Thursday, July 24, 2008

Obama in Berlin

This has nothing to do with atheism, but I am going to see Obama in Berlin tonight, so ...yeah.

Obama is being criticized for providing flyers and posters about his speech in Berlin in German language.

I suspect that if he had printed them in English, he would be criticized for assuming that all Germans should understand English. Obsidian Wings states "every German under the age of 40 speaks English – most of them fluently".

I disagree with this. By no means does a majority of Germany speak English. Yes, the younger Germans have learned it in school. But I learned Spanish in school, and I can hardly say a thing in Spanish. Unless they use their English further or are very motivated, they do not retain much.

Perhaps in Berlin the percentage of Germans who speak English is higher than in the rest of Germany. But I would still argue that it is not the majority.

Obama is also being criticized for speaking in Germany.

"The sea of Germans drummed up by the Obama campaign will be used as props to tell us Americans how to vote, and the campaign isn't trying to pretend otherwise. That's breathtakingly arrogant, and par for the course for Barack Obama."

What is breathtakingly arrogant is this mindset that alot of Americans have that the rest of the world doesn't matter, and our relationships with other countries are not important. Foreign relations are vital, and Barack Obama understands that. Our relationship with European countries, Germany being the most populated of those, is very important.

Perhaps the author of that blog would rather a candidate who does not cooperate with the rest of the world. He probably enjoyed the last eight years.

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1 comment:

DB said...

That has to be quite interesting to attend. I am interested in your first hand experience of the event the news won't stop talking about. I hope you revisit this.