The Feminist Year 2019 in Germany

Government

Feminists are trying to undermine the right to vote. Politicians and leading media are calling for a change in the electoral laws. Lawyer Silke Laskowski, “the mastermind of various legislative initiatives for equal participation of women in the electoral law”, claims that one must “first make sure that women have the same chances as men to be nominated”, because the possibility to get the seats by their own efforts “presupposes that all women are willing to enter these male structures”. The parties have the obligation to ensure equal participation, she says, “and ideally they would then find enough women. (…) But should there really be too few, yes, then the parties must pull their socks up and look for and find women”.

The German Women’s Council launches a petition for a parity law based on the French model (proportional candidate lists plus quota regulation for direct elections) and calls on female parliamentarians not to agree to any electoral law reform without parity. An alliance of women from nearly all parties discusses how the proportion of women in parliaments can be increased. Justice Minister Katarina Barley signals support. The German Association of Women Lawyers, which is planning a strategy to ensure that “parity laws do not fail before the constitutional courts”, is proposing changes to party laws and party financing, for example by giving more money to those parties that have a particularly large number of women.

Meanwhile, Brandenburg creates precedents. According to a draft by Silke Laskowski, the government of Brandenburg decides on an amendment to the electoral law, coming into force on 30 June 2020, obliging parties to put equal numbers of men and women on election lists. There will be exceptions for parties such as the Women’s Party.

Thuringia is the second German state to follow suit, passing a law requiring parties to alternate between men and women on their lists for state elections. The Greens in Bavaria are even more radical and demand that voters have to choose one woman and one man per constituency. A proposal by the Left Wing Party for a new parity law is meeting with resistance from the Greens, whose proportion of women is higher than the proposal provides for. “We must be able to keep this quota”. It would be absurd if the Greens were forced to reduce the proportion of women to 50%.

The Women’s Union demands the binding equal allocation of list places in the Conservative Party (CDU): “Men, not women, often run for election in the constituencies. This is also due to the fact that women more often than men decide not to enter into the tough debate about a constituency”.

Following the elections in Saxony and Brandenburg, which were successful for the Right Wing Party (AfD), commentators are propagating the idea of depriving men of the right to vote, or are even rambling: “The male ego rests on the pillars of possession, exploitation of land and people and the appropriation of female sexuality”.

Inspectors are horrified to discover what damage Ursula von der Leyen has caused to the Ministry of Defence: Violations of public procurement law, protectionism, contracts prohibiting the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) from repairing weapons, and expenditure of 155 million Euros in the first six months for external consultancy, almost as much as all the other 13 ministries put together. A senior official is trying to remove files with doctored consultant accounts, other documents are being blackened.

Von der Leyen escapes the appointed Committee of Inquiry by having herself nominated as a possible EU Commission head. Political opponents who circulate her sin register are put under pressure and row back. Her candidacy speech in the European Parliament is full of feminist slogans. On 16 July, von der Leyen is narrowly confirmed.

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer succeeds Ursula von der Leyen as Minister of Defence. While the USA and Russia have largely given up disarmament control, all 9 nuclear powers are expanding their arsenals and there is all kinds of cause for concern, feminist politicians are as usual only revolving around themselves at the Munich Security Conference: “If only men develop algorithms, how are they supposed to depict a world that also works for women”.

At their party conference, the Greens decide that men no longer have a say in whether a debate may be continued if no woman speaks up. Furthermore, women may only be represented by female substitute delegates, even if there are not enough women available.

International Women’s Day on 8 March becomes a new public holiday in Berlin.

Media, Censorship & Manipulation

According to various surveys, many people in Germany no longer feel free to publicly express their own opinion. A journalist of the newspaper Zeit interprets it like this: “People are speaking more sensitively”. The assertion that no one is prevented from expressing his or her opinion, as Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier claims, misses the point when the price is driven up by insults, threats of violence and defamation at the workplace. Especially at universities, the call for regulations, bans and language rules is unmistakable. In politics and the media, it is now fashionable to sell contempt for democratic processes as a defence of true democracy. Members of the German Association of Judges visit the Federal Constitutional Court and exchange views on “the limits of free speech, especially regarding the protection of state officials”.

