Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Failure of Multiculturalism in Germany

Chancellor Angela Merkel's recent pronouncement that multiculturalism in Germany "has failed, utterly" should not be a surprise to anyone who has been following what's happening in Western Europe over the past 25 years or more.

Before any intelligent discussion of the "M-word" can occur though, a clear definition of the term must be agreed upon by all involved.  So let's bring the facts to the forefront: Multiculturalism does not mean "multiple ethnicities".  Rather, if you agree with Multiculturalism then you believe that all of the following is true:
  1. All cultures around the world are absolutely equal.  Therefore, no one has the right to criticize anyone else's culture.
  2. Anyone relocating to a different culture should feel no compulsion to assimilate to that new culture.  There's no need to learn the language(s) of the new country, no need to learn their history, and no need to learn and follow their traditions.
  3. Those who have immigrated to a new country from elsewhere need not feel any allegiance or loyalty to their new home.
If you don't agree with all of the tenets outlined above then, according to the supporters of Multiculturalism, you are a close-minded bigot.  In addition, if you're German then you're probably a Nazi.

I very much support immigration and multiple ethnicities in my community of Vancouver and my country of Canada.  It makes for a much more interesting place, the variety of cuisines is greater, and, dare I say, the mosaic of very attractive non-Caucasian women is most appealing.  So, while I'm completely on-board with that, I've never supported the concept of Multiculturalism.  People moving to a new society need to adopt to the ways of their new home's culture.  It's great if they keep assorted flavours of their parents' homeland in their lives but failure to integrate with their new surroundings leads to a series of ghettos which immediately causes separation and eventually causes strife.  We see this very clearly in Germany and France and the DisUnited Kingdom today.  Hopefully this will never occur in Canada or the United States and I think that what's occurring in Western Europe is serving as a proverbial "Canary in the Mine Shaft" warning for anyone on this continent who has their eyes open.

Angela Merkel has long been the epitome of moderation.  I so deeply admire here courage to say such things publicly.  But I hope she owns a large umbrella because the fecal storm that rains down upon her now will likely be enormous.

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