How seriously should we take death threats in Finland?

by , under Enrique

By Enrique Tessieri

How seriously should we take a person who threatens your life for what you write? What does he or she tell us about our society and should we expose that person’s threats? Will bringing to public light such threats strengthen or weaken our Nordic democracy and society?

I have worked as a foreign correspondent in countries that have seen their fair share of armed strife: the dirty war of Argentina (1976-83) and the over fifty-year civil war of Colombia. Even so, the only country where I had gotten death threats is Finland.

Contrary to Argentina and Colombia, the death threats that I got were for the same reason: exposing the dark side of our society, or racism.

The first death threats I got were in the early 1990s for writing an extensive report in Apu magazine on the reaction that a refugee center had caused on my hometown of Mikkeli. Fortunately my daughter, who was about seven years old at the time, did not answer the phone. My wife did and the message she got was pretty straightforward: “Tell your your husband that will kill him if continues to write about about Somalis [refugees].”

Another call I got because of that same story insulted me anonymously over the phone.

The latest death threat I got came in the fall after I published an opinion piece on Savon Sanomat in November. The handwritten note, which was put in our mail box, insinuated that the column I wrote could “be dangerous for my health.”

Another case this month was by a person who is apparently very angry at Migrant Tales for disagreeing with his simplistic views of immigrants. He appears to be a regular visitor of the anti-immigration hate site, Hommaforum.

To give you an example of the level of harassment, he wrote an email to the whole staff of an institute where I have done research telling them how bad of a person I am and how he is going to sue me for slander.

He writes in the same email: “Correct the facts in an additional article [I wrote] in Suomen Kuvalehti accompanied by an apology on Migrant Tales to all your bloggers who you [and your friends associates] have targeted your INSULTS on. Make it detailed and quick or I will make the correction myself.”

One of the matters that all these threats have in common is that the those making them have  no respect for other people’s right to express themselves freely in our society.

But the question we should ask is what do we gain by exposing publicly such threats and demands?

We live in very peculiar political times. The fact that we have politicians in parliament that are openly hostile to immigrants and cultural diversity is a cause for concern.

Personally I have never seen so much open hostility against immigrants and  political chicanery in Finland as today. If we permit this type of behavior to be the norm in our society, we will relinquish and leave to chance the future of our Nordic democratic institutions and the values that have made us such a successful society today.

One of the greatest values we should defend tooth and nail is social equality for all, or tasa-arvo.

Those that attack our values and threaten us anonymously by taking the law in their hands should be exposed. By revealing their threats and deranged world we allow ourselves to be reminded that we cannot take our Nordic way of life and society for granted.

  1. D4R

    Unbelievable, and these guys are sitting in office, a people that silence others no matter wht it takes if made criticism on them? what kind of democracy Finns are expecting in this country if they’re giving authority to these people.

    • Migrant Tales

      –So, why don’t then the PerSu politicians have a right for an opinion?

      Certainly all of us have a right to an opinion but we are responsible for what we say.

  2. Allan

    Yes, so why are you then not responsible for what you say? You fabricate lies all the time, so why do you not stand up and face the music?

  3. Sasu

    So, why don’t then the PerSu politicians have a right for an opinion? Allan

    Heillä on oikeus mielipiteisiin kyllä, mutta Suomessa sinä et voi uhata ihmisten henkeä vaikka miten vihaisit ihmistä tai ryhmää.

    Ehkä Amerikassa sinä voit uhata presidentin henkeä ja kannustaa rotusotaan jos satut olemaan valkoinen, mutta ei Suomessa. Toivotaan että se pysyy niin.

    D4R Miten Suomi reagoisi jos, joku muslimi tai musta olisi antanut samanlaisia lausuntoja. Olisivatko he pääkseet yhtä helpolla, kuin valkoinen äärioikeisto? Mitä ajattelet ?

  4. D4R

    Allan: Yes, so why are you then not responsible for what you say? You fabricate lies all the time, so why do you not stand up and face the music?

    That’s your twisted opinion that things are fabricated in here, we don’t think so, we think this blog is real and helps give a voice to immigrants whom you label them of all sort of lies, just go to Iltalehti or any other Finnish media and see it yourself. if someone comes here fabricates and lies IS YOU ALALAN.

  5. John

    Enrique still continues his anti-finnish agenda. Nice

    For the record, I have recieved death threats in Latvia, Ireland and Norway. I’ve been at gunpoint in Oslo, and threathened with knife in Stockholm. The worst violence I have met in Finland is some verbal abuse by drunktards, and hostile shouts from black immigrants because i have a shaved head (which does NOT mean I am a white power skin, but rather a big fan of ska!).

    Why do you, Enrique, even bother living in Finland, since you obviously despise the finnish people and consider Finland the only racist country in the entire world?

    • Migrant Tales

      Hi John, could you please explain what an “anti-Finnish” agenda is? You got me there.

      But please answer the question: Do you think death threats are ok in our society don’t diverge from the main topic by accusing me of things that thousands of others do.

      Why don’t I leave this country? Because I live here and because it is my right. Like you, I am an adult and don’t need somebody to tell me to go somewhere else. I can do that by myself.