The elites’ fear of the people goes so far that security precautions at the Bundestag are to be increased by safety fences and a 10-metre wide ditch.

The Ministry of the Interior wants to force messenger providers to make encrypted communication readable. The Ministers of Justice want to weaken the security of the mobile phone standard 5G in order to allow investigators to access it. Horst Seehofer, Federal Minister of the Interior, presents a draft bill according to which suspects can be forced by coercive detention to give out passwords for online services.

Katarina Barley’s successor, Minister of Justice Christine Lambrecht, presents a legislative package against hate crime, according to which authorities will be able to require internet services to hand over their customers’ passwords without a court order. She also wants to create 400 new positions in the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) to enforce the Network Enforcement Act.

In Baden-Wuerttemberg the police law is tightened. The Office for the Protection of the Constitution of Saxony-Anhalt will be allowed to hack computers and smartphones.

Again and again, selected journalists are invited to secret meetings at the Chancellery. After the Administrative Court of Berlin decided that “dates, topics, participants and locations” must be made public, the Chancellor’s Office complained that the government must retain the possibility of examining, in camera, “to what extent certain political positions can be communicated through the media”.

The Public Broadcasting Corporation of the ARD reacted to the massive loss of confidence by commissioning an expert report in 2017 that is now published and recommends framing, i.e. propagandistic language manipulation. Ideological framing of terms is intended to steer social discussions, for example on increasing contributions, in the desired direction (“If you want to get your fellow citizens to understand the added value of the ARD (…), then your communication must always take the form of moral arguments”). Demands for a reduction of financial resources are described as outrageous, as a process which is “in reality a demand for less democracy”. Not only are tricks and emotions being propagated instead of facts and objectivity, but there is also massive agitation against competitors (private broadcasting corporations).

The announcement of the report triggers a wave of criticism. ARD Secretary General Susanne Pfab appeases: This is just a discussion topic, a food for thought. Creator of the report and accompanying workshops (cost: 120,000 Euros) is feminist Elisabeth Wehling, who runs a Berkeley International Framing Institute, which suggests a non-existent connection to the US university of the same name and only seems to exist on paper. Funded by George Soros, the Bertelsmann-Heinrich-Böll- and Friedrich-Ebert-Foundations, among others.

A UN study, which speaks of 464,000 people who became victims of homicides worldwide in 2017, over 80 percent of whom were men, is worked up by broadcasting company Deutschlandfunk like this: “More than 87,000 women and girls are victims of murder and manslaughter”.

At the University of Cologne, a lecturer is trying to force students to speak gendered language, and in doing so she makes assertions such as: “Universities are not a place of free speech”.

The Amadeu Antonio Foundation, which together with the Federal Agency for Civic Education acts unilaterally against political extremism and plays down left-wing dictatorships, is attempting in cooperation with the Federal Congress of Municipal Women’s Offices to defame criticism of gender ideology under the guise of fighting right-wing extremism (“Strategies against Equality. How Right-Wing Populists Act”).

Blogger Julia Probst advocates using cameras and lip readers to monitor people in football stadiums.

Work, Money & Health

On 1 January 2020, the new Anti-Discrimination Law of Berlin will come into force, which abolishes the presumption of innocence by reversing the burden of proof, legalises unequal treatment “if it serves the common good”, and allows women’s lobbies to have a say in determining what constitutes discrimination, because it is “irrefutably suspected” that such anti-discrimination associations, which are supported by state funds, “provide a guarantee for the proper fulfilment of tasks”.

On Equal Pay Day, the Berlin district of Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf calls on the business community in the district to grant women a “21 percent discount on a product or service”.

On International Women’s Day, Berlin’s public transport operators are offering a ticket for women that is 21 percent cheaper. Men who get such a ticket are considered fare dodgers. There is also a vending machine that issues annual and monthly tickets for women at a reduced price. A camera scans the customer’s face and men receive an error message. The Anti-Discrimination Office dismisses complaints with reference to an alleged “factual inequality” of women.

News from gender pricing: The regular VAT rate (19 per cent) on tampons is being scandalised as a “luxury tax” which discriminates against women. Several leading media are eager to take up the topic. An online petition is signed by almost 200,000 people and ensures that the German government reduces the VAT on hygiene products for women to 7 percent.

