no longer be evil, brutal and unjust. As poet Matthias Claudius agonized as early as 1774: “It’s war, it’s war!/ Oh may God’s angel forfend/ and Thou please intervene!/ It’s unfortunately war — and I wish/not to be guilty of it!”

This desire to be guiltless persists today as the distorted reflection of the feelings of guilt and inferiority. Lack of self-assurance combines with fantasies of saving the world, enervation with hubris. In a Munich luxury clinic, we hear, crosses are taken down whenever fully veiled Saudi customers arrive to have stomach, legs and buns streamlined. That’s knowing your business.

I’m goin’ Aldi.* It is worth noting that also in the Berlin labor court good intentions seem far more developed than mastery of syntax and grammar. But even in this forward sector of progressive everyday life, help is on the way. A theoretical dental assistant in a headscarf, let’s say, tells a patient with a painful molar: “Yo bro, I whomp up a filling for you!” Whoever, in this situation, shouts in horror: “Hey, enough! Reactionary and discriminatory, whoa!” Let him be told: “Kiezdeutsch is not false or bad German, but a linguistic variant which is internally consistent.” — so says, at any rate, Potsdam Linguist, Prof. Dr. Heike Wiese.

And she knows still more: “New imperative combinations!” like “y’gotta” or “Let’s do’t!” are like dropping the preposition (“goin’ Aldi”) — the avant-garde part of a “new, dynamic turbo-dialect” which is “systematically and productively enriching” High German. Here, too, rightist populist anger must be cleared out: “My purpose is to work against prejudice — this is a reduced grammar.” “Go school, bro.” is the slogan of the future. German mainstreaming works like gender mainstreaming, to dismantle hierarchical structures and the arrogance of speech snobs.

Regulated public television has also set itself this noble goal and is enriching the wonderful variety of the German language by asking over and over, “Can Steinbrück chancellor?” The answer would be “Gotta wait election, homeys.” And the ad industry plays along too and drones messages into our ears, like, “That’s how tech rolls.” “Know the drill, baby,” grunts Horst Schlämmer in the background. And someone asks in between: “Want trouble, pal? You got it.” As you can see, everyday progressivism lives.

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

* Discount chain store

The Author — Reinhard Mohr (1955) is a German sociologist. He has written for TAZ, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Spiegel and Stern. This text is an offprint from his new book, “Am I Reactionary Now? Confessions of an old leftist,” which appeared in Gütersloh Publishing.

For a complete listing of previous enrichment news, see The Cultural Enrichment Archives.

6 thoughts on “The Rampant Madness of Political Correctness

  1. Suicidal self hating yahoos, are mentally ill….not rational human beings.

  2. “this desire to be guiltless”

    Is this not a key point in the article? it is a profound observation. Rank and file leftists wish to dissociate from what they see as national guilt, the guilt of the European colonialist. To be guiltles one must atone by ‘self-flagellation’ and to people with ‘pride’ self flagellation means self abasement to those they see as ‘victim’ groups.

    Thus they become ‘useful idiots’ to the master mainipulators who can ‘fan the flames’ of their guilt and thus totally control them, they become ‘zombies’ under the control of the ‘elite’ psychopaths propelling us to serfdom, all to assuage a perceived guilt at being human!

    Fundamentalist Socialism; the fanatical religion of the guilt riddled middle class!

  3. Quote:
    And what about the Muslim operating room nurse? The judges have that figured out, and they raise a stern forefinger to educate the “folk.” “The woman with a headscarf is unemancipated and backward,” is the word in explaining the grounds for the decision. You can literally see the robed justices shaking their heads. In this case, they are religious philosophers, Islam scholars, historians and sociologists. “She is not wrong; she is just ‘other’.”

    And what relation does this have to the germ theory of disease?
    So because Pasteur was a Westerner, does that make our desire for asepsis evil?
    Western surgery is done in a aseptic environment.
    If Muslims want their unsterile environment and risky surgery, then they should found Muslim hospitals and Muslim dental offices.
    Get over it.

  4. Nuns used to attend patients of all varieties, including surgeries, in veils. I’m thinking sterile headscarves to be processed the same as scrubs are. You want to wear a veil in a medical setting? Knock yourself out!
    I recall a few years back there was a flap in the UK about female medical personnel refusing to scrub in properly because they didn’t want to show their forearms. Was that resolved?
    The thing about a “common” language is just that; it is common and thereby all can understand the thought you are trying to convey in a precise way. American eubonics and the German version limit one’s ability to communicate to the broad culture and thereby self select for failure in the broader society.
    Back in the 90’s while living in SoCal I got into a rather heated discussion with some friends about eubonics. I maintained that if the Federal Gov. could send a small army into our schools every day to teach “English as a second language,” to non English speaking students then those Americans that spoke eubonics should be afforded the same help and funding. My thinking was that if you only spoke Spanish or you only spoke eubonics your predicted outcome would be the same. That is you would not be able to integrate into the general society. You know, the place where they hand out the jobs… To call anyone that voices this rather obvious observation a racist is absurd on the face of it.

  5. ” Before long — who knows — the burka may be seen as a symbol of feminine freedom. ”

    When I brought up the issue of muslim women being forced to wear the burka, a (now former) female friend of mine said “but they are no more forced to wear that than I am forced to wear high heels”.

    This woman who believes she is “forced” to wear high heels comes from a rich, white middle-class family, who fully accept her lesbianism. After getting a degree, she trained as a TEFL teacher and worked in that profession for a few years. She continued to dress in dungarees and continued to be “a radical lesbian feminist”.

    Somewhere along the line, she decided that low pay but freedom to dress as she chose was not as desirable as earning mega-bucks as a banking lawyer. So, she retrained, and to get on in that world had to conform to their dress standards and working patterns (working 80 hours a week as a junior lawyer, with no extra pay).

    She’s now a partner in a big firm. And she equates the choices she made in order to get that power, money and status the “choices” open to those muslim women who are deprived the opportunity of an education, or a range of jobs, or even to learn the language of the country in which they are now immigrants.

    This socialist feminist sees the “choice” that women make to wear the burka as identical to the choice she made to stop dressing like a car mechanic in order to become a partner in a commercial law firm. Thirty years ago, she would not accept that women chose to work for less money than men.

    The above details were all outlined to her in the last conversation we had, about 3 years ago.

    What you imagine as coming to pass, has already come to pass. These are the lies that people will tell themselves in order to justify doing nothing. Just like the christians in Germany who confessed that they just sang louder when they heard the trains passing by, containing jews on their way to the gas chambers.

  6. oops.

    she equates the choices she made in order to get that power, money and status the “choices” open to those muslim women

    should be

    she equates the choices she made in order to get that power, money and status TO the “choices” open to those muslim women

  7. The degradation of Hochdeutsch equates with what is being taught in UK schools today as English. Apparently the leftist establishment that controls school curricula regards standard English as elitist.

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