      And please, take away those loaded words like “despise.” You sound like the folks from Hommaforum. Maybe I am wrong.

      And welcome to Migrant Tales.

  6. D4R

    Sasu: D4R Miten Suomi reagoisi jos, joku muslimi tai musta olisi antanut samanlaisia lausuntoja. Olisivatko he pääkseet yhtä helpolla, kuin valkoinen äärioikeisto? Mitä ajattelet ?

    Heh Sasu, mä luulen että häneltä joko evättäisi oleskelulupa tai ehkä pahoipideltäisiin. Täällä meillä ulkomaalaisille ei ole oikeasti ääntä ja luulen että, monet täälä blogissa vierailevat ovat sitä nähneet. Ainoa paikka missä voidaan ilmaista itseämme on tämön blogin kautta, tämän blogin kautta me voidaan jakaa kokemuksiamme Suomessa. Sasu, me ollaan todistettu viimeiset vuodet miten äärioikeisto ainekset ovat päässeet parlamenttiin, joten sanoisin että valkoinen äärioikeisto on enemmän vahvoilla täällä Suomessa kuin joku
    muslimi tai ulkomaalainen ylipäätäänsä, joten kyllä ukson että, jos muslimi tai musta antaisi lausuntoja mikä ei miellytä valkoinen äärioikeisto siitä olisi hänelle vahingon.

  7. Allan

    “That’s your twisted opinion that things are fabricated in here, we don’t think so, we think this blog is real and helps give a voice to immigrants”

    Yes, the problem is you “think” without knowing. You believe things all made up in your imagination. There is a word for people who live in their own imagination.

  8. D4R

    John: For the record, I have recieved death threats in Latvia, Ireland and Norway. I’ve been at gunpoint in Oslo, and threathened with knife in Stockholm. The worst violence I have met in Finland is some verbal abuse by drunktards, and hostile shouts from black immigrants because i have a shaved head (which does NOT mean I am a white power skin, but rather a big fan of ska!).

    Liar! Liar! Liar!

  9. D4R

    Allan: Yes, the problem is you “think” without knowing. You believe things all made up in your imagination. There is a word for people who live in their own imagination.

    You’re laughable, you can’t speak for what’s going on in my mind, are you out of your mind? can you think anything better than this.

  10. eyeopener

    Hi John.

    What is your real name? If you are a Finn wouldn’t it be better to use a Finnish name?? You accuse a Finn of whom you seem to know more: “Enrique STILL CONTINUES his anti-finnish agenda”. A HOMMA fan, John, Joni, Juhani……..?? Not even the courage!!

    You problem seem to be jumping into conclusions for which you do not even have the slightest of evidence: “Why do you, Enrique, even bother living in Finland, since you obviously despise THE FINNISH PEOPLE and consider Finland the only racist country in the entire world”

    First of all. There is no evidence that Enrique despises THE FINNISH PEOPLE. There is evidence that he despises people like you. And my dear John…………I agree with him.

    Secondly: Finland is by no chance the only country in the world suffering from racial abuses etc. It seems that you have the idea that Finland is nr.1 in the world ranking: RESPECT PRESENTATION Of MULTICULTURALISM MONITOR. Well, my dear John, not really. Because guys like you -and organizations that think and act alike- send a disaster message to the world of racism, sexism, anti semitism and very many isms.

    Your world is very simple!! So simple that the forrests, the trees, the lakes and rivers etc shake their heads. Ruining the Finn ecology.

    As simple as that. Put your head in the sand. Like the three monkeys: No see, no listen, no speak!!

    Whoah so simple!!

    • Migrant Tales

      Göran, why don’t we change the topic. Why don’t we talk about the two Somali and one Moroccan death in February. They were all Muslims. Why not giving us an opinion what you think about people doing this anonymously.

  11. Göran

    all killing is to be condemned. What is also sad that the Finnish media has chosen this mysterious way to report the incidents, I do not really know what has happened. May be I missed something.

  12. Allan

    Yes Enrique, lets change the subject. Wheres the article on the Tampere zumba-instructors indeed?

    You grow surprisinly silent about those feath threats against Soini. Threatening members of parliament has a slightly different gravity than threats to some silly nobody. Or are you up for elections?

  13. eyeopener

    Hi Görän.

    If you accuse me of “further indications”. you better come up with these allegations.

    It will not be so difficult to track you down to get a restraining order. I give you an opportunity to evidence your insults.

  14. Farang

    Migrant Tales:

    “Hi John, could you please explain what an “anti-Finnish” agenda is? You got me there.”

    I can explain. It’s for example you putting up old tabloid ads and then you make up in your own mind some racist scheme behind that ad and then you lie to all your readers that there was racism in that ad. That one clear example of your anti-Finnish agenda.

    • Migrant Tales

      –I can explain. It’s for example you putting up old tabloid ads…

      I think these tabloid ads are very effective. They show us how people thought in the 1990s. I remember them too and asked when will this BS stop. That’s why, Farang, you have to be careful what you write today because it may be shown tomorrow with the aging element of time. How do you think how Halla-aho’s statements and quotes will be read 10 or 20 years from today if they already look pretty bad today?

