Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Swimming Question

This is an odd story to introduce to an American...on Germany.  First, German states sit down and write up what they want to mandate for education.  To be honest, there's not much difference from state to state (16 total states).  Some states might emphasize more languages than the norm (like Chinese, Polish, Dutch).  Some states might endorse more religious instruction for folks for one particular year out of a kid's life than others.  And some states might mandate swimming as mandatory, with no opt-out option.

It came around in the Frankfurt region....that some Islamic young lady (twelve years old) just plain wasn't going to participate in the swimming episode because her religion forbid her from seeing young men in a topless situation.  Yes, men in a topless situation.  You see, Frankfurt's rule is that you must participate in swimming classes, in a joint atmosphere....young men and women.  So you'd take a class of twenty....toss them into a 90-minute class once a week for physical education....swimming...and they'd all be certified as swimmers by the end of the first semester.

The state apparently went down the rules....because Frankfurt has a fair number of Muslim young ladies. You have no choice but to be in a public school and participate in the various mandated classes.  You can wear a full-body suit...."burkini" would be the term to use for this....and avoid any display of your body except your face, hands and feet.  Bottom will state rules.  The court came out, and said that was the final exceptions.

The only option left for the young lady and her to just say you are sick and avoid this class when it comes up.  That means you get a "zero" for the whole class.....failure.  When the end of the school year can generally only afford one or two failures, or repeat the entire school year.  This is a fair risk for a kid.

So, you kinda stand and look over the situation.  You've got a growing number of Muslims who have arrived in Germany....falling into the local Islamic community....and trying to test the Germans at every angle to accept more Islamic rules into German society....pure and simple.  You lived in a perfect Muslim society before, where everything was absolute and pure Muslim.....and apparently, you were unhappy.  So you moved to a non-Muslim society....and brought your anchor with you.  Now, you expect things to fall back into that perfect Muslim society, and just as negative or unhappy as it was before.  Course, you never think much about why things got screwed up in the old country....they just were screwed up.

It's hard to see how a Muslim could ever put himself into the position of moving to such an advanced country like Germany.  Boobs might be flashed on TV.  Relationship discussions occur nightly on some news talk show.  There might be offensive posters on the bus or subway car each day they travel to work.  There's probably three hundred things on a daily basis that challenges a Muslim to stay on a straight and narrow path.  Why would any true Muslim stand up and leave a perfect atmosphere in a Muslim be tested on a daily basis in Germany?  If you toss this at a German Muslim....they'd probably just stand there and stare at you.  They can't answer this.

My guess is that this young lady will skip the swimming class....get a full failure, and if she has a second class that comes close to failure....repeats the entire school year next year.  Maybe she's lucky....makes it, and never has to do another swimming class ever again.  Maybe twenty years down the road....her car runs off the road into some lake.....and she quietly drowns because she couldn't swim out of the lake to safety.  Stranger things have happen.

Just another odd day in Germany.

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