Immigrants in Finland feel like safe outsiders

by , under Enrique

There’s an interesting news story on MTV3 that claims that immigrants in Finland feel physically secure in this country but see themselves as outsiders. This is the first story I’ve read in this country that addresses a big issue in Finland, which is common in other countries as well. 

One of the reason why some immigrants feel like outsiders in this society is because their communities are small, fragmented and struggling to survive.

Kuvankaappaus 2013-9-5 kello 21.05.31
Read full story (in Finnish) here.

The MTV3 story, which cited a poll, claimed that foreigners felt more like outsiders in Helsinki than immigrants in Turku, Stockholm, Tallinn and Riga.

If people feel that they are outsiders, the obvious question we should ask is why. As we try to find an answer to the question, we slowly begin to identify the issues and find effective tools to challenge them. The social ills are the usual culprits: social exclusion, prejudice, racism, and a wide gamut of others related to the latter.

If we shine more light on social exclusion, certainly we’ll find inequality and poverty fenced by culprits like intolerance and hatred.

As long as the immigrant population in Finland is small like now, comprising of only 3.4% of the population, there will be little outcry to social exclusion. According to the Population Register Center, our immigrant population numbers 195,511. It is still too small to be taken seriously by the majority population.

If there are some 50,000 people of the age of 15-29 that are marginalized from our society, the chance of being socially excluded is much higher if you are a person with an immigrant background.

When will immigrants, or Finland’s “Other” have a voice in this country? Probably when our immigrant and visible minority population grows and comes of age.

By 2030 our immigrant population will pass that half a million mark.

Will that be a large enough community to have a say in this country’s affairs remains to be seen.

 

 

  1. ohdake

    Given that Finnish goal in general is integration of immigrants not to exclude immigrants further into separate enclaves or ghettos i really fail to see what larger & more coherent immigrant communities would or even could achieve. That would seem to only serve to inhibit the integration.

    One thing you really ought to make is to clarify which are your own opinions and which are actually from the source you mentioned – as it happens none of the reasons you presented were included in the original news article. The actual study (as described by MTV3) reported just that Finns are ‘a little bit nationalistic and quiet’ – nothing beyond that.

    • Enrique Tessieri

      –The actual study (as described by MTV3) reported just that Finns are ‘a little bit nationalistic and quiet’ – nothing beyond that.

      Did you see the news story on MTV3? It was a bit confusing but clear on some points. In my opinion, the main point of the news story was that immigrants feel physically safe but don’t feel that they are a part of society. All of us who have come from other countries know this feeling, which doesn’t happen only in Finland.

      When we debate and talk about the society we live in, ie Finland, don’t take everything so personally. One of the big aims of this blog is to debate things that are not debated enough in our society.

      “It (Migrant Tales) aims to be a voice for those whose views and situation are understood poorly and heard faintly by the media, politicians and public.”

    • JusticeDemon

      Given that Finnish goal in general is integration of immigrants not to exclude immigrants further into separate enclaves or ghettos i really fail to see what larger & more coherent immigrant communities would or even could achieve. That would seem to only serve to inhibit the integration.

      Perhaps your vision will clear if you distinguish integration from assimilation.

    • Mark

      Given that Finnish goal in general is integration of immigrants not to exclude immigrants further into separate enclaves or ghettos i really fail to see what larger & more coherent immigrant communities would or even could achieve.

      Separation into ‘enclaves’ is a result of several factors, some to do with immigrants, some to do with the host country. For example, immigrants will seek other immigrants from the same country simply because this is a constructive way of finding out how things work. Second, services for immigrants tend to be concentrated to specific areas because supplying those services on a nationwide or even city-wide level (for larger cities) can be much more expensive, and the host nation’s citizens are usually not very happy about those kinds of costs. Third, where people live often depends on the kind of housing available. In Finland, social housing is more accessible to the ‘poor’, which means immigrants are more likely to start in this kind of housing, because of their generally lower incomes. Moreover, discrimination can operate in the private sector, where going for a flat is rather like going for a job in Finland!! This can also work to concentrate immigrants in particular areas. Fourth, ‘white flight’ is where native locals can start to avoid particular areas because of the higher concentrations of immigrants in those areas, thus accelerating the concentration. This phenomenon is very well documented. Fifth, what tends to happen is that immigrants can start in these kinds of situations, neighbourhoods, and as subsequent generations gain education, better paid jobs and more possibilities also for home ownership, then there is greater dispersal.