  15. BlandaUpp

    Allan, John, Göran

    How would you feel if one of your Homma forum PS buddies killed Enrique? By your words in this thread it is clear that you would celebrate it as a victory.

    You Homma Hopon are the worst hypocrites in the world. After Zionist terrorist Anders Breivik’s mass killing, you pussies shut down your forum because you were afraid there would be too many new threads celebrating his act. You guys agree with the lies that Breivik wrote about immigration and muslims in his plagiarised “manifesto”. You hate people like Enrique and myself that you now, after the Breivik manifesto, refer to as “Cultural Marxists”.

    You don’t believe in freedom of speech. You’re just bare faced racists and fascists. Stop lying to yourselves.

  16. Allan

    “How would you feel if one of your Homma forum PS buddies killed Enrique?”

    Oh blandis, you should get your head checked. The highest probability of a man his age to get killed in Finland is if you are in a drunk wino gang, and I don’t think Enrique does lasol for breakfast. If we calculate probabilities, dying of extreme vitutus when getting three votes to the local council would be the only one I’d give any odds to.

    “By your words in this thread it is clear that you would celebrate it as a victory.”
    Naah, where would we be without Migrant Tales? It is the best propaganda tool for the PS.

    “You hate people like Enrique and myself that you now, after the Breivik manifesto, refer to as “Cultural Marxists”.”

    You were cultural marxists way before – Breivik plagiarised the term, remember.

    “You’re just bare faced racists and fascists. ”
    And you are bare arsed communists rattling an old pot.

    • Migrant Tales

      The term cultural marxist is a term used by Counter Jihadists and far-right anti-immigration groups. It’s these funny terms made up and used only by them.

  17. Göran

    eyeopenor

    you sayings ”How does it feel to get ” a kick in the teeth”. I don’t need the be “a man” to kick your ash.”

    Do you need more?

  18. BlandaUpp

    Allan

    I’ll be a bare arsed communists any day unlike the bare faced racist and fascist Holocaust denier that you are.

  19. John

    I can see my point proven here, several times. First of all, I have nothing to do with Hommaforum. They’re pathethic xenophobes. I do not, and did not say I do, accept death threats under any circumstances. You’re the ones who jumped to conclusions and said I do. Neither did I say that you, Enrique, should move away; I simply presented you with the question why you bother living in a country that you obviously have so many bad thoughts about.

    What comes to my name: I am a fenno-swede. It’s a fairly common name among swedish speakers. Here, too, you guys were very quick to jump to conclusions.

    And the on-liner reply “Liar! Liar! Liar!”. That’s ingenoius! You know not a single thing about me, and what I have done in life, but still you know what I have and haven’t experienced? Don’t you guys realize you are doing the exactly the same thing as the guys at Homma here, only with the difference that you have an opposite agenda?

    I have nothing whatsoever against multiculturality, part of my proffession is helping foreigners in Finland. But I do not like the sentiment of downlooking on Finland that can so easily be spotted throughout this blog either. It is precisely the same kind of bigoting that the author frowns upon himself, only the other way around.

    Peace and out.

    • Migrant Tales

      –But I do not like the sentiment of downlooking on Finland that can so easily be spotted throughout this blog either.

      John, ever thought that we do express concern about some things going on in Finland because this is our home? Since when was debating an issue in a democratic society “looking down” on it? Is it because foreign-sounding names are doing that?

      Nice try John, but that’s an old argument you are using. Just because you work with immigrants doesn’t mean anything. PS MP Juho Eerola worked with immigrants and he likes Mussolini and is a Nazi-spirited Suomen Sisu member. The head of the xenophobic Danish People’s Party, Pia Kjaersgaard, is a social worker. The most important matter, in my opinion, is if you have the ability to grasp and understand the world of the immigrant from his or her point of view. It’s called empathy.

  20. Farang

    Migrant Tales

    “I think these tabloid ads are very effective. They show us how people thought in the 1990s.”

    You don’t get my point do you? Yes, those ads show how people thought back then. But what you do here is you lie that there are some racists thoughts in those ads, so what happens is that all the people reading this blog, who doesn’t understand Finnish, will end up thinking that there were some racist tabloid ads in 1990s.

    Ofcourse everyone here who understand Finnish, immediately see that there is no racism and are quite confused with your articles, because they claim totally different things.

    You deliberately spread lies here for those immigrants who doesn’t understand Finnish.

    Did you get the point? The problem is not the fact that you show those ads, but the problem is that you lie what those ads say.

  21. Allan

    Well, I am an immigrant/emigrant (depending on the viewpoint). However, I am working legally, my ass off, pay taxes, speak the local language and even I do make the occasional disparaging comment of a carpetted bog and plumbing outside the house, I do not find it too often I face “racism”.

