German immigrants launch #MeTwo campaign against racism

Germany let more than a million migrants into the country in a very short time. The idea was that these asylum seekers would play by the rules and be accepted as part of German society. The reality hasn’t always been as simple. Now some immigrants have launched a hashtag campaign to complain about what they see as the everyday racism of Germans against immigrants. From AFP:

Thousands of immigrants in Germany have taken to Twitter to share their experiences of everyday racism under the hashtag #MeTwo, inspired by a Turkish soccer star who recently quit Germany’s national team citing racism.

The hashtag has become a rallying point for scores of second- and third-generation immigrants in Germany, who have taken to Twitter to share their accounts of everyday racism and how they still struggle to be accepted as Germans…

“We need to redefine what it means to be German,” [journalist Ali] Can, who kicked off the #MeTwo debate, told The Associated Press on Monday.

“No matter how much immigrants want to integrate into German society, they will not be able to do it on their own,” he said. “Everyone here needs to help with integration.”

Among the #MeTwo tweets, many complained about discrimination based on skin color or wearing a headscarf. Others denounced some ethnic Germans’ assumption that even third-generation immigrant children do not fully belong as “Germans.”

Of course, it’s easy to side with people who are being mistreated because of their skin color, but this campaign doesn’t seem to recognize that there are plenty of immigrants in Germany who are not necessarily looking to integrate or play by the same rules. In fact, according to a recent report, there are tens of thousands of immigrants who are currently on the run from the police. Legal Insurrection notes a story by the German newspaper Die Welt:

An estimated 126,000 illegal immigrants set for deportation from Germany have slipped through the fingers of immigration authorities, German Federal Police office (BKA) disclosed. German police hope that some of these illegal immigrants may have voluntarily left the country, German newspaper Die Welt reported…

In addition to illegal immigrants, more than three thousand Islamic radicals have also managed to elude arrests despite outstanding warrants, the Federal Police admitted. A large number of prison escapees are also on the run.

And that’s not to mention the immigrants who have been arrested while plotting terror attacks, such as the six men arrested last November. Immigration and integration aren’t as simple as allowing people in and then treating everyone like one big family. Because at this point, Germany is still working out who is staying and who is not. There are tens of thousands of immigrants who are going to be deported (if police can find them) and an unknown number who might even be dangerous to Germany. That doesn’t excuse racism but it does make it understandable why some Germans are a bit on edge about what is happening in their country with immigration.

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