on tolerance

Get along, little
Doggie, to anyplace you
Please. But not Muslims!

Dogs are everywhere here! I rode home next to a dog on the bus yesterday. They're walking around, mostly leashed but sometimes not, in supermarkets, shopping malls, schools, restaurants, and train stations. It's a wonder that there isn't hair in every crevice of my skin. It's fortunate that I'm not allergic.

As a note for those of you who I can only assume will make the joke, yes, there are an unusually high proportion of German Shepherds.

Germany is really tolerant of different things, actually, contrary to any, um, reputation that they might have. Homosexuality is tolerated, as are differences in religion. I think this latter is partially because Germany is not really a religious country any longer. There are a lot of holidays left over from when it was, but no one even seems to know what they mean. Whitmonday? What the hell is that?

The E.U. in general is moving towards a more tolerant attitude on all fronts, but it isn't quite there yet. As I mentioned from the weekend, those who practise Islam are looked down upon. (Hum, I'm trying to find a slightly less-biased article than the one I posted on Sunday that details what happened, but it's not very trivial to do so. This one is amusingly opinionated.)

Most of the racism in Greece seems to stem from the fact that they get thousands of Muslim immigrants from Turkey passing through on their way to the West. I think that the US can sympathise with this: I can't count the number of derogatory things I've seen or heard against the Mexican immigrants that have been flooding the South. Then again, that tide is being stemmed; it seems that the economic downturn is affecting everyone's plans.

So I'm curious why Germany can treat dogs better than some countries can treat people. It's a perplexing mystery, indeed.


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