    Of course, if I was Enrique, I would have a blog putting up examples of “racism” I face daily. Lets see now, it might be argued the lefthanded traffic is racist, but even then the lack of zebra crossings and the cars honking at me when I cross used to the Finnish way is “racist”. fact theres only white bread is of course racist, even the dark Polish bread is setsuuri. What else, of course being harrassed in the village pub is totally racist all the time. As I am not Enrique, the nazi salutes by the bartender havent been reported to the proper authorities, on the contrary I painted his mirror for a theme night. Yes, indeed, I could go on and on and on. All the newspapers are in English, by Jove! And I’ll have to take a racist test for becoming a subject next year, we don’t have even that in Finland (yet). Yes indeed so.

    Oh well, I guess I have to believe it wasn’t a prank my shore leave is cut short. Maybe I’ll get to see further developments in a fortnight.

  22. BlandaUpp

    John

    Native Finn here. Your original post is filled with logical fallacies attacking Enrique’s character and his Finnish identity, stating that he must “obviously despise the finnish people” when he is a Finn. You then get upset when people point out your bullshit. Nobody here is “looking down on Finland” or calling “Finland the only racist country in the entire world”.

    Cry me a river.

  23. D4R

    Allan: Well, I am an immigrant/emigrant (depending on the viewpoint). However, I am working legally, my ass off, pay taxes, speak the local language and even I do make the occasional disparaging comment of a carpetted bog and plumbing outside the house, I do not find it too often I face “racism”.

    Of course, if I was Enrique, I would have a blog putting up examples of “racism” I face daily. Lets see now, it might be argued the lefthanded traffic is racist, but even then the lack of zebra crossings and the cars honking at me when I cross used to the Finnish way is “racist”. fact theres only white bread is of course racist, even the dark Polish bread is setsuuri. What else, of course being harrassed in the village pub is totally racist all the time. As I am not Enrique, the nazi salutes by the bartender havent been reported to the proper authorities, on the contrary I painted his mirror for a theme night. Yes, indeed, I could go on and on and on. All the newspapers are in English, by Jove! And I’ll have to take a racist test for becoming a subject next year, we don’t have even that in Finland (yet). Yes indeed so.

    Oh well, I guess I have to believe it wasn’t a prank my shore leave is cut short. Maybe I’ll get to see further developments in a fortnight.

    Allan, how come you’re a Finn migrant in uk, who complains about why there is immigrants in Finland, also you come here to advocate anti-immigration in this blog, im asking you a simple question, why are you an imigrants in uk if you’re against foreigners coming to your birth country?

  24. Göran

    Blandis

    ”Allan, John, Göran

    How would you feel if one of your Homma forum PS buddies killed Enrique? By your words in this thread it is clear that you would celebrate it as a victory.”

    I wrote this in a previous comment,

    ”all killing is to be condemned.” Would you like to comment?

  25. justicedemon

    Allan

    You just contradicted the wet pants neutrality position that you are defending in another current thread.

    What gives you the right to dictate public policy to the UK government? Haven’t you understood that you are a guest in that country and have no right to express your opposition to anything?

  26. Mark

    John

    I don’t understand why you are visiting this blog. You set a trap by presenting several provocative sentences, and then complain that they are taken at face value.

    You appear to have arrived at several very distorted conclusions about this blog before you even posted, and then because the replies to your provocative posts replied to your tone rather than your actual words, you take this as proving that people here are ‘over-reacting’. However, you then go on to spell out exactly what your previous conclusions were:

    the problem is that you lie what those ads say.

    You deliberately spread lies here for those immigrants who doesn’t understand Finnish.

    Of course everyone here who understand Finnish, immediately see that there is no racism and are quite confused with your articles.

    There is no ‘of course’, though. The ‘everyone’ you refer to is your imagined audience that agree with you, agree with your trapping and provocation of the commentators here. Chances are though there is no ‘of course’ about this.

    And the idea that there is ‘no racism’ when the WIFE of the founder of Migrant Tales is told “Tell your your husband that [we] will kill him if continues to write about about Somalis [refugees].” is…….well, words fail me!

    That you cannot perceive the threat in this, that you fail to see that this was a threat not just to Enrique, but specifically to his wife….John, have you any idea what you are trying to defend here?

    This threat is at the heart of this article. How would you respond if this threat that was SPOKEN to her on the telephone was made to you or your wife?

    John, clearly the things that are said in this blog challenge your current world view and especially your view of Finland. However, in the process of defending your idea of ‘Finland’, you seem to want to defend what is clearly quite despicable and behaviour. Is that really the case?

    How far will you go in dumping your principles to defend ‘Finland’ when clearly a very very small minority of your fellow Finns are behaving in this kind of way? Is this really what it means to ‘defend Finland’? What about the ‘enemies within’? What about those individuals that in the name of ‘defending Finland’ will phone up a woman and tell her that her husband is going to be killed if he continues to talk about Somalis?

    There comes a time when you have to question your allegiances and also those that would try to manipulate those allegiances.

    In your mind John, which is the most powerful lever with which to perpetrate evil? Is it love or hate? I will tell you. It is not hate, it is love.

    In your blind love of Finland, you choose to defend what is indefensible.