      One factor that works against ghettos in Finland is that housing is quite mixed. Detached houses, row houses and apartment blocks tend to exist in the same areas, thus giving a mix of incomes and avoiding the kinds of racial geographical racial segregations that have taken place in the US for example.

      It is also generally recognised that the support of a ‘familiar’ community can help with integration. Of course, real integration is about simply obtaining education, employment and being productive members of society. It is not about what you wear, what you eat, or what music you listen to or what church you attend. It is not even about having progressive or liberal values, as there are plenty of conservatives living within our culture already. The key thing with integration is language, and it is so sad that we come back to this problem again and again and yet the effort and resources put into solving these challenges are so meagre. This is where efforts and resources should be concentrated. All immigrants should have an ongoing ‘language plan’, as this would be more significant and practical than even an ‘integration plan’.

    • ohdake

      @JD…

      Perhaps your vision will clear if you distinguish integration from assimilation.

      If you can not separate those two from each other then i do feel sorry for you.

      —-

      @Mark…

      Yes, agreed on most points. However that was not the issue. Author (Enrique) described the current situation is that immigrant communities are small and fragmented. If the communities were larger and ‘whole’ (i suppose that is proper antonym in this case) i think the pressure for the integration or learning the language – Finnish being rather alien language – would correspondingly be smaller. That is without stress or pressure driving for a change (be that for good or ill) there is little chance of seeing change. With strong support group there might be a no real need (pressure) for the immigrants to venture outside of the ‘safe & close-knit community’ to actually integrate into the society or take part in any ‘language plan’.

      Finns (native Finns) aren’t really making that any easier though even when discounting any kind of racism. If some one tries to start a discussion with halting Finnish a native Finn is rather likely to swap to English or Swedish (or German, Russian etc. – native Finns tend to be silent on several languages) – something which does not exactly help new learners with the language and its obscure structures. Even more so when Finnish is said of being sort of opposite of English – i.e. difficult to learn but after learning rather easy to master, while English is easy to learn but very difficult to master. And other of course is that Finns are introverted and quiet – a real life example, I had 15 km walk last weekend; met closer to 50 people along the way, of them just one spoke to me, she uttered a grand total of one word to me – that being ‘Huomenta’. This despite that i essentially walked alongside few of those people for several kilometers.

    • Mark

      If the communities were larger and ‘whole’ (i suppose that is proper antonym in this case) i think the pressure for the integration or learning the language – Finnish being rather alien language – would correspondingly be smaller. That is without stress or pressure driving for a change (be that for good or ill) there is little chance of seeing change. With strong support group there might be a no real need (pressure) for the immigrants to venture outside of the ‘safe & close-knit community’ to actually integrate into the society or take part in any ‘language plan’.

      Yet a community only functions through a mixture of commerce and culture. This ‘whole’ community would not be whole without that activity. And activity would require adequate skills in Finnish, as any immigrant business owner would tell you. And the idea that there is ‘little chance for change’ does not reflect adequately the realities of immigration. Areas of the UK where language problems have persisted are a result of large influxes of first generation immigrants. Second generation immigrants do not normally suffer the same degree of handicap in regard to the host language, though schools in run down areas can suffer insufficient resources to match the needs of pupils – but that is a different matter altogether.

      I’m not sure about this idea of ‘not venturing out’ of that community. I know of Finns who have never been to Helsinki, for instance. Staying close to a small community is not, once again, something specific to immigrant communities – the question is why is it SO bad when immigrants do it? The issue is surely whether there can be productive lives within those communities. Integration is something that happens, much like a child learns to talk, not because of the parents teaching, but usually in spite of it.

      I had 15 km walk last weekend; met closer to 50 people along the way, of them just one spoke to me, she uttered a grand total of one word to me – that being ‘Huomenta’.