The German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) publishes a household study which allegedly states that women and men work approximately the same amount during the week, while household work on Sundays is largely be done by women. In order to achieve this statement, facts were manipulated in such a way that it was not men’s weekly overtime that was taken as the basis, but only a single day of the week.

Sexuality & Violence

The Federal Ministry for Women’s Affairs is launching a 120 million Euro investment programme which will finance the expansion, conversion and new construction of women’s shelters and counselling centres over the next 4 years.

In Halle (Saale) a right-wing extremist attacks a synagogue. Two political scientists talk about it: “This is the basic structure of a patriarchal society. (…) On the one hand there is a deeply rooted hatred of women and hatred of queer people. In the conspiracy ideological narratives this then comes together with racism and anti-Semitism”. “Basically feminism is also a good project for men. Then they don’t have to be assholes anymore, but can become nice, solidary people”.

Feminist Autonomous Cell proclaims its intention to fight “against the knots of the capitalist-patriarchal machinery”, carries out an arson attack on a city mission in Tübingen and encourages other people to do the same: “We would welcome further actions against antifeminist institutions and participants. Because these exist everywhere – organize gangs – flatten them”.

Family, Fathers & Children

On 18 March, a hearing of the Legal Committee of the Bundestag on the Law of Ancestry takes place. While lobby representatives of women’s associations and reproductive medicine are represented, fathers’ associations are refused to participate and, in addition, the public is left out in the cold, with the government coalition parties preventing the hearing from being broadcast via Bundestag TV, which is otherwise customary. The hearing makes the double standards of the prevailing state feminism visible: motherhood is defined biologically, fatherhood, on the other hand, by means of the presumption of marriage or the marital status; women, in contrast to men, cannot be expected to provide information about “intimate multiple sexual intercourse”; and the term “father” is to be largely replaced by “2nd parent” or “co-mother”.

All this is part of the attempt to destroy the family as a bulwark against state indoctrination. The “parentless society” that would establish “pregnancy justice” is being propagated in the newspaper Zeit. Antje Schrupp (“A woman should not need a man to bear a child”) defames fathers in the magazine Spiegel as “sperminators” and speaks out “against the fact that pure spermination already constitutes paternity rights”.

On request, Katarina Barley refuses to name the experts in the Family Policy Working Groups of the Ministry of Justice and charges 30 Euros for this failure to provide information. She responds to a complaint about this by sending an enforcement notice.

On 13 February, the Bundestag’s Legal Committee deals with the proposal of the Free Democratic Party (classical liberal) to introduce joint custody as a guiding model. As usual, fathers’ associations are not invited, while mothers’ lobbyists are allowed to express their views. This hearing is also not broadcast via Bundestag TV. Some leading media are already making a mood against the proposal in advance by making the polemic of the mothers’ lobbyists their own. Their hypocritical argument that the government does not want to impose a model on parents ignores the fact that this is exactly what is happening at present: courts are forcing a single mother / father family as guiding model, which is always enforced against one parent and usually to the detriment of the children, often without even hearing the father. Unsurprisingly, in the Bundestag debate on 15 March the motion is rejected by all other parties.

After three years of deliberations, the Working Group on Custody of the Ministry of Justice merely presents a thesis paper which in principle grants both parents custody of their children after a divorce, and is apparently playing for time, especially since neither joint custody as a guiding model nor mandatory mediation is proposed. But even that is unbearable for women’s lobbies such as the German Women Lawyers’ Association and the Mothers’ Initiative MIA. According to MIA, this would “completely undermine the protection of mothers in or after violent relationships” – fathers who are forced to leave their children to violent mothers do not appear in the world view of these feminists. Particularly perfidious is the often used trick of turning the anti-male realities against men, for example by pretending that the situation in which the vast majority of divorcees are forced to live corresponds to the wish of those affected, and that the campaigns of lobby organisations are proof of the population’s unwillingness to change.

In September, the majority of representatives in the Committee on Legal Affairs reject the introduction of joint custody as guiding model, thereby ignoring Council of Europe Resolution 2079, the positive experience with this model in other countries and the wishes of the majority of the population in Germany.