  27. Farang

    Mark, those comments you quoted above were mine, not Johns. How can anyone be that stupid? Looks like you go on ranting here and not even paying attention what is said, or who has said.

    And your reference there about what has been said to someone’s wife is just stupid. While someone saying things like that is totally wrong, it doesn’t mean it’s racism.

    If a black person faces attacks etc, IT’S NOT RACISM just because the person is black. If someone thinks like that, he is racist himself. F*ing idiots think like that. It’s people like you who causes focus getting out of real racism, because you create racism in your head. You think that all wrongful actions done against black people are only because they are black. That is idiocy.

  28. Mark

    Apologies John.

    How can anyone be that stupid? lol. Sure. Show me another instance here where I have confused the posters? Yep, just one. It was a mistake. So, my comments should be aimed at you. Fine. Let’s take it from there.

    And your reference there about what has been said to someone’s wife is just stupid. While someone saying things like that is totally wrong, it doesn’t mean it’s racism.

    And the ‘what’ here is a death threat given for writing about Somalis. And you do not regard this as racism? Farang….?????????

    If a black person faces attacks etc, IT’S NOT RACISM just because the person is black. If someone thinks like that, he is racist himself.

    What you are saying here is that crime happens to black people too. Yep, I can see that. However, consider this, he (or rather his wife) received a verbal death threat for writing about racism against Somalis. Now are you really going to say that this was not racism? ….. oh boy!

    Who is the racist, again? The one’s who oppose racism, or the one’s that deny it, even when it as plain as the nose on your face?

    It’s people like you who causes focus getting out of real racism,

    It is my guess that I don’t really know what it’s like to be a victim of racism, despite my sensitivity and my well developed sense of justice, and despite my odd encounter with a public racist who decides that as an obvious ‘foreigner’, I am a target for abuse, interrogation, and suspicion. However, I am really at a loss to try to understand that Farang is the one person on this blog that knows about real racism.

    Okay, enlighten me!

  29. Mark

    John

    I have nothing whatsoever against multiculturality, part of my proffession is helping foreigners in Finland. But I do not like the sentiment of downlooking on Finland that can so easily be spotted throughout this blog either. It is precisely the same kind of bigoting that the author frowns upon himself, only the other way around.

    The author stands up for respect, tolerance, and an acceptance of diversity within societies. That is very clear. The critics of this blog constantly complain that this blog attacks Finland, when the reality is that this blog attacks racism. If you want to believe the critics, in spite of what this blog stands up for and in spite of what it’s critics constantly criticize, which is immigration from developing countries, then fine. I can see you have your priorities well in order.

  30. Native Finnish Woman

    Farang said: “And your reference there about what has been said to someone’s wife is just stupid. While someone saying things like that is totally wrong, it doesn’t mean it’s racism.”

    If someone called and specifically said ‘Somalis’, I think it’s rather obvious that it’s racist. If they said “stop writing about Finns”, it might be argued that there is room for reasonable doubt about whether the motive is racist, but come on, if singling out Somalis as a group?

    But argh, I have to say though, that there’s always so much assumptions and defensiveness and, to be honest, playing-dumb on both sides in the comments on this blog that from a relatively uninvested new reader’s point of view you are all mostly talking past each other and managing to communicate very little of what I think you actually want to communicate. Just saying, for what it’s worth.

    Farang said: “Ofcourse everyone here who understand Finnish, immediately see that there is no racism and are quite confused with your articles, because they claim totally different things.”

    I have to agree that the lööppi series confuses me, too. There have been a few that have been formulated in a racist way (or at least a racially inconsiderate, ignorant way), but most of the time I don’t quite see how the tabloid ads present negative examples of racial attitudes of the time. I understand that the tabloid papers have not exactly helped smoothen racial relations in FInland, because their job is to create drama and clashes where there is none or only little, and they have definitely done so, even I notice that. And I guess that’s what Enrique wants to bring up. It’s just the examples have not really reflected this in my opinion.

  31. Mark

    Native Finnish Woman

    I understand that the tabloid papers have not exactly helped smoothen racial relations in FInland, because their job is to create drama and clashes where there is none or only little, and they have definitely done so, even I notice that. And I guess that’s what Enrique wants to bring up. It’s just the examples have not really reflected this in my opinion.

    I agree. I know that Enrique means well, but these ‘lööppi’ belong in a media studies class, not a blog that is trying to create a ‘serious’ debate about racism.

    If these are offered as ‘examples of racism’, then they will fail miserably to convey what racism is in Finland.

    If they are presented as opportunities to discuss racism and how much has changed in a short space of time, then they have clearly failed. They appear to be an easy target.

    There is a serious point to be made in looking at these headlines. There was a lack of sensitivity or empathy towards foreigners. But that has probably changed in the last 10 years, which really is a short space of time and a very rapid learning curve. That in itself speaks well for the media in Finland. But the role of the media in this debate goes well beyond simply avoiding insensitive headlines….

    Whether it’s possible to have a constructive retrospective debate about these headlines is debatable, though, especially in a blog that already draws a lot of criticism from souls sensitive about Finland’s international reputation.

