Jews have been called the “canary in the coal mine.” Miners used to take canaries into the mines with them. When the canary stopped singing (and died), it meant that the gas levels were too high and the gases could explode or kill the miners. Underlying the metaphor is the realization that what happens to the Jews will befall everyone. Historically it seems that when bad things happen to the Jews, bad things happening to other groups of people are not far behind. During the Holocaust roughly eleven million people were killed. It began with antisemitism, moved to killing the Jews, the disabled, the mentally handicapped, homosexuals, and Christians who opposed the policy. The figure usually quoted is that six million Jews were killed during the Holocaust, but what happened to the Jews also happened to other population groups in Europe.
Yesterday Yahoo News posted an article reporting the following:
Germany’s government commissioner on anti-Semitism has warned Jews about the potential dangers of wearing the traditional kippah cap in the face of rising anti-Jewish attacks.
“I cannot advise Jews to wear the Kippah everywhere all the time in Germany,” Felix Klein said in an interview published Saturday by the Funke regional press group.
In issuing the warning, he said he had “alas, changed my mind (on the subject) compared to previously.”
Klein, whose post was created last year, cited “the lifting of inhibitions and the uncouthness which is on the rise in society” as factors behind a rising incidence of anti-Semitism.
“The internet and social media have largely contributed to this — but so have constant attacks against our culture of remembrance.”
And he suggested police, teachers and lawyers should be better trained to recognise what constitutes “clearly defined” unacceptable behaviour and “what is authorised and what is not”.
His comments came just weeks after Berlin’s top legal expert on anti-semitism said the issue remains entrenched in German society.
I don’t think that the problem is that antisemitism is entrenched in German society or the rise of the political right–I think the problem is that Germany is losing its national identity to Muslim refugees who have brought antisemitism with them as part of their religion. I suspect the ‘far-right’ is rising in response to what they see happening to their country.
In 2015 the following letter was written to the City Council of Munich:
Dear City council of Munich,
I am writing this letter to bring to your attention something that I and many Muslims believe is unfair and requires attention. I would like to inform you that the Oktoberfest is an Intolerant and Anti-Islamic event.
We tried to ignore the event, but there too many Un-Islamic acts done at the Oktoberfest. Such as alcohol consumption, public nudity etc.
We understand that the Oktoberfest is a yearly German tradition, but we, Muslims, can not tolerate this Un-Islamic event, because it offends us and all Muslims on the earth. We are requesting the immediate cancellation of the upcoming Oktoberfest event.
We also believe that the Oktoberfest might also offend all the Muslim refugees coming from Syria, Iraq,
Afghanistan. The cancellation of the Oktoberfest event will help refugees not to forget their Islamic history. Thank you for your attention to this matter.
I am not necessarily a fan of Oktoberfest, but if I were a German existing in the German culture, this letter would bother me. Here is an immigrant trying to change my country into the country he just fled. That makes no sense to me.