I’ll never forget a painting I saw at a West Berlin youth hostel in 1985. The background depicted bombed-out ruins, presumably Dresden after the Allied firestorm. In the foreground were two women, their backs to us as they faced the charred, blown-out buildings. One woman was starting to lift her arm in a Sieg Heil salute, while the other rushed to grab her arm and stop her.
What a weird image it was, mixing national pride with national defeat and national self-loathing.
After World War II ended, no nation on Earth has been force-fed as many Guilt Sandwiches as the Germans, despite the fact that they’d lost seven to nine million of their own Volk in that conflict. One never hears about “the nine million.” It’s nearly verboten to even mention them.
When I saw that painting in 1985, Germany had already endured four decades of post-WWII shaming. Despite all that, I knew that sooner or later, that one lady would tire of holding down the other lady’s arm.
Sixty-five years after World War II’s end, Germany is finally becoming OK with being German again. On October 16 while addressing her Christian Democratic Union party, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said:
In Frankfurt am Main, two out of three children under the age of five have an immigrant background.…This multicultural approach, saying that we simply live side by side and are happy about each other, this approach has failed, utterly failed.
Loud applause greeted that last sentence.
For five years running, the stout, doughy Merkel has been Nummer Eins on Forbes magazine’s list of “The World’s Most Powerful Women,” so her statement is no small potatoes. But only a month earlier, Merkel was telling Germans that they should get used to seeing more mosques in their country. She was also condemning Thilo Sarrazin’s “absurd, insane opinions” as expressed in his shockingly popular book Germany Abolishes Itself.
It’s unclear why Merkel has suddenly shifted her ample hips rightward. She could be responding to recent polls showing that six in ten Germans would like to see Islam restricted, three in ten say they feel their country is “overrun by foreigners,” seventeen percent say that Jews have an undue influence over German affairs [oops!], and thirteen percent say they’d welcome a new Führer [now hold it right there!].
There go those pesky Germans again, refusing to hate themselves. How dare a German say anything besides “I’m sorry” for the next thousand years?
I don’t see the upside to our newer, more multicultural America. The only thing we share is the currency, and maybe that was the point all along.
Everyone expected the Germans to get an attitude sooner or later—after all, they’re the Germans. What seems more troubling, at least to the sworn enemies of All Things European, is that all of Europe seems to be getting the same attitude simultaneously.
What one might refer to as indigenous Europeans—you know, the palefaces, the Ice People, the Ghost Men, the Evil Aryans, the Abominable Snowmen—are beginning to chafe at the iron rainbow to which they’ve been yoked since World War II. Geert Wilders has blossomed into a political force solely by promising to protect Dutch culture from Islamofascism. An anti-immigration party just placed twenty anti-immigration asses into the Swedish Parliament’s seats. France is goin’ wild banning burqas and sending the Roma packing. The Swiss have flipped the bird at minarets. Putin’s brand of post-Soviet Russian nationalism is insanely popular, at least among insane Russians.
Even in the self-loathing, culturally obsequious, crushed-and-bleeding former empire that is the UK, comments in response to Merkel’s proclamation were lopsidedly in favor of what she said. Most of the anonymous online whisperers, presumably British nationals, agreed that multiculturalism was a colossal failure in their country as well.
Reading the comments, I saw parallels between Europe’s brand of “multiculturalism” and the American product. Both hither and yon, there’s anger about racial job quotas, oppressive speech codes, and double standards regarding who’s allowed to show ethnic pride.
What’s important is the way multikulti has unfolded and where. You don’t see such sensitivity training being forced upon anyone in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, or South America. You don’t hear China, Japan, or Israel being lectured to swing open their doors to foreigners. Almost exclusively, multiculturalism is a psychological marketing program designed for majority-white countries. Often, it is sold with the idea that whites are paying a historic debt, are reaping what they’ve sown, that what goes around comes around, that the wheel has turned full-circle, the chickens are coming home to roost, and that it’s time to pay the swarthy piper his due.
