Society increasingly polarized

Society increasingly polarized

Muslims at prayer © Fredrik von Erichsen

According to the "Leipzig Center Study 2016," Islamophobia has increased significantly in Germany over the past two years. For example, every second interviewee stated that Muslims sometimes "make them feel like strangers in their own.

So it says in the survey presented on Wednesday in Berlin. Two years ago, the figure was 43 percent, and in 2009, about 32.3 percent. According to the study, around 41.4 percent are in favor of prohibiting Muslims from immigrating to Germany. Seven years ago, only one in five agreed with this statement.

AfD voters increasingly against Muslim immigration

His approval rating is highest among AfD voters, at 85.9 percent, and lowest among Greens, at 24.7 percent. The so-called "Leipzig Center Study 2016," entitled "The Disinhibited Center," examines authoritarian and right-wing extremist attitudes in Germany. Scientists at the University of Leipzig have been conducting the study since 2002 in cooperation with the Heinrich Boll Foundation, the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation and the Otto Brenner Foundation. The authors interviewed 2.420 people.

Respondents were also much more critical of other minorities than in earlier studies. For example, the percentage of those who believe that Sinti and Roma are prone to criminality rose from 44.2 to 58.5 percent. More than 80 percent of those surveyed also wanted "the state not to be generous" in examining asylum applications. (2009: 25.8 percent). Almost 60 percent believe that most asylum seekers do not really fear persecution in their home country. The percentage of those who consider homosexuality immoral has risen from 15.7 to 24.8 percent. According to the survey, 36.2 percent are in favor of marriages between two women or two men not being allowed (2009: 29.4 percent).

Growing support for right-wing authoritarian dictatorship

In addition, more Germans than in previous years are in favor of a right-wing authoritarian dictatorship. However, the percentage of agreement is in single digits. Accordingly, 7.6 percent of the East Germans surveyed and 4.3 of the West Germans support a right-wing authoritarian dictatorship. Two years ago, the figure was 5.6 percent among East Germans and 3.1 percent among West Germans. According to the authors, there was a low in approval in 2012 at 3.5 percent. The preference for a right-wing authoritarian system is highest among AfD voters (8.1 percent), followed by non-voters (6.9 percent), and lowest among the Greens (4.5 percent).

Despite this, the majority of respondents (52 percent) still believe that democracy works in the Federal Republic of Germany. (West Germans: 54.1 percent; East Germans 44.3 percent). This figure was 46 percent ten years ago, according to the survey. However, the more concretely the democratic system is discussed, the more reticent and rejecting the respondents' views become. For example, 26.4 percent think it would be pointless to get involved politically.

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Christina Cherry
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