By Enrique Tessieri
The recent anti-immigration killings in Norway at the hands of Anders Breivik and this week in Italy by Gianluca Casseri show how xenophobic fairy tales can turn a person into a killer. As populist and far-right parties in Europe continue to throw petrol at the flames of their hate speech, it is only a question of time when new Breiviks and Casseris will appear on the scene.
The delusion and lack of resolve by our societies does not only hinge today on the EU’s lack of resolve to tackle its serious financial issues, but the belief that we can keep our rising nationalism and hate speech on a short leash.
This social ogre, which has been let out of the cage in Finland as well, is trying its hardest to convince us that its pathological social behavior is normal. There is nothing normal about racism never mind spreading hatred of other groups especially if our society is based on social justice.
These groups that the term “fatherland” to justify their actions are playing with fire. Not only are they weakening our national icons and cherished symbols of our society that are supposed to stand for noble values such as acceptance, they are shooting them in the head.
When looking at any far-right or right-wing populist parties in Europe, we should as concerned citizens walk that extra mile and ask what is the real message behind their populist soundbites. The fact that they don’t tell us what they are is the clearest indication of not only of their reckless opportunism, but the fact that society would never accept their real views.
Certainly spreading urban myths peppered with racism and xenophobia have an impact on Europe. Apart from threatening to weaken our present values, they encourage and offer smoking guns for future and present killers to terrorize our societies with real weapons and/or hate speech.
Breivik and Casseri are fresh examples of what Europe has in store for itself if it does not face the challenge posed by parties that attack society with their hate speech.
We must act now or suffer the consequences by others who paint our world with the somber colors of hate speech.