UPDATE 2: Somali young man leaps to his death in Oulu, Finland

by , under All categories, Enrique

By Enrique Tessieri

The Oulu police have now admitted as Migrant Tales did first in Finland that the victim who leaped to his death from a sixth floor was a Somali.  Kaleva, the Oulu daily, quotes Antti Räsänen of the police stating that “nothing points to racism [hate crime] but we haven’t ruled out that possibility.” 

What next?

The interesting matter to watch is how long it take the police to announce the motive of the crime.

We know from a police statement on Tuesday that three people barged into the home of the Somali before he leaped from the sixth floor.

 

  1. Klay_Immigrant

    It’s safe and logical to assume that this Somali guy did something very seriously wrong to piss these guys off to warrant some kind of reprisal. What? That’s the big question. I mean it’s hardly a random or spontaneous attack seeming as he lived on the 6th floor and a chainsaw was used.

    But Enrique 3 articles in quick succession on this subject before an investigation has shown anything seems excessive, all just because he happens to be Somali. What if he was a Finn? Ofcourse no one would give a shit then on here because a Somali’s life is somehow more valued than a Finn’s life for some.

  2. BlandaUpp

    Klay

    For all we know, he could have been attacked because he kissed the wrong girl or gave the wrong response to an insult. You’re too quick to jump to the defense of these idiots.

  3. eh

    If it were a white guy shoved out a window by 3 black dudes it wouldn’t be a hatecrime. It would just be a boring plain old crime. No media spotlight and no weeping editorials. No ABLOO-BLOO-BLOO-ing on anti-racist websites.

  4. A concerned response...

    Ok, I feel that I have to respond to the above comments.

    Klay_Immigrant: You are correct that this attack does not appear to be spontaneous. The attackers were obviously pissed off as this unfortunate guy for some reason. The police may come to the conclusion that this was not a racist incident, but that some other motive was at play.

    As for the life of this young man somehow being more valued, what nonsense! All human life is of EQUAL value. By blogging about this incident, Enrique is rather seeking to alert public attention to deeply disturbing case. The extreme means the attackers used to break into the young man’s apartment alone suggests that this case would attract the media’s gaze. We know for a fact that similar violent crimes involving ‘Finnish’ victims HAVE received a great deal of attention.

    To speculate that, if this were a Finn, it would receive less attention simply demonstrates that deeply entrenched view of Us and Them. Finns come in all shapes, sizes, colors and creeds. It would be equally disturbing if the victim here was a sexual minority, a linguistic minority (i.e., a Swedish, Russian, or Yiddish speaker), a religious minority, or something else.

    Eh: You seem to define the actions of others bound to their skin coloration. If there “black guys” (your words NOT mine) were to push a “white guy” to his death, the same would apply. The act might be considered a hate crime if the police and courts establish that the actions of the three men were ‘racially’ motivated. This is worth remembering!

    It is commonly known that our society (including the police) holds negative views of persons with a somali backgrounds (and persons of immigrant origin). By bringing attention to this case, Enrique and others seek to ensure that the motives that these three men had for attacking the victim are discussed openly.

  5. Mark

    @a concerned response

    By bringing attention to this case, Enrique and others seek to ensure that the motives that these three men had for attacking the victim are discussed openly.

    I think that’s it in a nutshell. I think people assume if the story appears on Migrant Tales that it would have a racial element or relate to immigration. At the moment, that has to be a strong suspicion, though I think we all accept that it might not have anything to do with the fact he was Somali.

    There are several elements here that are worrying from an immigrant’s point of view on hearing this story, and really, it is the responsibility of the Police to address these concerns as quickly as possible.

    1) It was a gang of three men, not simply one man venting his personal displeasure.
    2) The violent force of entry is truly horrific, in any circumstances. Someone coming through your front door with a chainsaw is going to put the fear of God into you.
    3) Such an event suggests that the victim was known to the gang of men, though he was only 18 years old, and that it may have been a reprisal. It’s also true that for some racists, very innocuous actions can strongly offend. We don’t know yet, but it’s another valid concern that we would have.

    I think people like Klay, eh, and Allan who comment on this blog regularly should understand that the immigrant community feels under threat in Finland at the moment, partly as the result of the PS election support, and also the way they have been denigrated by some Finns who seem to only want to say negative or very negative things about immigrants. That itself appears like a ‘barrage’. And even if it comes from a minority, there are plenty of people who would claim not to be racists who nevertheless defend this current ‘anti-immigration’ climate.

    If the only response of these people is ‘if you don’t like it, leave’, then it’s very clear that they are thugs, or at the very least ‘keyboard thugs’.

  6. Seppo

    Okay it seems that there are a lot of rumours going on and we should not believe all of them. I suggest all of you who can also to take a look at other sources than Migrant Tales. This is the latest from Iltalehti: http://www.iltalehti.fi/uutiset/2012020115151403_uu.shtml

    1) It was a gang of three men, not simply one man venting his personal displeasure.
    – According to IL, a woman, her brother and a third guy, all drunk.
    2) The violent force of entry is truly horrific, in any circumstances. Someone coming through your front door with a chainsaw is going to put the fear of God into you
    – A metal pipe (?) (metalliputki), not a chainsaw. Horrible still.
    3) Such an event suggests that the victim was known to the gang of men, though he was only 18 years old, and that it may have been a reprisal.
    – He was know to the woman, who had been at his place just before, they started fighting (both drunk?), she left and told her brother (drunk) to come and defend her and the brother took another random guy with him. Not exactly a gang.

    “It’s also true that for some racists, very innocuous actions can strongly offend”

    I think this is exactly what happened. A small fight, but the brother was drunk and possibly racist and wanted to defend his sister. Then it just ended up horribly.