      Finns in public with strangers are quite different to Finns in private, wouldn’t you say? Saying they are quiet actually emphasizes perhaps that getting to know a Finn is the hard part. But learning the language is a must. You just have to insist on speaking Finnish, at home, at work, socialising, in shops, unless it’s important stuff where total clarity is important. I have had several doctors meetings almost entirely in Finnish, but I will usually just paraphrase in English at the end just to make sure I have it right.

    • JusticeDemon

      If you can not separate those two from each other then i do feel sorry for you.

      Thank you for your sympathy. You have now answered your own query.

      Would you describe the Finnish community in Hancock, Michigan, as “integrated”?

    • ohdake

      I’m not sure about this idea of ‘not venturing out’ of that community. I know of Finns who have never been to Helsinki, for instance. Staying close to a small community is not, once again, something specific to immigrant communities – the question is why is it SO bad when immigrants do it? The issue is surely whether there can be productive lives within those communities. Integration is something that happens, much like a child learns to talk, not because of the parents teaching, but usually in spite of it.

      I wasn’t really referring to physical proximity with close-knit community reference. If a person wonders from one immigrant community from Helsinki to another one at say Oulu that is not what i referred to with ‘venturing out’ – i meant more like venturing out of the comfort zone. Just to that in order to perceive (as in really understand) the need for acquiring Finnish language i would think that immigrants would need some concrete reason for it. While there is stronger support for the immigrants in close-knit communities it would seem to me that if the communities are ‘too tightly’ knit then it would essentially starve or choke that need for acquiring a foreign language since there wouldn’t really be a need for it.

      I just don’t see a reason why 1st generation immigrants should essentially be allowed to recluse themselves from the society – from what can be seen that seems to hurt them as well as the society. That is when compared with the end results while exclusion might feel better for the immigrants themselves early on they would likely be better off with more immersion than with exclusion.

      Finns in public with strangers are quite different to Finns in private, wouldn’t you say? Saying they are quiet actually emphasizes perhaps that getting to know a Finn is the hard part. But learning the language is a must. You just have to insist on speaking Finnish, at home, at work, socialising, in shops, unless it’s important stuff where total clarity is important. I have had several doctors meetings almost entirely in Finnish, but I will usually just paraphrase in English at the end just to make sure I have it right.

      Native Finns (like me) indeed are rather different animals when in public or in private.

    • JusticeDemon

      I just don’t see a reason why 1st generation immigrants should essentially be allowed to recluse themselves from the society

      i meant more like venturing out of the comfort zone

      This is just plainly offensive.

      Immigrants belonging to visible minorities in particular have the utmost difficulty securing even basic social acknowledgement in Finland. Their choice falls generally on either of two extremes: either attend quietly in the hope that someone will eventually invite participation (despite all of the non-verbal signals suggesting that such participation is not welcome), or insist on participation at the risk of being thought aggressive or at least pushy. The former situation can easily come to resemble the story of how the young Kwai Chang Caine eventually gains admission to the Shaolin monastery, whereas the latter is almost stage set to provide ammunition for racist anecdotes.

      All sorts of bad excuses are generally given for this all-too-common experience of exclusion, but it really comes down to a pathological lack of self-esteem in the national character. You can generally see the quiet panic in the faces of the club members whenever they fail to escape eye contact. Neighbours may be on first-name terms with everyone living on the same floor and even on the same stairwell except… you’ve guessed it, but have any of those neighbours taken genuine steps to welcome visible minority families? You’ve guessed it again. Or perhaps you haven’t and perhaps you can’t.

      An immigrant is already by definition no longer in any comfort zone, and despite all efforts, the Finns have not yet managed to repeal the law that it takes two to tango.

    • ohdake

      This is just plainly offensive.

      So if i say that 1st generation immigrants need to included rather than excluded it is ‘plainly offensive’ but if i stated that 1st generation immigrants would need to be excluded then it would be ‘racist’…

      All sorts of bad excuses are generally given for this all-too-common experience of exclusion, but it really comes down to a pathological lack of self-esteem in the national character. You can generally see the quiet panic in the faces of the club members whenever they fail to escape eye contact. Neighbours may be on first-name terms with everyone living on the same floor and even on the same stairwell except… you’ve guessed it, but have any of those neighbours taken genuine steps to welcome visible minority families? You’ve guessed it again. Or perhaps you haven’t and perhaps you can’t..

