Blurp: Another level for my guardian angel

Boing. My guardian angel just gained enough experience points to level up again.

By utter coincidence and complete stupidity I managed to get in the middle of the action (again), watch riot cops charge into an otherwise very peaceful antifascist demonstration (again), wonder if I should do something heroic, see the streetlights reflect in helmet and clubs, decide against the heroic thing, and just shake my old head while the “riot” (which consisted of two small smoke-bombs thrown on the pavement from the demo, and lots of pushing and clubbing from the cops) went back & forth for my eyes.

And am completely unaffected by it. Physically (hence the xp for the guardian angel) as well as mentally. Only worried about the kids in the demo, or the people who were hit.

I just get very, very tired of this, it is so unnecessary. But I guess if they had let the demo walk peacefully to the end point, the tabloids would lack headliners tomorrow, and certain conservative politicians can’t scream for more police to control our neighborhood.

*sighs deeply again and congratulates guardian angel on another level*

Rant – NoBärgida – Xenophobes are scary people

Ok, definitively no fun, and secretly quite scary.. At the end of the protest against the Bärgida (the berlin Pegida spin-off) tonight we were left with so little people, the more violently minded of the other side felt secure enough in their numbers to actually break through the police lines and try to attack us (maybe we shouldn’t have sung they had a football-stadium ban…).

No fun at all when you see 20 of these broad-shouldered idiots storming towards you… and knowing on “our” side are elderly people, self-declared pacifists and in general, not that many people prepared for something like that.

If anyone still thinks the Pegida / Bärgida/ whatever-gida people are peaceful protesters, think again. As if the attacks on journalists a few weeks ago in Leipzig hadn’t made that clear.

And frikkin hell… this made clear to me again, how important it is to make a stand, be there and be loud… I’ll be there next monday, I’m afraid it’s necessary… I hope there will be more….

Blurp – NoBärgida (re-reprise…)

Luckily, Bärgida was really small (ca. 150), but the counterprotest numbers are dwindling too, down to ca. 500 today… I really hope we can keep it up as long as they keep it up.
The bad news is the other side is more and more openly fascist/racist, a group of right-wing hooligans made their presence clear, and they actually managed to march the few hundred meters they planned.

Well.. at least we’re still louder & my improvised sign survived the snow & made some people on our side smile (though I guess no german knows the double meaning of the (german!) word Glückskatze: multi-coloured cats bring luck according to (too ancient??) popular belief, humpf).

Short Rant – NoBärgida (reprise.. unfortunately)

Monday again…
Though Pegida is imploding, other “branches” seem to become even more willing to use violence (Leipzig), in Berlin last week, a group of hooligans joined the Bärgida, & also racist attacks against refugees & immigrants are increasing.
The now circulating call for mobilization for this monday’s Bärgida is trying to make the Berlin one the one that replaces the Dresden one.

I still think it is weird that politicians are willing to “listen” to the demands of the “Gidas”, when the counterprotests are that much bigger, and for example ignore the fact that the anti-TIPP protests two weeks ago with 50,000 people were much bigger than all the Gida marches together… So, who’s the frikkin “people” ??

Rant – NoBärgida – All that is necessary for the triumph of evil, is that good people do nothing

January 2015 must be the month I find myself more often shocked than ever before.. and I’m not easily shocked… (sorry for the long read…. but if you care, please do take the trouble…)

Today another Bärgida (the Berlin “spin-off” of the Dresden Pegida) march was planned, so were the until now successful counter-protests.

Though there were not more Bärgida people as last week (luckily…), our side was a LOT smaller, only 1,000. Still, they didn’t manage to march their planned route. Good atmosphere on our side, line dancing to Kurdish music, sharing hot ginger tea, a cinema along the Bärgida-route made it obvious where it stood (see pic), pogojumping up and down and making up silly songs to ridicule the other side.


After the protest, one of the Bärgida people, an elderly man, came to the other side of the fence to talk to us, something which I can appreciate, talk is better than shouting.
However. The guy was obviously well-read, and possessed the brains to process that information. But the result: the amount of (contradictory!) conspiracy theories I heard within minutes was…. amazing. The only one missing was the climate change conspiracy. All the other ones you might have heard of were mentioned .

So absurd, I could almost laugh about it, if his conclusions weren’t so damned scary. His opinions about religion, specifically islam, unions (after someone asked him if he realized he was walking together with declared nazis, he countered with, yes, but your side has the unions…errr…) or immigrants was plain… wrong.

I will never forget the faces of two young, probably turkish, girls, who were listening behind his back and realizing, he was talking (what to do) about THEM. They were so shocked… Other people kept trying to give arguments against his world view, pointing out the holes in his logic, referring to history, but he kept going on on the same track. And the scary thing, if you would (could!) accept his assumptions, he sounded almost reasonable…

Well…though I had trouble believing my ears, I got deeply and profoundly shocked, when in the course of the discussion the guy actually started to deny the holocaust…. This is also when people went to the cops to report him (denying the holocaust is an offense in Germany). I’m not a friend of reporting anyway, and in a way, I didn’t think the guy should be “punished” for the fact he was trying to seeking the discussion. But this.. No. Simply NO.

Open discussion yes… but this kind of “rationality”, based upon what a friend of mine described as “anti-history”, this is indeed where the train of thought goes far off track, facts don’t matter, and no common ground can be found AT ALL. This is were indeed reason stops, and an almost sect-like belief starts. And I can throw my naivety of “maybe, with reason and logic, we can take away the fear which brings these people to such intolerant behaviour” out of the window.

It was scary. And yes, the holocaust denial, I knew there were people around with this view, but to actually hear it.. I thought I couldn’t be shocked easily, but I was….to the deepest of my soul. How can someone deny the systematic extermination of millions of people because of their beliefs, their ethnicity, their political views or being gay?

What scares me the most, is that this guy was not some nobrainer who just wants someone to tell him what to do or a flag to follow…He might even be one of the people who is actually doing a pretty good job convincing others, by making some basic – plainly wrong – assumptions, and very rationally, somehow coming to the strangest line of arguments and conclusions. And who is not willing to readjust this line of thought when people point out how far his assumptions, or his conclusions, are from reality or based upon “facts” which are again and again proven wrong.

I’m all in favor of constantly questioning your own beliefs and assumptions, this is one of the reasons I wanted to hear this guy’s reasoning, but we bumped in such a tangle of paranoia and out-of-context taken facts or views, I just couldn’t even grasp the basics of it, it was too far out of my league: scientology sounds logical compared to it.
A discussion with scientologists is not possible, if this guy is representative of the “brains” behind Pegida, neither is a discussion with Pegida and their spin-offs possible.
All that remains… is shouting, hoping to be louder than them, and blocking their marches… Unfortunately.

And just because of the shocked faces of the two girls hearing what the guy said, if the Bärgida will march next week… I will be there to counter them. And the week after that. And after that…. As I hope many people will…. Maybe, if you would have witnessed what I witnessed this evening, you would. I hope. I sincerely hope…

Because, as cited at the Srebenica exhibition in Sarajevo:
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil, is that good people do nothing”

And though I do not consider myself one of the “good”… I can not just stand by and do nothing…

(another edit: djeez, I secretly am a frikkin hippie…unfortunately not one that shouts “let love win”, but “don’t let hate win”… shit…)