Sign. [Sign, Sign, Sign!]

6 Jun

Yeah, that idea to take a break from the internet did not work out too well today, so I’m immediately thrust back into “WTF?” mode…

In the wake of Koblenz’ administrative court officially countenancing racial profiling by police officers, an alliance of Black german political organizations has initiated a petition in April: Stop Racial Profiling (yes, you can sign it, too!).

Alas, whereas petitions that aim at Kristina Schröder, germany’s explicitly anti-feminist federal minister, or against certain gender discriminatory policies can count on thousands of people signing within weeks, Stop Racial Profiling’s success is rather minimal: 0.01 per cent of germany’s citizens have signed the petition, namely 4,650 people in almost 2 months.

My indignation at this was only exacerbated when this morning I discovered that a petition against “Betreuungsgeld” [i.e. the monetary reward the federal government plans for parents who (can afford to) not send their children to daycare facilities or to hire help privately while this money is actually needed for the vast amount of people (and kids...) who do wish to use yet non-existent daycare facilities], as justified as it is, is not only (yet again) sponsored by an alliance of several influential political parties and organisations, but has received 6,500 over 8,100 signatures in 2 weeks (half of them today).

Yes, this political alliance has more money, more people resources and more direct influence when it comes to publicity and impact than any Black german organisation in this country. That is a problem in itself.  But the people who initiated Stop Racial Profiling have run a publicity campaign, friends of mine and myself continuously point to the petition and ask others to sign, certain feminist blogs write about it and link to the petition, the petition is mentioned at several events – and still, on its best day, Stop Racial Profiling counted less than 180 signatures from germany.

I am not surprised. But I am still disgusted. This is what basic civil rights for people of color are worth in this country. And all the self-proclaimed progressive people who can’t wait to put their names on a piece of paper protesting the failure of daycare expansion cannot be bothered to take a minute to do the same to make life for people of color in this country a little less humiliating.

This is the best example of why I did not sign the petition “Not My Minister” against Kristina Schröder, because it neglected to even mention her discriminatory policies against people she deems non-german. This is why that neglect wasn’t a coincidence and the response that the initiators just had to focus on a certain aspect wasn’t surprising news. This is exactly what is wrong with the predominant idea and practice of german mainstream feminism: it is one-dimensional. It is all about white women* and only barely thinks of white women* who are not part of academia or a certain social status, let alone about people of color and others perceived as “non-german”.

Almost 25,000 people sign a petition against a federal minister and her policies in about 2 weeks, and more than 80 per cent of these people are either too oblivious or too racist to notice that there are pressing matters concerning the civil rights not only of white women*, but of women* of color, people of color in general, that might be supported by another digital signature. And if a single person tells me this is due to something they took issue with in the petition, let me just say that this is bullshit. Seriously. That does not supersede the real problem with racial profiling, and asking for diversity trainings for police officers is not a hardship.

It’s not that hard. You don’t even have to leave your couch. You just have to sign. –> Here. Click on it. It’ simple. You have 44 more days to sign it. Do it now. Or set an alarm. Just fucking sign.

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4 Responses to “Sign. [Sign, Sign, Sign!]”

  1. Gerd June 6, 2012 at 1:52 pm #

    I’d assume the media don’t cover that particular petition, so “progressives” simply don’t know about it. I got to know about the petition only now – and yes – I’m going to sign it in the next few minutes.

  2. Gerd June 6, 2012 at 1:59 pm #

    signed

    • accalmie June 6, 2012 at 2:56 pm #

      Gerd,

      1. that no one (rather: many people of specific social groups) hears anything about petitions like this one is an affect of racism; and it’s a problem that many people who might be very active for gender equality causes don’t know or don’t care about (activism against) other forms of discrimination.

      2. popular media outlets have reported about the ruling. this might be news to some people, but white “progressives” actually don’t have to wait and see if someone else reacts to racism. you could have started a petition yourself, or organized a rally, or written letters, etc.

      3. not having heard of the petition is, after all, the result of largely ignoring the writings of german people of color and others, both on blogs, as newspaper comments, on the homepage of ISD, Mädchenmannschaft, Migrationsrat, etc.; the petition has been linked on some of them for weeks.

      Example 1

      Example 2

      Example 3

      Example 4

      Example 5

      Example 6

      4. but yes: thank you for signing. i hope many people follow!

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  1. Petition: Stoppt Racial Profiling » takeover.beta - June 7, 2012

    [...] für diesen Aufruf bei uns ist accalmies neuer Artikel, Sign. [Sign, Sign, Sign!], der insbesondere weiße Feminist_innen betrifft: Almost 25,000 people sign a petition against a [...]

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