As retarded as it may sound, this is big news in Germany
Imagine that there are people who actually take democracy seriously.
This is a frigging circus.
Aiwanger is the deputy state premier of Bavaria and the head of the right-wing populist Free Voters (Freie Wähler) party, with the state set to head to the polls for a crucial election in October.
Over the weekend, the Süddeutsche Zeitung reported that he authored a distributed a leaflet that made which contained mocking references to the Holocaust when he was in high school in the 1980s.
Aiwanger’s brother later said he authored the pamphlet, but the deputy state premier admitted that copies were in his school backpack.
It’s not something I would have admitted, if I were him.
He’s not dealing with reasonable people here.
One former classmate told local public broadcaster Bayerische Rundfunk that Aiwanger made antisemitic jokes following a class trip to a former Nazi concentration camp. By the end of WWII, nearly 6 million Jews had been murdered by Nazi Germany and its allies.
The class trip took place in 1987, when students in the high school class visited areas of then-East Germany, including an unnamed death camp memorial.
“On one evening, I was very upset that he made a joke about Jews, which I remember as being very repulsive,” the classmate, who asked to remain unnamed, told Bayerische Rundfunk.
The antisemitic remarks Aiwanger allegedly made as a teen were so offensive, that the classmate asked the news outlet not to publish them.
Aiwanger “also made a joke about children in Africa with malnourished bellies that I can remember very clearly.”
“It seemed to me that Hubert found this type of humor to be very enjoyable,” the classmate added.
In separate accusations revealed on Wednesday, another former classmate said the Bavarian politician at times made the Hitler salute when entering classrooms in high school.
The classmate told public broadcaster ARD that Aiwanger “very often imitated these Hitler speeches in this Hitler slang” and that he had “definitely” made offensive, hateful jokes about Jewish people.
How has Aiwanger responded?The scandal has sparked considerable outrage in Germany, with sharp criticism coming from opposition parties in Bavaria.
Aiwanger denied the latest allegations against him on Wednesday, but appeared to acknowledge some poor behavior in his youth.
“It is certainly the case that in adolescence, one thing or another could be interpreted in such and such a way that is in line with the things that 15-year-old me is being accused of,” the politician told broadcaster Welt TV.
“But in any case, I can say that since I reached adulthood, over the past decades, [I am] not an antisemite, not an extremist — but rather, a humanitarian,” Aiwanger said.
I believe you.
What I really want to know is: how has the Jewish community reacted?
The Central Council of Jews in Germany sharply criticized the antisemitic sentiments expressed in the reports and expressed disappointment in Aiwanger’s response to the scandal.
Josef Schuster, the president of the council, said the public conversation was no longer about whether the lawmaker learned from his past mistakes, but more about Aiwanger’s “response to the allegations, which is almost defiant.”
“If he belonged to certain groups in his youth where this type of rhetoric and these views were common, a willingness to address the situation should be especially important considering his current position,” Schuster told the daily mass-circulation Bild newspaper.
So the outrage is: someone is claiming that nearly 40 years ago, this man made jokes about something that is alleged to have happened 80 years ago.
We all grasp that the Holocaust is a religion.
But… whether it’s an Islamic or Catholic theocracy, no one is going to bring up stuff from decades ago, when you were 15 years old.
So, this is not simply a matter of the Holocaust having become the new religion, it’s also the fact that this is an extremist religion, beyond anything we’ve ever seen before, where rumors of past blasphemy can result in a total destruction of your life.
A fake religion like the Holocaust is not sustainable, but no religion that is this oppressive is sustainable.
The struggle is real