Two Dutch Girls on a Road Trip to Wiltshire

Road Trip 2017 (2) - Richmond to Chawton to Salisbury.

Good afternoon! Would you like to join me for the second part of my road trip in the South-West of England? A long time wish of my daughter...

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Ugly words....Why do people feel they have the right to use them??


Yesterday, 19 March 2014, there were elections in my country, for local government. This is a manifestation of democracy. 
I hurried home after work, because I wanted to be able to vote. Voting is a right, but I believe it is my duty as well, as there have been women who have fought long and hard for other women like me to get the vote.

When I hurried back, for I had to go to choir practice immediately afterwards, I turned on the radio in the car. And what I heard on it, made my hairs stand on end. There was a politician, called Geert Wilders, sowing hate in a café in The Hague. No other word for it.

We are a multicultural society. We have been a multicultural society for centuries. We have welcomed Huguenots, Jews, protestants from England, and later we have invited workers from Italy, Turkey, Morocco, Tunisia, and now Poland, Bulgaria, Rumania and the Baltic States amongst others.

The EU makes crossing borders easy. We have chosen this, ourselves. In a democracy, the majority rules. We have chosen this.

And yes, it isn't a piece of cake, this multi-culti life.

But to actually set aside an entire race as second class citizens, scares the shit out of me. Because this has happened before. And haven't we learned from this???
My mother saw her Jewish girlfriends deported from her Rotterdam street in the years 1940-1945. This has traumatized her for life!

And now this Mr Wilders is using his right of free speech, and he makes Dutchmen in a bar cry out that they want less Moroccans in 'our' country? What about all those Moroccans born in our country - being Dutch in all but ethnic heritage? Paying taxes in our country? Working hard to raise their kids in our country?

Wilders has crossed a line, here. 
Yes, we have the right of free speech. Yes, we experience problems with our multicultural society. Yes, there are criminal Moroccans. But there are criminal ethnic Dutchmen too! And criminal....fill in the dots yourself.

I work with colleagues from Morocco. They were upset, today. And I understand them. I work with pupils from all over the globe. And they were upset, today. And I understand them.

People are people. Whether they are from outer Mongolia or the North Pole. Who cares?! As long as they behave themselves as intelligent thinking human beings, it doesn't matter if they are white, yellow, black, purple or striped with gold dots!

Mr Wilders plays an extremely dangerous game here. For if there are recriminations now, if there are reactions, if some Moroccan gets so fighting angry that he does something rash, all Wilders has to do is point the finger, and say: "see? Told you so!" And a substantial group of my countrymen will nod and cry victory.

Holy Moly, don't we learn anything from history then?
I am undone.