Personally, I've become convinced that Germany isn't a safe country anymore. The constant danger of falling victim to a crime increases by the day, and living in a huge town as I do, doesn't help. More recently, however, a second danger has been manifesting itself:
Totalitarian methods of curbing free speech. Censorship, informing, reporting, denunciations, wrecking people's livelihood with the help of some misconstrued BDS- activity - all those things are alive and kicking. (Especially the latter).
And so I've been canvassing opinions of late. Asking anybody and everybody - friends,family, but also people I hardly know, people on social media what their thinking is: Do they think it's still safe to stay in Germany if you want to speak your mind.
As it is, it seems almost everybody has a "secret plan". Everybody I spoke (or had written communication with) replied that they thought things were still "dormant" at the moment. They were critically observing the deteriorating scenery - newspapers publishing only obvious government-approved content, people becoming aggressively active when confronted with dissent to the current government. (When did it actually start that ordinary people make it their business to defend a hare-brained politician, i,e. Merkel just because they feel that they share a socialist agenda with her and you ought to be punished if you don't?)
Back to people's secret plan. Most people (with the usual provisos of family and property which make leaving the country difficult, or in some cases impossible) had given it a lot of thought and had already pinpointed a preferred destination they'd be heading for if things were to get worse in Germany. There was also a (mostly non-bourgeois) minority of people who said they would definitely not leave and were prepared to join some form of struggle or confrontation if necessary.
I mustn't forget to mention that nobody was actually considering moving before the autumn election results were known. Many of course hoping for a defeat or in any case weakening of the current administration.
Here are the destinations most frequently mentioned:
- Australia/New Zealand (something comforting to being on the other side of the world)
- Hungary (one of my own favourites)
- some fair weather destinations like Tenerife or Madeira
Thanks to all who were kind enough to share their views with me.