By Enrique Tessieri
If there is one matter that I would wish stopped in Finland it is the culture of fear being spread by the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party. We can all remember prior to the April election how some members of the right-wing populist party portrayed immigrants and refugees as gang rapists and social welfare shoppers as soon as they crossed the border into Finland.
The fear-mongering by the PS appears to have no end. It changes constantly according to the political situation. Yesterday immigrants were their favorite target and today it is the financially embattled European Union.
I was quite astonished when I read a letter to the editor published this week in Mikkeli daily Länsi-Savo. A prominent PS politician sounded the alarm bells claiming an apocalyptic end to Finnish culture and language if the EU ever became a federation.
He compared our fate as a “small nation” to other Fenno-Ugric tribes of Russia that numbered a few thousand at the most.
Certainly it is a sad matter that our Fenno-Ugric relatives were devoured by a bigger and more powerful Russian culture but to compare their fate to a nation of over five million is ludicrous.
If Finnish culture is so vulnerable as the PS politician wanted to show to outside encroachment, why didn’t it disappear when Finns formed part of the Swedish and Russian Empire for about 700 years?
What will be the next fear-mongering stunt by the PS?
That we are being invaded by Martians?