      That actually is just about the same how native Finns treat any and every newcomer, even other native Finns. May not be what immigrant has been used to but that tends to be how things work.

    • JusticeDemon

      So if i say that 1st generation immigrants need to included rather than excluded it is ‘plainly offensive’

      Yes. Your talk about immigrants reclusing themselves and failing to venture out of the comfort zone is plainly offensive.

      You also now admit that the main obstacle to integration is the Finnish population:

      That actually is just about the same how native Finns treat any and every newcomer, even other native Finns. May not be what immigrant has been used to but that tends to be how things work.

      As I said: a pathological lack of self-esteem in the national character

      Fortunately this pathology is not as common as it once was, but the racist element in the Finnish political sphere quite evidently seeks to exploit it instead of curing it.

    • ohdake

      Yes. Your talk about immigrants reclusing themselves and failing to venture out of the comfort zone is plainly offensive.

      Given that discussion was handling an issue of immigrants having large close-knit communities (i.e. more separate from the society), then recluse is appropriate word.

      Point was that if there is no stress or pressure to get outside of the safety of the close-knit community then very little or nothing gets done in the way of integration either – only perceivable result from that seems to be having one segregated society existing within a larger society which to me would seem only to work against immigrants and their integration.

      You also now admit that the main obstacle to integration is the Finnish population

      No, it is that immigrant rarely realize how introverted and different Finnish culture & society can be. What immigrant might perceive to be racism (taking your examples) in Finland is something that native Finns also face.

      As I said: a pathological lack of self-esteem in the national character

      That is your judgement without any supporting evidence? Right… Only thing your comment managed to prove is that you are racist against Finns – per definition as it happens to be a prejudice directed against Finns.

      No, it is not mark of low self-esteem, see for example: http://yle.fi/uutiset/finnish_silence_can_be_golden_says_american_expert/6454371 – it is just different. On the other hand Your inability to accept and/or understand that tells a lot about you.

    • JusticeDemon

      Who said anything about silence? You are merely giving another of those bad excuses that I mentioned.

      It is quite easy to adapt to the communication patterns of Finnish speakers (which are by no means unique to Finland), but these emphatically do not explain a deliberate practice of avoiding and excluding anyone who is perceived to be other.

      Perhaps you have another explanation for the last empty seat phenomenon that is regularly experienced and reported by members of visible minorities. If so, then I’m sure we would all love to hear it. How is it that the aroma of pizza on the stairwell disturbs nobody, but a whiff of curry will be discussed on the housing company board before anybody (other than the inebriated) will talk to the Indian family living in apartment B 27? Are Finnish journalists and public servants specifically trained to submit their stories and policy proposals concerning immigrants without even attempting to give those concerned an opportunity to express their views? Who is not venturing out of their comfort zone here?

      I admit that I’m not familiar with your use of recluse as a verb, especially in this reflexive sense, but I understood you to mean that immigrants make a deliberate choice to withdraw from society at large, whereas I would say that we enter where the door is open. It is willfully mendacious to conclude any defect of character from failure to enter (or from forcible entry, as in my own case) when the door was locked.

      Please also explain what is wrong with having a large close-knit community. In my ignorance, this seems infinitely preferable to a fragmented transactional community in which some alcoholic can lie dead in his apartment for months and only be discovered when the housing company has determined that the associated odour has nothing to do with the Indian family living in apartment B 27.

    • ohdake

      Your reply convinced me that you have not bothered to read the whole of the discussion. In the initial post Enrique made reference that immigrant communities are ‘small and fragmented’ and that this makes them outsiders to the society. Now opposite to ‘small and fragmented’ in this could is large & tightly composed, something which with its safety net could easily be described as ‘closely-knit’.

      Who is not venturing out of their comfort zone here?

      Can’t really remember ever having stated that Finns would be perfect. However as usual you are besides the point. Matter was that without need to go outside of the immigrant community – if it were such which i refer to with as ‘closely-knit’ – there is very little chance of any kind of integration. If anything it would only seem to increase the gaps in the society working IMO for the benefits of the bigots in the ranks of the PS party.