    Personally, I come to understand the importance of this blog not so much from the posts that appear, but from the response to those posts from the anti-immigrationists. It is this response that makes me feel that this blog, however blunt an instrument it tends to be, is nevertheless an important one.

  32. Mark

    Native Finnish Woman

    I understand that the tabloid papers have not exactly helped smooth racial relations in Finland, because their job is to create drama and clashes where there is none or only little, and they have definitely done so, even I notice that. And I guess that’s what Enrique wants to bring up. It’s just the examples have not really reflected this in my opinion.

    I agree. I know that Enrique means well, but these ‘lööppi’ belong in a media studies class, not a blog that is trying to create a ‘serious’ debate about racism.

    If these are offered as ‘examples of racism’, then they will fail miserably to convey what racism is in Finland.

    If they are presented as opportunities to discuss racism and how much has changed in a short space of time, then they have clearly failed. They appear to be an easy target.

    There is a serious point to be made in looking at these headlines. There was a lack of sensitivity or empathy towards foreigners. But that has probably changed in the last 10 years, which really is a short space of time and a very rapid learning curve. That in itself speaks well for the media in Finland. But the role of the media in this debate goes well beyond simply avoiding insensitive headlines….

    Whether it’s possible to have a constructive retrospective debate about these headlines is debatable, though, especially in a blog that already draws a lot of criticism from souls sensitive about Finland’s international reputation.

    Personally, I come to understand the importance of this blog not so much from the posts that appear, but from the response to those posts from the anti-immigrationists. It is this response that makes me feel that this blog, however blunt an instrument it tends to be, is nevertheless an important one.

  33. Farang

    Mark, you are stuck with the fact that the threat was about writing about Somalis. You fail to think outside of box, so let me try to illustrate:

    Person A does something (let’s call it activity X) that pissess of person B.
    B threats A because of X.

    So now we should focus on X.

    While in this case X is writing about somalis, you can’t draw a conclusion that for person B that was the trigger JUST beause it was about somalis. It might be the actions itself that triggered B, even if A would have been writing about any other group. The target group (Somalis) were a choice of A, not the choice of B. And B threats A because A writes, not because A writes about Somalis. Do you see my point?

    Another example:

    Person A is beating person B and person C sees it but ignores it.
    Now let’s say A and C are white and B is black.
    Now with your logic you could say that C is a racist because he didn’t help B, but that would be based on your racist assumption that C didn’t help BECAUSE B was black. Meantime the reason of C not helping might aswell be that he didn’t want to be part of it, no matter which coulour the persons A or B were.

    Summary: You can’t say the reasons behind actions are racist just because the target is black (or any other minority). Racism is one possibility, but you can’t say that for certainty.

  34. Mark

    Farang

    Mark, you are stuck with the fact that the threat was about writing about Somalis. You fail to think outside of box, so let me try to illustrate:

    I can understand that you would have to ‘think outside the box’ and more probably ‘outside the norms of human society’ to arrive at the conclusion that this was not racism. No disagreement there.

    Person A activity X) person B.
    B threats A because of X focus on X.

    Did your mum give you alphabet soup for breakfast? 😀

    This is the biggest load of sophistry I’ve read in a long time Farang. You completely take your audience for muppets if you think that juggling of alphabet letters is going to hide the very simple fact that Enriques wife was told that if he carries on writing about Somalis, he will die. Not ‘if he carries on writing stuff I don’t like’.

    There is no uncertainty about this, Farang.

    What is certain however is that you will exercise Olympic-winning mental and psychological gymnastics to avoid coming to what is the absolutely obvious conclusion in this case: the threat was clearly motivated by racism.

  35. Allan

    Yes, those “lööppi” articles are a prime example of how Emrique invents “racism” in Finland. There is nothing to debate about with made-up imaginary stories is there?

    This site only confirms peoples prejudices as to what value should be given to foreigners opinions. I think Enrique is a card-carrying PS member in Halla-aho’s service, as no other site has done as much work to benefit the anti-immigration cause.

    • Migrant Tales

      Those Ilta-Sanomat billboards are a reminder, a testimony, an example that you cannot avoid. A warning: Watch out what you write today because time has a way with racism. It will expose it for what it is. It’s like hearing a speech by a raging Nazi of the 1930s or Mussolini telling about his economic model, which I am certain PS MP Juho Eerola would like to hear.

    • Migrant Tales

      Göran, I am going to ask you to cool it with eyeopener. Talk about some other things like picking flowers in July.

  36. Sasu

    Jos tämä keskustelu olisi todellisessa maailmassa, se olisi huuto kilpailu jossa on väittelyn aineksia. Siis aivan turha keskustelu. Värillisten ei kuuluisi alkaa väitellä siitä onko rasismia, kun me tiedämme, että täälä on rasismia.

    Mitä me hyödymme tästä.
    Olisi ihan kiva tietää, kun olen itse täysin kyllästynyt tähän jo nyt

    Noista lööpeistä. Ne ovat aika turhia. Ne eivät edusta nyky Suomea, mutta ovat ihan hyvä muistutus millainen Suomi oli ennen värisokean rasismin aikaa. Rasismi 2.0 aika onkin niin suvaitsevainen.

