Monday, January 11, 2016

The Cologne New Year’s Eve Sex Attacks

Cologne Mayor's Advice: Keep them at an 'Arm's Length'

I am leaving for Europe in a few weeks and as I am reading about the latest events in Cologne, Germany, I am wondering if I should stay away from train stations while I am traveling. On New Year's Eve, a large group of young hoodlums, described by the local police as having a 'North African or Arabic' appearance, made a coordinated effort to assault, rob and sexually molest numerous women around the 'Hauptbahnhof', the central train station.

I know from personal experience that even in Holland, one of the most well organized and civilized countries in Europe, the ‘centraal station’ in Amsterdam is one of the more colorful, combustible and dirty places you can find. My latest memory is of a young female drug addict peeing on the floor, oblivious to the throng of commuters walking past her.

So, I am wondering: what was the scene like at the Hauptbahnhof in Cologne? Hundreds of young men stumbling about, drunk, vomiting, exploding fireworks in the middle of a crowd. What happened to law and order? Why were they in the possession of fireworks, knives, bottles of beer and dope?

In Boston, where I live, it is illegal for private citizens to use fireworks. You run the risk of going to jail if you do. It is also illegal to drink beer, wine, or other alcoholic beverage in public places that do not have a special permit. What about knives? Again, in this jungle we call America, it is illegal to carry knives, open or concealed. Any other sharp object that is perceived as dangerous will be confiscated and the one in possession will quickly end up in the slammer.

What does the German law say about all this? Would these hoodlums not be guilty of multiple crimes, including of course, fondling and raping young girls, robbing whomever happened to be within their reach and spitting at policemen? Compared to what happened in Cologne, the traditional New Year’s Eve ball drop on Times Square, where a million American goodie-two shoes gather to celebrate, (albeit under the watchful eye of 6,000 uniformed police officers, undercover agents, bomb sniffing dogs and radiation detectors), must look like an event for wimps.

Where were the law enforcers in Cologne? According to witnesses there were about a thousand of these young baboons on the square. How can that not set of some kind of alarm bell? Do Germans live in lala land or is protecting their citizens beyond their budget?

Just to add fuel to the fire, the mayor of Cologne, Henriette Reker has come out with an astounding statement: ‘Women should keep any member of the male species at 'arms length' (einearmlaenge). This spawned a deluge of hash tags on Twitter, ridiculing her statement and blaming her for putting the burden on the women who were sexually harassed. And this from someone who has been a victim of a knife attack herself, for being sympathetic to immigrants.

Her proposed ‘code of conduct’ for women not only says that it's a woman's responsibility to tame the over-sexed, maladjusted, power-hungry rabid dogs roaming around the streets of one of the most civilized countries in the world, but in her statement, you can hear the first rumblings of a tacit acceptance of a fait accompli: ‘We will have to live with that kind of behavior, so we might as well make the best of it.’

Although Belgian Minister Theo Francken denies any connection to the Cologne incident, Belgium now requires immigrants to take compulsory ‘respect for women’ classes. Would a three-months long course in erase the ingrained effects of a culture where women are the property of men, not considered worth much more than cattle? Norway and Denmark have also made these ‘sex-education’ classes mandatory. Of course this was immediately branded as racism by some opposition groups, My, oh my, if we have to teach young men that it’s wrong to rape women, we sure have our work cut out for us.

Women have always been a civilizing force in society. Two and a half thousand years ago, Lysistrata persuaded the women of Sparta and Athens to withhold sexual privileges, so as to stop the Peloponnesian war (a myth, to be sure, but a good early example of the “sex strike” used to tame the natural violence of males). Similarly, the Wild West before the arrival of women was just that… wild. Maybe Henriette Reker was right in saying that it is up to women to tame these rabid dogs. Eine ‘armlaenge’ is a good start, although we wouldn’t say no to a little help from the Police. leave comment here