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  • Amok Mama: Stuff you’re not allowed to say


Amok Mama: Stuff you’re not allowed to say

Jacinta Nandi wonders whether sometimes people's manufactured outrage is just that – manufactured outrage. Especially when there are real things to be outraged about out there.

Whenever people from ethnic minorities criticize anything – anything – from racism to the price of potatoes, from the food to drawbacks of the school system, then people – racist people (you have to be racist to say this sentence) will often say: “Why don’t you just go home if you don’t like living here?”

The people who say this sentence never think about homesickness, can’t imagine that these alien forces invading their country could ever feel an emotion like homesickness – they don’t think Turkish taxi-divers have the right to yearn for the sea in Izmir, don’t think that cleaners from Chile should be allowed to long for curanto. This is because they don’t want foreigners in their country in the first place. These people are here, but they don’t want them here. They’re racist people. It’s okay.

I don’t mind racists. Not really. It’s liberal Germans I really despise. I don’t despise neo-Nazis. They want us dead, they hope we die, they’d like to kill us. But liberal Germans aren’t like that: they’re cowardly, they’re complacent, they’re verlogen. They say crap stuff like: “Die Ton macht die Musik” when you argue with them on Facebook. They get annoyed about crap things which don’t matter. These are the kind of things liberal Germans have got annoyed about, this year, in no particular order:

– freelancers having to pay more tax

Christian Wulff sponging a holiday

– some kid getting upset about Sarah Kuttner using the word ‘Neger

– Lothar Matthäus thinking einkaufen and schoppen are two distinct concepts (he’s right, by the way)

– the Pirate Party and the whole Urheberrecht thingimajig

These are the kind of things they very patently do not give a shit about, like these are the things which they could not give less of a fucking shit about:

– the police not investigating racist terrorist murders because the murder victims had brown skin and non-German roots and thus were obviously (dur) criminals

Mely Kiyak

– having a racist president (Hauptsache, he pays for his own holidays)

– the Pirate Party being a bunch of Nazis

The neo-Nazis want us dead – and liberal Germans don’t give a shit. They don’t give a shit. They do not give one iota of shit whatsoever. Liberal Germans have betrayed and abandoned ethnic minorities in Germany. Whenever you try to talk to them about it, they give you some mealy-mouthed excuses about how some kid in Wedding called them a Hurentochter at a bus-stop once. Boo-hoo. There are whole swathes of East Berlin nobody slightly brown or slightly gay or even slightly expat can go to, whole swathes, boo-fucking-hoo. And all that crap about the “Turks” and “Arabs” being all homophobic? You see lesbians and gays walking round hand-in-hand down Weserstraße all the time – the “Turks” and the “Arabs,” i.e. the Feindbild ones, are no more homophobic than neo-Nazis – but liberal Germans don’t give a shit.

I met up with my boyfriend for cocktails last night.

“So,” I said to him. “Another German person wrote a stupid thing on Facebook about Sarah Kuttner yesterday.”

“Yeah?” he asked. “Was it an actual mate or just someone you know?”

“Kind of like, just someone I know. But he’s a nice enough guy, you know? And then he’s all, like, oh, I haven’t mentioned Sarah Kuttner for a few weeks, what’s wrong? Das wird man doch noch sagen dürfen, oder? Again and again and again and again.”

“All of my mates stopped going on about it about a week ago. I think your Facebook friends are more right-wing than mine.”

“They’re not!” I screeched. “They’re total liberals. Some of them are even lefties! They all vote Pirate or Green. Maybe SPD. I bet I don’t have one conservative friend on the whole of my friends’ list. And they just think – they really genuinely think – they actually believe – that the worst thing that has ever happened in Germany ever, ever, fucking ever, is that some kid was at a reading where Sarah Kuttner said the word ‘Neger’ and he called the police. I mean, is that the worst thing what ever happened in this country? Is it? The cops didn’t bother investigating Nazi terrorism because they assumed innocent businessmen murder victims must be criminals because they were non-white and had been murdered – is that the worst thing that’s happened in this country? He’s sitting in the fucking audience, she’s going on about her ‘Negerpuppe‘, everyone’s cracking up, he thinks: what a bunch of Nazis and he calls the fucking cops? Is that really the worst thing that has ever fucking happened in this fucking country? She called her doll a Neger – the black boy called her a racist. Das wird man doch noch sagen dürfen, oder? Or does the still being allowed to say stuff rule only count for black dolls?”

I gulped my champagne cocktail down. It had an olive inside and a sticky cherry on top. It was basically the most delicious thing I had ever tasted in my life, ever.

“Sarah Kuttner being angezeigt is not a Schande. The cops not investigating the Dönermörde, that was a fucking Schande. It was a fucking Schande. They should be so upset about that. They should be so angry. They should be so fucking outraged. They should be up in arms. But they’re not. They don’t give a shit. They’re too busy getting all het up about Sarah Kuttner’s artistic fucking freedom. What about Mely Kiyak’s artistic freedom? They don’t give a shit.”

“Oh, come on, Jacinta,” said my boyfriend soothingly. “That’s not racist of them. If Mely Kiyak had been naked on stage at the Volksbühne and cutting up a goat and then she’d screamed: ‘Thilo Sarrazin is a paralysed Nazi!’ into the audience, they’d be all defending her like there’s no tomorrow. It’s coz Sarah Kuttner was reading from a book. You know what they’re like about art, is has to be all free and that. Kiyak is a journalist. Art is meant to be free. They’d probably let a paedophile eat a dead foetus on stage if he did in the Volksbühne. With his mouth open. They’re not being racist; they’re just being generally insane. Don’t get paranoid.”

“Huh,” I said, sulkily. “Maybe we should move back to Britain?”

My boyfriend burst out laughing then. “I’m going to design an instruction manual for you,” he said, cheerfully. “After her second cocktail, she thinks all men are rapists, after her third cocktail, she thinks all Germans are Nazis, after her fourth, she wants to emigrate and after her fifth, she wants to suck you off in a taxi…”

“We wouldn’t have to live in London,” I said. “We could live by the sea. We could write novels. We could write novels in our own language. We wouldn’t have to watch Have I Got News For You on YouTube or Columbo on Veetle. We could just watch normal telly and that, and then walk by the sea – I’m thinking Devon, somewhere, the wind in our hair, we could wear those cable-knit jumpers and walk along the sea– and then come home, have some tea and write a novel.”

“If we lived in Britain, you’d just watch David Mitchell all day long on panel shows. You’d never get a sentence finished. Anyway, you can’t emigrate just because German people do annoying status updates. What about all those “God Save the Queen” ones? I counted all my “God Save the Queen” status updates. I had 12.”

“Yeah,” I said. “Liberal Germans are cowardly and complacent and that. But they’re not total morons.”

“I’ll order us a taxi, then, shall I,” said my boyfriend. “It’ll save us having to wait for a bus.”