  37. Farang

    Mark:

    “very simple fact that Enriques wife was told that if he carries on writing about Somalis, he will die. Not ‘if he carries on writing stuff I don’t like’. ”

    Are you stupid or do you pretend to be stupid?

    Is writing about somalis racist? If yes, then who is the racist?

    Why don’t you understand that even if the person who made the threat said it was about “writing about somalis” it doesn’t mean the reason was actually the somalis. If enrique was writing about iraqis instead, then the person would have made the same threat but replaced somalis with iraqis. Then nationality or ethnic background is not necessarily the trigger. Since you are unable to understand clear issues, I will try only one more time, if you still don’t understand, it’s not my job to educate you:

    Person A made the threat because he is pissed about something that Person B does. Now what person B did was slagging Finland. If slagging Finland pisses A off, does that mean A is racist? No, ofcourse not.

    Now, the way B slagged Finland was how he wrote about Somalis. That doesn’t change anything, it doesn’t make it anymore racist to get pissed about slagging Finland.

    • Migrant Tales

      I think this is pretty clear:

      7 § (21.4.1995/578) Laiton uhkaus. Joka nostaa aseen toista vastaan tai muulla tavoin uhkaa toista rikoksella sellaisissa olosuhteissa, että uhatulla on perusteltu syy omasta tai toisen puolesta pelätä henkilökohtaisen turvallisuuden tai omaisuuden olevan vakavassa vaarassa, on tuomittava, jollei teosta muualla laissa säädetä ankarampaa rangaistusta, laittomasta uhkauksesta sakkoon tai vankeuteen enintään kahdeksi vuodeksi.

      http://www.heikniemi.fi/rikoslaki/rl25.html

      The way we are talking about this is strangely familiar to how some debate racism and deny that there may be a problem in Finland. It’s bad for society because you don’t resolve the matter. And the issue does need a lot of resolving if our comments board is anything to go by.

  38. Mark

    Farang

    Are you stupid or do you pretend to be stupid?

    Are you normally obnoxious or do you pretend to be obnoxious?

    Is writing about somalis racist? If yes, then who is the racist?

    This is not a question! This is incoherent nonsense.

    Why don’t you understand that even if the person who made the threat said it was about “writing about somalis” it doesn’t mean the reason was actually the somalis.

    Well, it must be because I’m stupid, then isn’t it! Look Farang, he said it was because of writing about Somalis, and I assume with a very high degree of certainty that it was about the racism that Somalis experience in Finland. So, Enrique’s wife is told that if he doesn’t stop writing about racism in Finland, then he’s going to die.

    Now let’s see Farang, who could possibly object to someone writing about racism against Somalis? A closet racist, perhaps? Someone who absolutely refuses to accept that there is ever any racist crime in Finland, while even being prepared to threaten the life, terrorize a family and general break the law in several respects. I wonder what kind of person that is a profile of?

    It is no accident that you ‘understand’ this person Farang, or that you jump to explain that the actions are somehow in defence of Finland’s reputation and nothing to do with racism. The problem for an extremist is not that everyone thinks they are an extremist, they generally shrug these accusations off all too easily – no, the problem is that they see ordinary people as the extremists.

    Need I say more?

  39. Allan

    “Now let’s see Farang, who could possibly object to someone writing about racism against Somalis?”

    Would have to read the article to know, but I can well understand someone getting pissed off about the imagiantion of Enrique, the article was not printed on the April 1st I gather.

  40. Göran

    eyeopener

    thank you. As far as I remember it was written ‘excellent’ for that understanding? Is that you way of expressing when something is good?

  41. eyeopener

    No Görän.

    I do acknowledge the 4 dimensions of the TOEFL. And those were graded. Can you give me the seperated grades of each of the dimensions?? You think I don’t know the test???

    But once again you missed the point. An educated man -in English that is- should be able to understand the “common language as spoken in England”. And “it’s common meaning”.

    Therefore: once more congratulations with your TOEFL but a BOEH for your understanding the “common sense” of language. Didn’t you study and work in the UK??. Doesn’t sound like it. Nevertheless you have said that you have travelled, been in exchanges and have worked abroad.

    Your learning process seems to have got “stuck on the road” somewhere halfway??

    Actually and honestly, you are so preditable and SO SO SO simple.

    Get more intellectual will you??

  42. Farang

    Mark:

    “Now let’s see Farang, who could possibly object to someone writing about racism against Somalis? A closet racist, perhaps?”

    You show your simple mindness here. It depends on how it is written. If it’s written in a way that it bashes agains Finns as a nation, then objecting to that text has nothing to do with racism.

    It’s people like you who have this obsession that EVERYTHING negative what happens that involves IMMIGRANTS/BLACKS must be racism. And that is because you fail to look issues in a way that disregards the colour of the persons. Therefore it’s YOU who make things racial, you bring the race in the matters. That makes YOU the racist. Can’t you see it? You make the assumption of everything, motives, etc based on the skin colour.