      Please also explain what is wrong with having a large close-knit community.

      If you have been unable to learn what i meant it with by now from the preceding posts there is no point in repeating it any further since it is clear that you have no interest of understanding what i was referring to.

  2. Joonas

    Slightly off-topic, but I found quite interesting site about immigration stories from Finland (unfortunately Finnish only). There you can find quite neutral stories how people have integrated to Finland – something I have wished MT would have as well:

    http://www.tkm.fi/mamu/mamu.cgi

    • Mark

      Yes, it’s a very good site, exactly what I’ve been thinking we need too more of here. I just read Ademi’s story and about his work with founding an NGO for helping other Afghans. As I read about the several things that the organisation does to help immgrants from Afghanistan, my attention was caught by the mention of the importance of teaching culture. I know that would stick in the throat of some Finns, who would say they should focus on learning Finnish culture, and not put efforts into their native languages or ‘reproducing’ their culture in Finland, imagining ‘their’ culture to be all about bombs and stonings. But Ademi pointed out that if they ever were able to return to Afghanistan, then if the children knew nothing of Afghan culture or language, their life would be very difficult. I guess being in the same position himself in Finland when he first arrived, he knows those difficulties very intimately. These stories are very interesting because they open up perspectives and stop the discussions from becoming too politicised, and notions about other people’s ‘culture’ to become too narrow or negative.

    • Joonas

      @Mark
      It might be just me, but sometimes I feel MT is only focusing on the negative experiences of integration and forgetting the rest. If I would tell my life story in Finland, I wouldn’t only focus on the negative/positive things have happened to me either.

      The stories in the link are as well telling the hardship and difficulties, but also about the success and overcoming the problems. It is more inspiring and gets better reception than telling “WHITE Finns have to change!”- chant. People are smart enough to read between the lines if somebody has criticism, but writer doesn’t necessary have to shove it down your throat.

      But that being said, I felt like this blog post was more neutral and less finger pointing than some other recent ones, so that’s something positive.

    • Mark

      Joonas

      It is more inspiring and gets better reception than telling “WHITE Finns have to change!”- chant.

      I personally feel these kinds of stories are crucial, not just because of how they make readers feel, but because they have the possibility to properly inform the political debates.

      But, someone still needs to be standing on the street corner complaining about racism. Ademi for example spoke of experiencing racism in public spaces, but while it doesn’t stop him appreciating Finland, it doesn’t make the racism any more tolerable or acceptable.

      The other thing is that it’s not that immigrants are just being left alone to get on with the business of living and adapting to a new country – they are in the news every week, as political pawns in a nationalist/populist discourse that singles them out for particular ‘control’, with all the potential abuses of power that come with that attempt to ‘control’ immigration.

      It is against that backdrop that Migrant Tales brings very specific kinds of voices, I think, that challenge that kind of public rhetoric. As much as racism is expressed through attitudes, opinions and statements made about particular groups, so too the opposition to that must therefore seek to discuss attitudes and opinions, be critical of them and question the statements being made.

      Many immigrants don’t want to get mixed up in a political row about the backward attitudes they may encounter in their host country. It’s a pretty thankless task and you are subject to a great deal of misunderstanding and misrepresentation for doing so. But if we stand for nothing, we fall for everything, as the saying goes!

  3. Brave

    Joonas,
    A few questions for you
    What do u mean by this ( negative experiences )?
    What does experience mean to you?
    Talking only about something that make others happy? make them smiles,or talking about the facts?
    So if i stand for my rights its not okay yes? Because its about my hard stuff experiences in Finland?
    So when, what time, and where can i stand for my rights if i close my mouth, if i afraid, if i don’t talk?
    However in Finland, i have no freedom at all, even on net people attacking me, this is also one of my hard experience, if u don’t call it negative.
    about that link u sent here

    Do u think they will publish blogs like mine?Experiences like mine?
    Am sure they wont and
    myself wont go there too, NEVER

    What does freedom mean to me if i censorship my experiences?
    What does moral mean for me if i shut my mouth?

    I do not care what Finns think about my words,and blogs… the most important for me is that
    I SPEAK ABOUT MY RIGHTS.
    I can not praise Finland because that’s against my moral.