Country by country, continent by continent, there’s a sense that the newer, darker arrivals are receiving preferential treatment over those who’ve been there for generations. In the UK, it’s called “Positive Discrimination.” In America, it’s called “affirmative action” and “amnesty.” And across every border where whites are a majority, there’s a creeping sense that politicians don’t give a **** about how they feel. They never asked for these new waves of immigrants, and they had no choice in this odd social-engineering experiment that’s demolishing whatever they used to share as a common culture.
Suddenly, this doesn’t seem so much like a celebration of all cultures as it does punishment of a specific culture. And that doesn’t sound like such a swell recipe for having everyone get along.
We’ll be continually reminded that European satellite nations such as Canada, the USA, and Australia were settled atop indigenous skulls, so the land-grabbing descendants of those race-murderers have no right to whine about being gradually wiped out themselves by newcomers.
Once again, for Christ’s sake, whether he’s dead or alive: Two wrongs don’t make a right. If colonialism was wrong then, it’s wrong now. Multiculturalism is merely colonialism with a prettier name. I realize and concede the fact that it awards us with a dazzling array of ethnic restaurants unparalleled in their tastiness.
Under multiculturalism, we have a wider selection of food…and no one talks to anyone anymore. Many of us now speak different languages and wouldn’t even know how to talk to one another. Rather than erasing borders, multiculturalism has merely created new borders within borders. Rather than destroying nationalism, it creates mini-nations within nations.
If we’re going to push multiculturalism’s glories, shouldn’t we point out where has it worked in the past? If diversity is a strength, why did stretched-too-thin empires such as ancient Rome and the Soviet Union eventually fall from the weight of their own diversity?
Stop calling me a racist and shoot some believable answers at me. I really want to hear them.
As always, the “chattering classes” are working out their postcolonial guilt complexes at the lower classes’ expense. Either they’ve known what they were doing all along or they haven’t, and I’m not sure which is worse.
It’s dangerous to ignore the fact that all the technology in the world, the ceaseless multicultural brainwashing that’s been laser-beamed into our eyeballs over the past 65 years, has not eradicated the basic human tendency to be tribal. If they didn’t fully murder such instincts in the Germans—and God ****ing knows they tried hard with the Germans—maybe such instincts can’t be killed.
Yes, I realize we’re all human. If that’s your point, you’ve already made it—and, I might add, at a tremendous expense. What you fail to realize is that humans tend to be tribal. And if you get too many tribes, you don’t have a nation anymore.
I guess we should celebrate the fact that even though no one speaks to one another anymore, at least the people who aren’t speaking to one another are more “multicultural” than they used to be back when people actually spoke to one another.
What kind of newly enriched and suddenly empowered American culture do I see when I drive on the highway near my house? I see Wal-Mart, Chili’s, Motel 6, Wendy’s, and Home Depot. It could be Indianapolis. It could be Omaha. It could be Seattle. It could be anywhere in America. It happens to be Stone Mountain, GA, but you’d have no idea you were even in the South. In 2010, the only cultural landscape we share consists of familiar corporate logos. There’s no local flavor, no sense of indigenous culture. Things don’t seem richer, livelier, and more colorful; they’re empty, listless, and dead.
At least that’s how it feels to me. I don’t feel as if there’s any glue, cohesion, or sense of belonging in this society anymore. I’m feeling the anomie something awful. I don’t see the upside to our newer, more multicultural America. The only thing we share is the currency, and maybe that was the point all along.
Multiculturalism has failed, but it has only begun to fail. Now what? After constant states of flux, our society now seems fluxed-up beyond repair. How do we sort out the mess while avoiding more Trails of Tears?
Multiculturalism is dead, sure, but what do we do with the body? I’ve yet to hear a good burial plan, and I fear we may need one.
And what makes me most nervous is that I’m not even sure who “we” are.