  43. Mark

    Farang

    This is your last warning. Your comments will start to be deleted unless you start to control your insulting of people. You are free to make your points. If you really believe in what you are saying, you do not need to insult people to make your points. Even if you really feel that it is ‘lying’, then take some ownership and responsibility for that by saying ‘it appears to me/it seems to me’. That way, you show respect to other people.

    This blog is a voice for immigrants. It is not a platform for those against immigration. If you want to come here and make your points, you will learn to do it respectfully or you will not be tolerated. I hope this is clear and I hope you can see that you are still free to make your arguments – but in a respectful way.

  44. Mark

    Farang

    It’s people like you who have this obsession that EVERYTHING negative what happens that involves IMMIGRANTS/BLACKS must be racism. And that is because you fail to look issues in a way that disregards the colour of the persons.

    You are using absolutes here Farang. I am very careful about using absolutes in anything I write, though I’m sure we all do it. However, there is not ‘everything’ in regard to what happens to immigrants in my book.

    I am quite capable of weighing up how likely it is that colour has been in issue in regard to the actions of individuals, both immigrants and non-immigrants. The simple fact is that you cannot simply ignore ‘colour’ in absolutely every issue, especially when you are looking at discrimination. Otherwise, you blind yourself to the discrimination. You do see that, yes?

    Therefore it’s YOU who make things racial, you bring the race in the matters. That makes YOU the racist. Can’t you see it? You make the assumption of everything, motives, etc based on the skin colour.

    Of course, the person calling for tolerance, respect, equality, the right to live a life free of discrimination, it is he who is the racist!!! And not the person condemning refugees for not being able to get a job or throwing out unsubstantiated and unweighted statistics to try to prove that all Muslims or certain Africans are just rapists, robbers, and generally culturally ‘inferior’. Nope, this person isn’t the racist.

  45. Allan

    Enrique, I just read that “Suomen Kuvalehti” article mentioned. A few snarky comments with classic “goodbye to Argentina” quips, but it was written something like a year ago?. And this email harrasment guy read it only now? Somethings not quite right here. While the facts were classic enriquisms, that article wasn’t really anything that’d cause me to lift an eyebrow. I don’t know why he is so adamant for recanting. That guy must not have all moomins in the valley.

    This comment amused me though:

    Lemmy Caution kirjoitti:

    ”Jos haluat kokeilla, kuinka tyrmistyttäviä monet maahanmuuttovastaiset puheet ja antimuslimiväitteet ovat, mieti miten reagoisit, jos joku maahanmuuttaja puhuisi samaan sävyyn sinulle tai muille suomalaisille. ”

    Onko tuo nemoo.wordpress.com joku sinun yhteiskunnallinen kokeilusi vai? Aika rasistista tekstiä suomalaisia kohtaan, liiottelusta puhumattakaan.

    Maybe this harrasment was the rebellion you predicted? Was it not your intention? I have a feeling you are going to be on the list for the next county polls.

    • Migrant Tales

      Allan, if you go back, say, two years ago the idea was that people in the hard-core anti-immigration camp could say what they pleased without anyone really raising a finger at them. If you turned around what these people said, and continue to say, and substitute the word “immigrant” for say “Finn” you’d get the meaning of their insults. There’s nothing constructive by what they are saying. All they are messaging to the public is scoring brownie points by spewing hatred. It’s as simple as that. When their arguments are questioned we see them hit the wall.

  46. D4R

    Farang :It’s people like you who have this obsession that EVERYTHING negative what happens that involves IMMIGRANTS/BLACKS must be racism. And that is because you fail to look issues in a way that disregards the colour of the persons. Therefore it’s YOU who make things racial, you bring the race in the matters. That makes YOU the racist. Can’t you see it? You make the assumption of everything, motives, etc based on the skin colour.

    No no no, you got it all wrong my friend, nobody is making any racial remarks, we’re here in M.T thread for a reason, there has been many many racial incidents in Finland over the course of years, where dark skin people has been attacked while racially slurs used against them, many attacks on immigrants especially darkskin people, and now politicial who use the n word freely or who wants to put immigrants and gays in a concentration camp, are ypou saying there is no racism and that we’re delusional? i say it’s the other way round or it’s a denial i your part.

  47. Allan

    So what about all the numerous cases you conveniently forget to mention of immigrants attacking the Finns? No racism there apparently? Come to think of it, if you only have a handful of these your “dark-skinned people” they do have an amazing effect in the statistics, and not as the victims. Where do you think the prejudices come from?

  48. D4R

    Allan: So what about all the numerous cases you conveniently forget to mention of immigrants attacking the Finns? No racism there apparently? Come to think of it, if you only have a handful of these your “dark-skinned people” they do have an amazing effect in the statistics, and not as the victims. Where do you think the prejudices come from?

    Where is the evidence that immigants attacked native Finns randomly? provide us evidence, untill then we only got your word and we know you’re a leader in the lying departmen, again what statistics are we talking about? Allan can you ever get tired of bringing up these false statistics you keep bringing up, you have been proven wrong agains and again but your stubborn and it’s amusing.

Leave a Reply