By Enrique Tessieri
People who think that only white Finns are “real” Finns are, in my opinion, seriously mistaken. Their mistaken view represents a modern segregated view of society we saw in the United States before the 1960s and in worst cases in South Africa before 1994. The “Only Whites” sign isn’t posted on doors these days but in their minds.
By celebrating our Finnish identity on our cultural and ethnic terms, we mean being included in Finnish society through those magic words, acceptance and respect. In such a Finland, everyone is included. Nobody is left out.
Despite our good intentions towards others and ourselves, there will be some who will not come on board.
Today, Finland’s third-largest party, the Perussuomalaiset (PS), has declared war on immigrants and our cultural diversity. If such a party ever had its way, our society is in deep trouble. Instead of building bridges between us, they will destroy them with their ignorance, chicanery and political opportunism.
“Real” Finns were, are and will be culturally diverse Finns living in a society that encourages inclusion.