After the Koln riot business from the evening of the 31st.....there's an awful lot of dialog now via state-run TV and various forums where Germans are hyped up and frustrated.
Someone made the obvious suggestion yesterday while I was viewing commentary.....that perhaps on top of German language classes and German integration classes (mostly about the Basic Law, German history and general culture)......that it might be necessary to require foreign men (only) to attend classes on respect. The intention, at least as far as I could view the idea.....was that you'd have a classroom of twenty-odd foreign guys, and there would be hours and hours of instruction on how to handle yourself in a public setting with women.
I view the Koln riot episode as a fairly serious event, and understand the gravity of the problem.....but trying to set up a classroom environment where a number of guys have spent twenty-odd years or more of their life in a particular culture with little to marginal respect for women, and thinking fifteen class evenings of 2.5-hour discussion forums will revamp and progress you to a higher form of mankind? Well.....yeah......it's a pretty bogus concept.
I guess an intellectual could sit there and get the whimsical and theoretical idea of motivating a guy to suddenly get cultured, get respectful, and get sympathetic. The same intellectual would hire some instructor and give them the forty-odd topics which need to be introduced in some class and harp on the positive nature of German graciousness and civil attitude.
The instructor? They'd humor the intellectual and agree on the format. There would be slides, hand-outs, posters on the wall, video dialog between two German actors in some situation at the bus-stop or cafe, and this would all lead to a class environment where some goofy twenty-year-old German gal would walk in and the student would have to recite polite commentary and seem polished. Everyone in the group will be laughing as they viewed the scenario being played out and just wink at each other over the falseness of the scripted class lesson.
I consider myself an outsider in this whole episode.....although I am a guest and often see a guest-attitude in how I deal with German situations. I may see German dynamics in a different way than a German....but it's their 'circus' and you have to abide by the prevailing rules. But this naive view of the immigrants and how integration will occur like a Mercedes factory line and each piece of the limousine will fit like the long-developed design indicates? No.....I just can't be that naive in nature.
I sat and looked over a story reported in local Hessen news this morning (Friday). A Syrian gal apparently got knifed last night in her apartment house. Two guys involved, and the husband somewhere in the room as the event unfolded. Cops kinda hint that the wife got in the midst of some family argument, and ended up with multiple stab wounds. Nothing said over alcohol, drugs, or if this was some episode left over their Syrian days. I look at the two guys.....charges will be piled up....but I doubt if they get more than fifteen years over her murder. You can talk and preach all you want over integration and a different culture/environment.....but a guy who spent over twenty years of his life with a reactionary set of values......isn't going to get humble values overnight or in the process of a year or two.
The politicians in Germany.....I think.....will have to lay out some solutions that look good on paper and keep the public busy with some faith that things will all get better. Millions of Euro will likely be spent on some fake-but-realistic respect classes somewhere down the road, and some fake-but-realistic certificate will issued at the end that this immigrant guy got forty-odd hours of German-civil-behavior training. If that doesn't work? Don't worry.....you can always hire the instructor to deliver version two of this.....German-civil-and-warm-hearted training. Maybe after 2,000 hours of various classes, the guy gets it.