Is populism a threat to democracy

Populism - Danger or Revitalization for Democracy?

Populism in schools and society

Populism in schools and society

- Danger or revitalization for democracy?

Right-wing populist communication strategies, for example making allegations without providing concrete facts or attracting a high level of media and public attention in a small number of cases, are very good at populist movements and parties. This made Dr. Fisch with examples impressively clear. Anyone who wants to form a comprehensive opinion is therefore well advised to make sure which facts are actually behind the allegations. Much shortened facts and sometimes even false information are not uncommon among the populists.

In a first approach, Dr. Fisch, whether the orientation of the AfD is a revival for democracy. Alexander Gauland, who belongs to a right-wing “bourgeois” camp, in contrast to the far more radical “folkish” camp of Björn Höcke. The analysis of statements by Gauland in several programmatic speeches, however, reveals clearly anti-democratic elements and elements based on National Socialist speeches, but rhetorically veiled, probably so as not to be criminally liable. With all of these aspects, which should by no means be seen as a stimulus for a democracy, Dr. Fisch that articulating a mood in parts of the German population basically benefits a democracy. However, he had to note that other relevant parts of the population are still not represented by elections, that: voters in “precarious” milieus due to a lack of voter participation and young people and long-term immigrants due to a lack of the right to vote.

In a second run, Dr. Fisch, whether the identification of the problem and the work of the AfD in state parliaments would lead to a constructive handling of the problem. Dr. Fisch did this on the basis of statistical information on the crime rate of foreign people. He exposed the populist tendency to hold refugees and foreigners responsible for criminal acts without knowing and naming the real anomalies. On the other hand, clan crime, organized crime or the higher criminality of certain groups would be conspicuous. On the other hand, other groups, especially those with the prospect of staying, those in school, internship, training and work, are noticeable below average. General statements on "foreign crime" do not turn out to be "taboo breakers", but rather to cover up problems. Fisch also confirmed the lack of interest in problem solving through the parliamentary work of AfD members at state level, which was recently examined in a study. Disruptive actions and provocations in the plenary would be cultivated and posted in the "echo bubbles" of their supporters, but the actual, hard work in the committees would be neglected, even with the AfD's own issues.

Finally, the speaker was primarily concerned with presenting possible solutions that revolve around the crucial questions: What do we really need in politics and society? And: how do we want to live together in the future? It is important to show prospects of hope, for example schools that live diversity and exercise mutual respect and not pessimism as a means to an end. "I expect the political parties not to badmouth the concepts of other parties, but to work out better solutions!" It is good to discuss a lot of controversial issues in order to position oneself democratically. In school, too, it is important to speak honestly about interests and convictions in the student-teacher exchange and to seek orientation together. Here, teachers often have the role of first objectifying the overwhelming effect of populist slogans in order to be able to seriously discuss a topic. Dr. Fisch warned against always hanging the controversy in the classroom on the unproductive extreme positions and instead recommended selecting controversies with actionable positions for a debate.

In the lively discussion that followed, it became clear that other topics would be worth discussing in depth.