“Intellect, reason and compassion were given to all of us” – Use them!


“Violence has always been the language of idiots.” – Speech by German satirist Oliver Kalkofe*

“That the dumbest amongst us burn down homes where the poorest amongst us shall have the chance to take a deep breath in safety, that children of foreigners are verbally abused and peed on by brainless right-wing extremists – sorry, all that has nothing to do with critique or free speech. That’s plain abnormal, repugnant, criminal and shameful. If that’s what it means to be an upright German, I gladly return my passport. But luckily, it doesn’t mean that. Such actions only mean that you are an absolute asshole. One really shouldn’t label creatures bereft of any emotions who wilfully flee from intelligence as ‘Pack’ [vermin] because that’s far too harmless and euphemistic for such obscene and degenerate impersonators of human beings and cowardly criminals hiding under the rotten mantle of pretentious patriotism. By the way, the book burning of the National Socialists was also no literary criticism, just as the stakes used to burn witches weren’t a peaceful contribution to the debate about occultism and the Ku-Klux-Clan wasn’t a friendly discussion group of concerned white citizens with jelly bag caps. Violence has always been the language of idiots. Those who can’t express their opinions verbally or at least write them down reasonably error-free due to intellectual limitations always have to shout, hit someone, or set something on fire….

Not politicians or others – we ourselves decide how our world looks like. If every single one of us doesn’t slowly begin to develop our own moral compass, and not just talk about it but actually act accordingly, then the prospects are bleak. And this compass is actually very simple: don’t do unto others what you don’t want others to do unto you, and treat others the way you like to be treated. Maybe that’s naive but it’s our only chance for improvement. …

And for all those who’ll say anyway, ‘So what? I was also never given anything for free’: yes, you were. Intellect, reason and compassion were given to all of us, at least in theory, entirely free of charge. Thus, you could use them for once, couldn’t you?”

*The above is an excerpt from a speech by German satirist, columnist, book author and actor Oliver Kalkofe, who used his excellent skills for delivering insults to comment on the reactions by “concerned citizens” and “degenerate assholes” to the refugees entering Germany.[Edit: Please note that Oliver Kalkofe is a satirist and an “equal opportunity offender”. With regards to some of the terms he used in his speech, please read  “Five things to consider before using ableist language”.]

Translation by Matthias Lehmann. Every effort has been made to translate Kalkofe’s speech verbatim. Click here to download the entire speech in German as PDF.


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