The federal government wants Ferda Ataman to be elected anti-discrimination commissioner – a post that deserves good staff. In the meantime, some members of the coalition and representatives of migrant organizations are also becoming aware that Ataman is unsuitable for this post.

Apparently, the coalition failed to deal with the conflicting interests of immigrants and their children in a differentiated manner. The Greens made it easy for themselves and nominated a woman who presented herself particularly loudly as the representative of all migrants.

So far, criticism of Ataman has often been limited to her “potato” statements, i.e. the blanket reduction of German citizens whose family history Ataman does not recognize immigration to as “potatoes” – a term that is aimed at origin and skin color. The criticism of those who immigrated to Germany themselves, whose families had fled persecution, war and poverty, is now becoming increasingly clear.

In an open letter, the initiative “Migrant Women for Secularity and Self-Determination” asked the Ampel government to nominate a more suitable person, because Ataman does not represent free immigrants: “Instead of praising the courage of these voices, through criticism a democratic discourse within their so-called Promoting communities and opposing vigilantism in the form of death threats Ms. Ataman taunts threatened migrant reads.”

Most recently, the Honorary President of the Federal Working Group of Immigrant Associations, Mehmet Tanriverdi, spoke about the honor killings overlooked by Ataman, Islamism and forced marriages.

I too find Ataman’s nomination problematic. As a child of Lebanese civil war refugees, I was born in Berlin-Neukölln in 1984 and then grew up in the district that is now often described as diverse and colourful.

Conflicts in and between the various migrant communities were programmed, and ultimately they were not filed at the national border upon entry. For me, that also meant growing up between clan sizes and gang culture – phenomena that are still denied by the Greens and the Left Party in Neukölln.

Ataman also branded reporting on clan criminals as “racist”, although the victims of these patriarchal, reactionary structures are first and foremost people whose families have immigrated themselves. Few people know that Neukölln’s Sonnenallee is nicknamed “the stinking street” in the Arabic community. In any case, when I was a student, my parents asked me to call all the property management companies in the city to ask about a suitable apartment somewhere else.

Later I worked in a youth center. 20 years ago I heard there how mosques, in which a medieval image of society was conveyed, advertised for primary school children. Anyone who drew attention to these places of worship was quickly called a “renegade” in Neukölln. Individuals from those communities also joined the “Islamic State”.

Today, “renegade” seems harmless, because the mosques in which the hustle and bustle is being incited have long been able to rely on supporters in politics and the public: the Muslim Brotherhood, active in Berlin, close ranks with representatives of the green milieu and are aware of the accusations of “Islamophobia”, “Islamophobia” or “Islamophobia”. to use “anti-Muslim racism”.

Ataman doesn’t think much of calling attention to discrimination against women, anti-Semitism, homophobia and racism in Germany’s growing Islamic communities. In any case, it is completely forgotten that Turkish right-wing extremists have been active in countless clubs in Germany for decades and threaten Turkish leftists, Kurds and Armenians largely undisturbed.

Ataman deleted about 12,000 of her messages on Twitter days before her nomination. I remember one tweet in particular, when Ataman in 2020 complained about Necla Kelek and Ahmad Mansour as “key witnesses of the ‘criticism of Islam’. The two are regularly threatened with death because of their criticism and sometimes need police protection. Shouldn’t an anti-discrimination expert have shown solidarity with them?