With 1 568 walks and demonstrations, more places in Germany took part in the Monday demonstrations than ever before. A week ago it was around 1500. And particularly noteworthy: More and more people who have been vaccinated are mingling with the critics of the measure.
An estimated 10 000 people took to the streets in Cologne, it was reported on Telegram. Three weeks ago there was “next to nothing going on,” said one participant. For news outlet Spiegel, who has called the protests a “mental plague”, this was certainly not good news.
It is allegedly only “a small, radical minority” revolting against Corona measures, according to mainstream politicians and the media. The new Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) said in his government statement to the Bundestag on 15 December 2021: “We will not put up with a tiny minority of disinhibited extremists trying to impose their will on our entire society. We will counter this tiny minority of haters, who attack us all with torchlight marches, with violence and death threats, with all the means of our democratic constitutional state. Our democracy is a defensible democracy.”
It’s not a ‘tiny minority’
In effect, the chancellor had declared war on the people he described as a “tiny minority”. To get to the bottom of this question, reitschuster.de commissioned a representative survey from the opinion research institute INSA. Some 2 107 people from Germany aged 18 and over were asked the following question online or by telephone: “How do you feel about the following statement? I have sympathy for the walkers who want to use it to show their criticism of the current Corona policy.”
The result was enlightening: While the media and politicians give the impression that only a vanishingly small minority of people have sympathy for the anti-vaxx demonstrators, according to the survey this was true for 29 percent – almost one in three. Even if a majority of 55 percent said they had no understanding for the so-called “walks”, it also highlighted that 45 percent did not condemn the demonstrators.
The result also showed that Germany is divided, contrary to Chancellor Scholz’s assertions of a united front against vaccine critics.
The fact that 29 percent explicitly expressed understanding was a big surprise. All the more so since such an admission requires courage. By way of comparison, the SPD received 25,7 percent of the vote in the Bundestag elections. If one calculates the turnout based on the proportion of SPD voters among those eligible to vote (allowing no foreigners), it is 19,5 percent. Assuming there are 70 million adult inhabitants in Germany, according to the survey, around 20 million adults have sympathy for the protests – while only just under 12 million voted for the SPD in the 2021 federal election.
In this respect, Scholz’s words about the “tiny minority of disinhibited extremists” show how his grasp on reality is slipping.
The age distribution of the responses is particularly interesting. An unusually steep gradient is evident in the 60-plus age group: Respondents aged 60 and over, said that they felt no sympathy for walkers (73 percent). In no other age group do more than 50 percent express this view. Notably, most of these citizens use public media as their only source of information.
Only among AfD voters did an absolute majority have an understanding for the peaceful demonstrations (72 percent). Among the voters of the other parties, with the exception of FDP voters, a clear majority had no understanding for the protests.
The result of this poll is a slap in the face for Scholz, the big parties and the big media.
Antifa attack innocent in Leipzig
On Monday evening there were random assaults and mobbing in Leipzig against skeptics protesting Corona measures, but also against completely uninvolved passers-by. A self-proclaimed “anti-fascist action alliance” has been registering numerous counter-rallies and trying to radicalize the left spectrum of Leipzig society.
For January 10, the network Leipzig nimmt Platz announced the “end of patience” and announced 16 meetings in downtown Leipzig, to coincide with the walks of vaccination skeptics.
Instead of the expected 160 counter-demonstrators, around 300 appeared, and somehow the official restriction of ten participants per meeting is being ignored by law enforcement.
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