Gender, Diversity & Misandry

In 2017, gender studies were funded by the German government with 16.8 million Euros, and in 2018 with 19.5 million Euros. In addition, there is the Women Professorship Programme, which has already funded over 500 gender professorships and is now entering the third phase (until 2022) “following a positive evaluation of the 2nd programme phase”, for which 200 million Euros have been earmarked. The government coalition parties consider gender studies to be useful because they provide “important scientific findings on causes and mechanisms which impede equality”. The Greens call on the government to expand the promotion of gender research. This is not only taking place in Germany: Worldwide, the German government is funding gender projects in the millions, for example to “promote gender justice in South Africa”.

The City of Hannover wants toilets for the third sex, and a similar situation applies to some primary schools in Bavaria. In the future, carpenters and bakers will also have to have their own toilets for the third sex and handle job advertisements accordingly, otherwise they will face severe penalties.

The Federal Agency for Civic Education publishes an essay by Laura Moisi of the Humboldt University of Berlin, in which, with reference to the cultural scientist Rosie Cox, it is claimed that garbage is socially constructed and serves to exclude others, that notions of cleanliness are “based on racist correspondences of whiteness with purity” and that “the proximity to dirt and garbage” is “globally racially and sexually structured (…). The private sphere thus becomes the sphere in which social inequality is continuously maintained”.

Since the then women’s representative of the City of Hannover, Ursula Müller, enforced in 1992 that for pictograms of bicycles on the street the middle bar which marks the bicycle a man’s bicycle has to be omitted, construction companies are always busy scraping away this middle bar.

Ilona Horwath, Professor of Technology and Diversity at the University of Paderborn, heads the Fortesy project to investigate the fire brigade service, funded by the Ministry of Education and Research. She complains that white heterosexual men from the working class shape the image of the firefighter and thus represent an obstacle to integration and efficiency. Fire brigades are “known for their resistance to change, which is essentially fed by social dynamics”.

More and more queer-feminist lesbians are hijacking successful gay projects such as the Gay Museum, which is still kept alive exclusively by volunteer gay men, but is run and conceived by lesbian women who express their contempt for men by cleaning rooms of male energies in a magical ritual.

The City of Hannover is issuing recommendations for a gender-equitable administrative language, a euphemism intended to hide the fact that this is actually a regulation (“The new recommendation is binding for all correspondence from the administration”) and employees who block the new rules must expect consequences, according to Equal Opportunities Officer Friederike Kämpfe.

In other cities, too, the genderization of language is progressing. Giessen is introducing the so-called gender star (“Einwohner*in“, meaning: inhabitant / female inhabitant), and in Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, Berlin and Schleswig-Holstein work is underway on corresponding regulations.

The Trade Union for Education and Science in Lower Saxony goes even further and wants to introduce language dictation at school: “Language influences consciousness. That’s why it’s good if gender-equitable language is taught from childhood on”.

The most male-despicting advertisement of the year is from food company Edeka (“Thank you mommy that you’re not daddy”) and shows fathers on Mother’s Day as parenting failures and despicable types. The clip is from the advertising agency Jung von Matt, which employs feminists in management positions (Katja Kraus, managing director: “Every woman should be a feminist”).

“Until we have abolished patriarchy, we urgently need strict income and wealth limits for men” (newspaper Neues Deutschland).

The environmental protection and the Fridays for Future movement are also used to demonise men. Luisa Neubauer: “If today’s time teaches us anything, it is that #Women will change the world. Because #Men have not got it managed”. Climate change is supposed to be “essentially a sexist crisis”. Similarly several local groups of Fridays for Future: Bremen is holding a workshop on Feminism in the climate crisis, Dortmund Feminism and empowerment at FfF, Erfurt explains that climate protection is not possible without feminism, the Female Future Force Day is taking place in Berlin-Tempelhof. And in Regensburg, the generation that wastes resources like no other is scolding “the old, white men who got us into this mess”.

A young publicist on Twitter: “I hate men and hope that in the climate crisis they don’t die sooner, but have to suffer even more slowly and painfully”.

This article was originally posted at Alternativlos-Aquarium and is reposted here with permissions.