Helsingin Sanomat poll reveals Finns’ opposition to cultural diversity

by , under Enrique

A poll commissioned by Helsingin Sanomt, Finland’s largest-circulation daily, reveals that 53% of those polled agreed (22%) or partially agreed (31%) that immigrants should aim at becoming as Finnish as possible. That compares with 18% and 30%, respectively, in 2011. If there is something worrying that the poll shows, it’s Finland’s growing opposition to cultural diversity. 

Kuvankaappaus 2013-9-20 kello 20.08.06
 Compared with 2006, when the poll was first taken, a growing number of Finns want immigrants to adopt their values and culture. Read full story here 

What the poll doesn’t make clear is what becoming Finnish means.

Those that are in favor of one-way adaption, or assimilation, would probably have a difficult time explaining what being or becoming Finnish means or implies.

The poll is another sad example of how newspapers perceive immigrants and Finland’s ever-growing cultural diversity.

The question asked by the poll is similar to asking white people if they think there is racism in our country or if they would want more immigrants to move here. The answers we’d get are obvious.

Moreover, the poll reveals contradictions of how some Finns feel the law should be applied to immigrants and visible minority groups.

If Section 17 of the Finnish Constitution defends every person’s right in this country to maintain and develop their own language and culture, why do the majority of those polled by Helsingin Sanomat disagree? What does it reveal about our attitudes to people who are different from us?

It’s pretty clear that it shows how intolerance functions in Finland. The following cartoon below says it all.


These type of polls not only show our intolerance and prejudices, they reveal as well similar attitudes of the Finnish media that publish them. They show a worrying trend: Finland’s growing opposition to our cultural diversity as more immigrants move to this country.