    I wont attack myself.

    • Joonas

      “What does experience mean to you? So if i stand for my rights its not okay yes? Because its about my hard stuff experiences in Finland?”

      – It is good to talk about them as well, but I feel MT would give a more neutral view of the immigration if they would ALSO tell about the success stories. For example, your experience does not represents whole immigration population in Finland, but you are entitled to tell about your story as well.

      “However in Finland, i have no freedom at all, even on net people attacking me, this is also one of my hard experience, if u don’t call it negative.”

      – You have freedom to write and tell your experiences, but it also means people have freedom to disagree with you and question your story. I feel you would receive more positive reaction from the readers, if you would rephrase your sentences/messages differently (notice: not change, rephrase).

      “Do u think they will publish blogs like mine?Experiences like mine?
      Am sure they wont and
      myself wont go there too, NEVER”

      – Maybe you should read some of the stories in that site before judging. You can find all kind of stories from there, some of them are more negative than the others, but still quite objectively written.

      “I do not care what Finns think about my words,and blogs… the most important for me is that
      I SPEAK ABOUT MY RIGHTS.
      I can not praise Finland because that’s against my moral”

      – As I said, you are entitled to your opinion about it, but in your particular case, I feel you could have reacted differently and would have been able to avoid the problems you faced.

  4. Brave

    ohdake,

    No, it is not mark of low self-esteem, see for example: http://yle.fi/uutiset/finnish_silence_can_be_golden_says_american_expert/6454371 – it is just different. On the other hand Your inability to accept and/or understand that tells a lot about you.
    …..
    What is this link and example?
    It has no mean to me, not true at all…. because its me who is living here and have alive experience with Finns and Finland, and why u chose a blog that is praising Finland?
    Finns are not shy, no silence.
    so when racist polices were attacking me in social welfare service, everybody was silence and shy, yes?
    Racist social workers were shy? oh what a joke.
    that’s why they could not come and help, oh really?
    And when every organization took silence about my case…it was about shy… wow wow
    Shy and racist are different matters.
    Silence? R you sure?
    What a bout screams in night and loud ugly music for hour after hours?
    Other thing
    Also
    Talking about racism does not make a human racist.

    • ohdake

      so when racist polices were attacking me in social welfare service, everybody was silence and shy, yes?

      To be honest you really haven’t convinced people that the police would have been racist – just because they were forced to remove you from the premises does not mean that they would have been racist. If anything their behavior was pretty much what could be expected.

      Talking about racism does not make a human racist.

      Talking about racism, no. However making references to a whole group of people (in this case ethnic group known as Finns) in derogatory manner is. That is something you have also done.

  5. Brave

    Ohdake,
    To be honest you are really not honest.
    Whatever a Finnish police do in this country is legal and okay, this is not the first time that i get this answer from a Finn person, i completely used to such a answers from Finns, so am no wonder, no surprise, just very comfort.

    References?
    This is you who get this message from me and my blogs, YOU and people like you… you translate my words as you wish, tahts not new for me on MT(i never told all Finns but am telling most of Finns ) and this is a tactic from you and people like you , again i used to get this label, however this Racist mark is not belong to me, so automatically will back to those who attacking me with this label, because i am standing for my rights.
    Finland afraid of me, so much, because am a brave one, because it can not make me a silence slave for itself.

  6. Brave

    Joonas,

    Particular case?

    There are more than one, there are many not only one.
    And about my particular case why u don’t tell they should not attack, they should not beat, they should not treat racism but u just focus on me a foreign one?
    Also
    It was a trap for me, it was not like what ever u imagined in Ur thoughts, i had no way.
    YOU are a Finn U never will come close to me even one centimeter to understanding me and my problems, but U Joonas as a Finn always try to support your side… i have to say there is no side for us , we are both belong to human side, so you should not feel me as your enemy when am talking about some facts, u should not jump and support other side…
    When u telling me this

