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A brief Letter to Santa (or how 2010 stole tolerance) --- by Nicoleta Sovre, MA Uni Peace

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Dear Santa,

On October 17th, newspapers presented Angela Merkel’s statement regarding German multiculturalism: an ‘utterly’ failure and that the idea of people happily living ‘side by side’ is mostly a metaphor.

The Economist in its edition from October 7th of this year, summarized Geert Wilders’, (leader of the Dutch Freedom Party) thoughts: “the Koran is the ‘Mein Kampf’ of a religion that intends to eliminate others”, “Islam wants to control, subdue and is out for the destruction of our Western civilisation”, a Koran stripped of its hateful verses, “should actually have the format of a Donald Duck.” Similar affirmations can be found also in the statements of other extremists leaders of northern countries - known as the epitome of ‘tolerance.’ In this sense, the Danish People’s Party believes that ‘There is no place for Islam in Europe and our first priority must be to repatriate the Muslims’ , ‘What we are facing with is not just a short term military operation. It is a question of driving this evil ideology out of the western civilization. Islam should never get a place in our countries’; the leader of the Sweden Democrats believes that “Through Muslim immigration and rapid propagation, as well as through Turkey’s membership in the EU, Europe can become dominated by Muslims.”

In addition to this, according to the statistics presented by the 2010 Annual Report of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights the anti-immigrant wind that blows over Europe is increasing.

So, Dear Santa, as the above mentioned facts raise critical implications upon the European discourse on multiculturalism and implicitly on human rights, could you please bring some more tolerance in your bacpack?

Xmas Nicoleta Sovre, MA Uni Peace