    Let’s keep on following. The version I quoted was Iltalehti’s today’s version, there will be new ones.

    • Enrique

      –I think this is exactly what happened. A small fight, but the brother was drunk and possibly racist and wanted to defend his sister. Then it just ended up horribly.

      A small fight?! A man died as a result.

  7. Allan

    Seppo – if the brother had been an Arab and gone to defend his siter then would that have been “racist” or just “multicultural”? I just object to double standards.

  8. A concerned response... (2nd post)

    Allan: The double standard arguement is a best extremely weak. (Please read my posting above.) It simply exposes a threatened ingroup mentality – i.e. if ‘we’ do something ‘we’re’ called racists, but if ‘they’ do something ‘they’re’ excused in the name of multiculturalism/diversity.

    Speculating about the motivations of these attackers does not entail any justification bad behaviour in the behalf of minority persons. Nor does it imply that one should excuse such behaviour or attitudes held by members of minorities simply because they possess a minority status.

    Such arguments (i.e., playing the double standard card) are rather rhetorical devices employed to detract from the issue(s) at stake. By diverting the discussion towards (real or imagined) double standards, you (perhaps unwittingly) seek to obscure or reduce the critical impact of a discussion about the ugly face of racism that is becoming evermore evident on the streets of all cities in Finland.

    Whether this case was or was not a ‘hate crime’ is incidental to the overall discussion. Blogs such as this seek to openly debate the current tensions in our society with a view to equal recognition and respect for ALL members of our society.

    My Finland is a country where respect for all human beings is equal, a society where knowledge of the self (i.e., the majority) does not entail a bigoted hatred, distrust or fear of the other.

    As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” Please remember this.

  9. Allan

    “It simply exposes a threatened ingroup mentality – i.e. if ‘we’ do something ‘we’re’ called racists, but if ‘they’ do something ‘they’re’ excused in the name of multiculturalism/diversity. ”

    No, that IS a FACT – it shows double standards. Like that only white people can be racists.

  10. A concerned response... (3rd post)

    Allen: You are simply incorrect. You Clearly have not comprehended what I have written and choose to stick to a position that does not hold water. Simply stating something is a ‘fact’ does not make it so simply because you believe it.

    The basis of the genocide in Rwanda was due to racist attitudes (along with other intersecting factors) being mobilized into an intergroup conflict.

    Furthermore, research in social psychology has also shown that racist views may be held by all phenotypes (‘races’ in the popular lexicon).

  11. justicedemon

    Klay

    Ainoa mitattava ja siten kiistatta olemassaoleva ihmisarvo on yksilön instrumentaalinen arvo. Yksilöt voidaan perustellusti asettaa arvohierarkiaan sen mukaan, miten paljon heidän kykyjensä tai osaamisensa poistaminen yhteisön käytöstä heikentäisi yhteisöä.

    Scripta, 13 April 2005

  12. Allan

    “Simply stating something is a ‘fact’ does not make it so simply because you believe it.”

    It is not me believing it. Its a whole lot of other people. I am totally agreeing with you – but you are claiming that what I am saying is untrue,. look for example how the police are putting in statistics for “racism as a motive”. If a Finn and Rwandan fight its always a racist motive, but if two Rwandans fight its not. That is a fact and that is double standards.

  13. Mark

    Allan

    “No, that IS a FACT – it shows double standards. Like that only white people can be racists.”

    Still peddling lies, I see. You have been told a dozen or more times now that white people can be racists. There is absolutely no reason for you to carry on making that suggestion in this forum. It’s acknowledged. However, if you draw attention to it only as a way of discrediting the entire racism debate, then clearly you cannot give it up.

    look for example how the police are putting in statistics for “racism as a motive”. If a Finn and Rwandan fight its always a racist motive, but if two Rwandans fight its not. That is a fact and that is double standards.

    This is not exactly true. They are not putting it down as a ‘motive’. They are simply recording it. JD knows the ins and outs of this Finnish system, and perhaps why it was decided to do it this way in the first place. I think it had something to do with underreporting or almost a total lack of reporting of race crime, which contradicted evidence given in surveys among immigrants on racial crime.

    I just object to double standards.

    lol. That’s funny. You object to double standards, but you don’t object to white Finns assaulting immigrants, a white Finn throwing an 8-year girl off a train and calling her an ape, or white Finns verbally and racially abusing a 14-year-old girl on the Metro every week. Nope, he hasn’t once objected to any of that. In fact, you haven’t objected to a single racist incident mentioned in this blog. Yes, but you are concerned about how the statistics are collected. Yep, Allan has his priorities sorted out.

  14. Mark

    ACR

    Furthermore, research in social psychology has also shown that racist views may be held by all phenotypes (‘races’ in the popular lexicon).

    There is no direct correlation between phenotype and races. The phenotype is an individual, and while individuals share phenotypic characteristics, there are not distinct ‘phenotypes’ that correspond to specific races. Phenotypes are the biological expression of the genotype, and the genetic variation within races is greater than that between races. Race is something of an artificial creation, taking in ancestry, ethnicity, and appearance. Biologists and sociologists tend not to use it as a classification.

  15. A concerned response... (a much needed correction) ;)

    Mark: Thank you. You are indeed correct, I should have specified further *( commonly interpreted, somewhat incorrectly, as ‘races’ in the popular lexicon).

    I am a researcher and should not be sloppy when writing my postings. You are also correct that ‘race’ (I always use inverted commas to highlight the false nature of the concept) is an artificial concept.

    Sadly as we see in the postings above, however, that the artificiality of the concept does not rob it of its discursive life. Despite ‘race’ being falsified as a myth, people still understand difference in ‘racial’ terms. The discursive reality of ‘race’ leads to real consequences – racism.

    I’ll be more careful in my explanations in future. 😉

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