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What can be saved after the Swiss minaret referendum?

25 March, 2010 (16:14) | abroad | By: Aerar

(German version published on 01 December, 2009)

Now the Swiss have really done it (German) and with a majority of 57% (German) they voted against the construction of new minarets. While this makes European right wings happy (German), there of course also are the first protest notes of the islamic world (German). But it would be the first mistake already to insinuate that every Swiss has a antipathy against foreign people (or just against minarets) – otherwise the 43% who voted against the denial would be punished twice.
But the result shows clearly how certain pictures and symbols more and more become dominant within the public. After most western governments with their “Anti-terror-Measures” have actually helped to spread the seed of the terrorists than hindering it, now many followers of the islam consequently suspect these governments and their citizins of xenophobia. For example they already think it necessary to interfere with German jurisdiction (German).

The denial of minarets is a slap to the face of the islamic world. But who ever feels hurt by this, needs to look properly who it actually was who has slapped. It is not every Swiss or every European. Like muslims are not an army of bomb builders. The moderate people of both sides need to recognize that is is not a whole country or a whole religion that behaves renunciative. If they generalize certain reactions it would only be gas to the fire of a lowly burning conflict.

Nevertheless is shall be mentioned that basically acceptable interests are involved. A nation or a religion has rules and values which it tries to preserve and without which it could not exist as it would lose its identity. But it is a difference between loving the familiar and the hate of the unfamiliar. The freedom and acceptance that one claims for himself must be allowed for the other side as well. And many islamic countries are not really suspicious to be burning supporters of building church towers in their own countries.

In the end the key to solve all the upcoming conflicts between the “western” and the “islamic” world is within every single person. The ones who have claims or accusations should be sure that these really are his personal claims and accusations and should not just repeat prepared opinions of other people. And in the end, yes, even prejudices should be personal ones and always be questioned.