Germany Struggles With Defining Meaning Of Itself

Throughout its history, Germany has struggled with issues dealing with immigration. Roland Koch, who has been dencouncing Muslim immigrants, claims “Germany is not a country of immigration” and has attacked “criminal young foreigners” as the source of crime and violence in his nation. Actually, about 15 million people or just under a fifth of the German population has an immigrant background. In 1945, the German Jewish population had virtually disappeared but today Germany is home to among the largest Jewish populations in the world. A “foreigner” essentially is anyone not of German heritage even though the person was born and raised in Germany.

Germany lags far behind Britain or France of the United States in the number of immigrants who hold police or civil service positions. “Multikulti” has become a dirty word which is used to describe “the other,” the person who does not trace his or her origin hundreds of years back in German history. Germany has done a magnificent job of confronting the horror of the Holocaust, now it is time to confront the intolerance toward Muslims and to those who are of foreign background.

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  • Oliver

    I wonder how it’s always Germany’s fault. If immigrants children drop out of school and hardly speak the language of the country they are living in, it’s no wonder they won’t find a job. Isn’t there something like personal responsibility for yourself and your children?

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    Gemany has done a miserable job of integrating foreign immigrants. I assume most immigrants came to Germany seeking work. Why else go there?

  • Oliver

    Reasons enough: Safety from natural disasters, diseases, landmines, civil wars, shall i go on?

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    My point is people want work. As far as I know, the presence of landmines in Turkey is a non issue and I don’t think they have any more problems with disease than Germany and there are no natural disasters to escape anymore than there is a civil war in Turkey. So, what’s your point?

  • Oliver

    The point is, Turkey isn’t the only country that people migrate from, although the largest group of them originate from there.
    Still no answer on why their children have such a hard time learning german. The children of the italians or spanish are far ahead in that matter. Why is that so?

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    Normally, children pick up a foreign language much quicker than adults. It is very unusual for children to encounter severe language difficulties. I am no expert on German education, but normally this type of problem arises if children are attending segregated schools or if schools fail to provide adequate education in learning a second language.

  • Oliver

    It’s because many of the turkish immigrants live in their own closed society in Germany. They have their own shops, the women often aren’t allowed to work, so the parents hardly know the language themselves. They send their children to marry someone from Turkey, and because of family reunion laws both can come back to Germany, with one of them never been to Germany before, not knowing the language. Then their children grow up in Germany, failing at school and after that they have no chance for a job. It’s not that Germany doesn’t give them chances, it’s just that many of them don’t even want to integrate. And now the whole world again is blaming the racist german society. Hmm…

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    You are describing large areas of America at the beginning of the 20th century. It is normal. It requires aggressive action to open up jobs and government opportunities. On the average, it took American immigrant groups at least a generation to begin effective assimilation. Do police forces go out and recruit Turks for the police?

  • Oliver

    I have seen documentaries about police officers from immigrant families being on duty in their own problem neighborhood. I would assume there’s not too many of them.
    The funny thing is, even the turks in Turkey make fun of the turks coming to Germany, because very often those immigrants originate from very backwards rural areas in Turkey, with extremely traditional views on religion, women rights etc. Their youth grows up with an absurd macho culture.
    Recently there has been the development of a german wannabe-gangsta rap genre, celebrating violence etc., just like the american origin.

  • http://www.theimpudentobserver.com Fred Stopsky

    The analogy in America is the immigration from rural Mexico.