    *you could have reacted differently and would have been able to avoid the problems you faced*
    I know what u mean u don’t need repeat it for me,am not a child,but this kind of answers are like a whip on my spirit because you forget the point… u try to be in peace with me, but Ur answers all means u r with them because u simply leave them, u are silence about them, u don’t care what they done, u don’t want mix yourself in a hard matter, u don’t want tell anything about them….
    This is a Finn, you are a Finn, a Finn never tell yes you are a human, no/one has right to beat you… but a Finn always tell
    We are right, our law, police, system is best, u got what u deserve it, u done wrong, we are right, u done mistake, no/one done mistakes from us, that was Ur mistake, we are holy, u r guilty, u done crime, we are innocent, u don’t understand, we are understand.
    Oh thank you

    • Joonas

      “Particular case? There are more than one, there are many not only one.”

      – Ok, I meant this incident in the social service office and everything around it. If there are more to this, then unfortunately I have not read it.

      “And about my particular case why u don’t tell they should not attack, they should not beat, they should not treat racism but u just focus on me a foreign one?”

      – We have discussed this through-and-through before. I can’t agree how you handled the situation – not because you are a foreigner, but because I don’t approve your methods to act in the situation. For me, it would be a natural behavior to avoid complications with the law and obey the police. However, if you did not physically resist the police, I think they probably should have only escort (or if you refused to move, carry/drag) you out and not charge you.

      “It was a trap for me, it was not like what ever u imagined in Ur thoughts, i had no way.”

      – If I remember correctly, you were asked to leave several times. So, you had several ways.

      “YOU are a Finn U never will come close to me even one centimeter to understanding me and my problems, but U Joonas as a Finn always try to support your side”

      – Well, who is now using generalizations (some people might call it even – your favorite word – racism). As a Finn I’m entitled to my own opinions and these opinions do not represent the opinions of other Finns. Not all the Finns are the same, you know.

      “i have to say there is no side for us , we are both belong to human side, so you should not feel me as your enemy when am talking about some facts, u should not jump and support other side”

      – I agree. Look, I have nothing against you personally, even you might feel like I do. I can see you have suffered and you are having probably one of the toughest years in your life – I have some empathy towards you even I really don’t know you. But it does not change my opinion what happened you in the social service office. I have high trust on Finnish police and my first reaction – may the person be a native Finn or a foreigner – the person has done something wrong, if he/she is having problems with the law. Based on the information you told, there was things you could have done to avoid the situation and the police acted as they are trained.

      “u try to be in peace with me, but Ur answers all means u r with them because u simply leave them, u are silence about them, u don’t care what they done, u don’t want mix yourself in a hard matter, u don’t want tell anything about them….”

      – I care when some of them commits the crimes and defames the law, but in your case I don’t see anything illegal they would have done.

      “but a Finn always tell We are right, our law, police, system is best, u got what u deserve it, u done wrong, we are right, u done mistake, no/one done mistakes from us, that was Ur mistake, we are holy, u r guilty, u done crime, we are innocent, u don’t understand, we are understand.”

      – I like Finnish system, but it is far away from perfect and the Finns surely are not perfect. Actually many foreigners who are living here are much more valuable members to the society than some of the native Finns. And everybody make mistakes and we learn from them – it is just sometimes hard to admit to yourself.

  7. Brave

    Joonas,
    – Well, who is now using generalizations (some people might call it even – your favorite word – racism). As a Finn I’m entitled to my own opinions and these opinions do not represent the opinions of other Finns. Not all the Finns are the same, you know.

    And well, who is attacking me with racist label now?
    Is that a common behave from a Finn now a days to a person who stands for her right?
    Do you know Joonas that am not here for ur support or acceptance?
    Or do u know i do not care about this label, because its so clear why u and ur ( some people ) use this against me?
    I am standing for me for perfectly and then even on net you and ur some people try to shut up me?
    Yes u like Finnish system because it has benefits for you, and so u dont need see ur right and left… just in front of you, that’s easy.
    racism is not my favorite word because am not a racist, am a foreigner woman who suffers from racists and racism in Finland… but racist is a favorite system in Finland because racism has benefit for Finland.

    So don’t think that i can not answer ur impolite comment.
    And
    dont forget i dont acre about ur some people an dam not here for their support or acceptance, or words, or comments, or anything else.
    Am free
    Very free
    A golden free eagle

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