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November 30th, 2009


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01:32 pm - Political news from a small country
Yesterday the Swiss voted. There is nothing surprising about this, the Swiss do it couple of months (think California ballot initiatives on speed) but this time they voted down minarets.

Amongst the raft of issues was a one line change to the Swiss constitution outlawing the building of minarets. The Swiss People's Party (Schweizerische Volkspartei for a bit of pseudo-Nazi frisson) chief wedge issue has been and continues to be furriners, especially Islamic furriners.

The SVP has tested the limits of propriety and legality in their campaign advertising. They have claimed that that Switzerland will become a majority Islamic country by 2025. On referenda on immigration policy the SVP made campaign posters showing hands of a decidedly non-pinkish color reaching for Swiss passports.

Aside: I was going to say non-Caucasian hands above but the SVP is not too fond even of caucasians if they come from the Balkans.

This time the SVP latched onto the issue was minarets. Switzerland is well known for the looming minarets of mosques that dominate the small villages nestled in picturesque Alpine valleys. And the SVP had had enough.

In spite of Switzerland having only four mosques with minarets (none of which broadcast calls to prayer, that would be UnSwiss, nevermind the blasted church bells marking Sunday mass at 6:30am in the quaint little village where I lived for years. It is all right now, we moved to another quaint village, thanks) the Swiss voted to ban the construction of minarets 57.5% to 42.5%.

It's not the end of tolerance in Switzerland (though Heaven help you if you jaywalk on the other side of the Rostigraben), it's probably just the opening round in several more rounds of referenda and court rulings.

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[User Picture]
From:notgruntled
Date:November 30th, 2009 02:06 pm (UTC)
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I was going to say non-Caucasian hands above but the SVP is not too fond even of caucasians if they come from the Balkans.

Nor, I would imagine, from the Caucasus.

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