Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Xenophobia? Reloaded!

It's no news to me that Germans tend to be arrogant and condescending; the fact that there is no word for self-deprecating being a case in point. In Berlin, a city that thrives predominantly on foreigners, you witness racism every day. The other day I overheard a discussion whether it was acceptable to use »Jänner,« the Austrian word for January, in a German newspaper article!

I was just made painfully aware that this concerns the very centre of society, not just some fringe groups like the yellow press or lower classes. I was briefly browsing German headlines, something I don't do very often, and came across two articles published within half an hour concerning the Newtown, CT shooting.

Aber kann das Bild der Idylle in einem durchmilitarisierten, waffenvernarrten Land wie Amerika etwas anderes sein als eine gefährliche Illusion? [FAZ]
Derweil fordern Experten eine Verschärfung des Waffenrechts – und rühren damit an die Grundfesten des amerikanischen Selbstverständnisses. [FAZ]
I didn't bother to read the rest of the articles, but the tone in the teasers already shows such a violent aggression against the United States and as usual is linked with the apparently self-evident conviction of German superiority.

Given where this may be heading, not wanting to be on the wrong side could be one reason to live in Germany. But is it enough?