Many thanks to Nash Montana for translating the latest essay by Anabel Schunke from Roland Tichy’s website:
Say it through the refugee
by Anabel Schunke
The migration crisis has unmasked the hypocritical double standard about human dignity in these parts. And it reveals it daily anew. As a text by a Syrian about the homeless in Berlin shows.
“Berlin forgets the homeless”, says the title in Tagesspiegel. At first glance, it’s a headline that recurs and reaches across the full spectrum of politics in the local media. Every year towards fall/winter: the question about the placement and housing of Germany’s homeless. Each year the answer turns out to be as shameful as in previous years. Just like in other countries we look away when it comes to the weakest within our population. Nothing pretty, but also nothing new.
Nevertheless, this text is remarkable. First because the actually rather left-leaning Tagesspiegel has put itself into the politically incorrect minefield of comparing the domestic population with refugees. And on the other hand because the author of the text is a refugee himself. And maybe it is exactly that factor that will close the politically incorrect gap that the comparison had caused in the first place. Because refugees are allowed to say things that we aren’t allowed to say. Just like earlier generations of Muslim immigrants, who in the meantime at times are also called Nazis. The politically incorrect elevates itself through the politically correct use of the refugee as a mouthpiece. An act of genius, in fact, although a deeply dishonest plot.
The good leftist racism
And here as well the good leftist racism shows itself, exactly as described by Gideon Boes: “bad racists, good racists, and Islam.” Meaning: Refugees are not subject to the same impeccable moral expectations of political correctness as are the domestic population and their writers. When the Turkish neighbor forbids his wife to go outside, this is merely a cultural peculiarity, but woe to the chauvinist that “genders” incorrectly at the university. Similarly with our refugee author: while the comparison of asylum seekers with parts of the domestic population may be yucky, and even worse “right-wing populist”, when it is the refugee himself who calls attention to the unfair state of affairs, then that’s totally OK. Finally the Gutmensch editor doesn’t have to wash his brain out with soap anymore after reading approving articles on ‘Tichy’s Einblick’ or ‘Achse des Guten’. Instead he can now say it directly through the refugee.
For a long time we have only been allowed to bloviate in the abstract, theoretical sense about something like dignity, while the Syrian author of the Tagesspiegel article shows us how practically every day dignity is violated in our society:
“In Syria we had no homeless; we had poor people. But in any case they didn’t sleep on the street. They had family or they were beggars who sometimes had more money than you yourself. To see homeless people is entirely new for us here.”
It is he who, through the good racism of a society that is beyond all measures stunted, and that has become paralyzed through political correctness, becomes the child from Hans-Christian Andersen’s tale “The Emperor’s New Clothes”. Who says that which all others secretly think, but he’s allowed to say it because we are ascribing to him those same childish-naïf attributes.
Meanwhile we Germans discuss dignity in theory by means of a fictitious example. Whether it is legitimate to shoot down an airplane carrying 164 people if the death of 70,000 people in a soccer stadium can thereby be prevented. Whether these fictitious people in their fictitious airplane containing fictitious terrorists through facing fictitious doom would lose their fictitious dignity if we fictitiously shot them down while exactly in that moment everywhere and repeatedly in this country many real people have their real dignity groped and infringed upon in a very real fashion.
Inevitably the question comes up about dignity itself. How we define it and who decides it; when it is regarded as infringed upon and when not. Because even our Constitution is not what God gave via a Moses-like middleman to us Germans. And the judges on the Supreme court aren’t God’s messengers. Hence the question about the substance of such a vague concept, and the risks as a consequence thereof, are entirely appropriate, while still not calling into question its basic existence.
Dignity is — as I have said already — a nebulous concept. The danger of its erosion is a constant. Who is doing the eroding is defined in this case through the current political climate: In recent decades in Germany it’s mostly been through the left-green media and minority groups of all kinds — Muslim support groups leading the way — which would all have each other’s backs.
What has resulted from this is a state that lets us discuss right and wrong into the finest ultimate detail — all the way to the remaining lifespan of fictitious airplane passengers and the cost of the lost dignity of these people when we take these last seconds, minutes from them — but all this completely hides the factual condition of our relationship with dignity.
Because of course the Syrian author is absolutely correct. Just like the German “Schmuddelkinder” [“The mucky pups”, the grubby kids, based on a song by Franz Josef Degenhardt, “Don’t Play With the Mucky Pups”, from 1965], who could be compared as well, and whose Schmuddelkind status is only constituted in so far as that they aren’t Syrian refugees. They are not new in this society, and they don’t belong to the sacrosanct Islamic culture to whom one — with sympathetic lordliness — concedes a few faux pas here and there.