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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 02:59 PM
Original message
Apartheid row at Norwegian school after it segregates ethnic pupils
Source: Telegraph

Apartheid row at Norwegian school after it segregates ethnic pupils
A political row has broken out in Norway after a secondary school segregated students with ethnic backgrounds in classes away from white Norwegians.
By Richard Orange in Malm
7:33PM GMT 25 Nov 2011

Bjerke Upper Secondary School in Oslo filled one of the three general studies sets solely with pupils with immigrant parents, after many white Norwegians from last year's intake changed schools.

The controversy over the decision has highlighted the unease in Norway over how to integrate the 420,000 "non-Nordic" citizens who immigrated between 1990 and 2009, and who make up 28 per cent of Oslo's population.

"This is the first time I've heard about this, and it is totally unacceptable," Torge degaard, Oslo education commissioner, said on Friday, before pressuring the school to inform parents that the three classes would now be reorganised. The letter to parents read: "Such a division of the students is not in accordance with the requirements of the Education Act. The school regrets this error."

But Robert Wright, a Christian Democrat politician and former head of the city's schools board, struck back, arguing that the authorities had been wrong to block the move. He also said that other Oslo schools should start to segregate classes to prevent a situation of "white flight" developing.


Read more: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/norway...
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jwirr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 03:16 PM
Response to Original message
1. Interesting. Puts a different light on the shootings over there. They
are struggling with integration just as much as most countries. These issues are not going to be easy to solve.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 05:24 PM
Response to Original message
2. Judi Lynn
Judi Lynn

It have been in the media for a couple of days now, and the case in study, Bjerke Videregende Skole (or upper secondary school) have a big majority of minority students on it.. Something that different borough in Oslo do have as many of Norwegians have been leaving the area, and minorities have been the majority in parts of Oslo.. It is something that have been in the books for years - or at least as long as I have been interesting in local or national politics... I remember it was on radio - maybe 20 year ago when I was just a kid... SO the "problem" if you choose to use that word, are not of a new case..

But, as you might know, Oslo and Norway is a Small country with a Small population, we are just 4,7 million, and as Telegraph itself pointed out, to integrate 420.000 non-nordic emigrants into a population of just 4.7 million is not easy.. And we Norwegians are not easy to get to know anyway.. We are the "master" of non-communicate with someone else we are not sure about... And to be honest, we are very "tribal" in our ways too.. Anything who are not from the "tribe" is little scary and something we might keep on a distance for a while... The other way is also true, as many of the minorities are not easy to know either.. It goes both ways I guess..

And fair enough, this have not just been accepted and the principals have been told to dis-continue the thing.. I hope the school are using other means to stop the emigrating of people from one district to another, today many is indeed emigrating to one school, and all the other, of other ethical origin is emigrating to another school.. In some schools, just one or two are Norwegian, the rest is from all over the world..

It is difficult to decide what to do, as many of the emigrants from other non-scandinavian nations (specially from Asia and Africa) have not exactly been interesting, or willing to integrate themselves into the Norwegian culture.. Or at least manage to get a grasp of what been in Norway are all about.. I can understand it can be difficult to emigrate to a whole other world, and to get a grasp of everything at once.. But when people who have been here for more than 20 year, can not a single Norwegian word, then something are not correct... They are either not given the proper help, or are not willing to learn Norwegian at all...

I guess we could use some help, or guidance from the US there, as you seen to have managed to integrate all sorts of people or nations all over the world...

Diclotican
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 05:40 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Is this some kind of code phrase?
"have not exactly been interesting, or willing to integrate themselves into the Norwegian culture"

You hear this a lot from right-wingers over there, but the sentence in itself does not mean anything without specifics. I get a wiff of BS every time I hear it and I think I hear a dog whistle.
Frankly, I'm sick of hearing it.

You country decided to do business in these other countries. Immigrants will come as part of that. Get over it.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 06:23 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Ash_F
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 06:24 PM by Diclotican
Ash_F

Hey

No, it is not a "code word" for anything bad, At least it was not what I had the point to write. As in US where the Right wing really have made a habit on telling that everyone who doesn't is white, anglo-saxon and talk english perfect, are bad.. You might call BS all you want but it is some, not everyone, who have really trouble getting into how Norway works.. I have worked with a few of them, some is willing to learn, and learn fast and good.. Some have trouble "understand" how Norway is really working.. And misunderstanding is often the case when bad communication from both sides are making things worse than it maybe was before.. But then, the media in most of Europa, is far different from what is the case in US.. We doesn't have all this "hate-radio" in our airwaves.. And most European nations, also have a strict media law, some have outright "sensor" about what to say on public airwaves, as the State "own" the air, and give licenses to broadcasters. The licenses can, and have been revokes sometimes also if the publisher have acted out..

By all means, emigration is also a part of the new brave world, even tho I suspect the emigrations who travel all the way to the US, are little more willing to get a grasp of US, than some of our emigrants, who doesn't _want_ to learn Norwegian (not that I blame them, Norwegian are not an easy language to learn even when you are willing, and are getting all the help in language classes and so one) And it is not that you are just put in a house, and then you fend for yourself. You is getting all the tools necessary to get into things, and if you can not write and read, you will get education on your own level, and teachers who learn you your own language from day one..

Our country do business with the rest of the world, and we also help a lot of people to a better life by helping them into the country, and provide a lot of help to them, in the hope that we can do better for them, even tho they came from cultures that is foreign for us.. And most of the "foreigner" from Asia and Africa is not Emigrates in the form of what is best known in US for the last 250-300 year.. They are refugees from all over the place.. And some groups of refugees are not as easy to integrate as other groups of refugees I'm afraid about.. Specially in a small country like Norway.. Of course, in a country like the US, who have more than 300 mill people, is it not the same, as when you have 230-240 thousand in a population of about 4.7 million...

But, I guess you already know far better than everyone one else, that is best for Norway, and just put me on ignore as a "right wing stupid as".. Even when I try to explain for you, that not everything is that easy as you like to se the world. I guess information is something that many americans doesn't like to much about.. Specially when the information are not that easy to understand all the time..

To me it sounds more like you are the ignorant one, because you "jump" to conclusions long before you get all the fact on the table, and automatic believe, because you have heard before that right wingers are telling how tings are in US, the same is the case half the globe away from you... And I have to say I'm also little tired about ignorant people who have no clue about the rest of the world, and have the ugly habit of not even been able to pick out your own country on the map, even failing on a whole continent sometimes... That is far worse...

Diclotican
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boppers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #4
34. "We doesn't have all this "hate-radio" in our airwaves"
No, you don't need to. It's already so accepted, and so normative, that you can spew something virulently racist and xenophobic and not be aware of your actions.

You think European means something.

You think Norwegian means something.

That is racist.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:58 PM
Response to Reply #34
37. boppers
boppers

O cry my a **** river. I do not believe I'm better than the rest of the world, because I'm European. This is the continent I have grown up i, this is the culture I have grown up i, and I think I have the right to claim when others, who came from other parts of the world, have to accept the fact that they have to at least partly emulate the country they have coming too.. If you have been able to read what I have been reading on this tread, you might discover that I'm not that Xenophobic or racist as you claim I do. You might even try to understood, that I am not the worst of the worst, in fact I find many cultures both here and abroad to be interesting, specially when it came to food, I find Norway to be a far more interesting place to be now, than when I was 10 year old.. Then garlic was something of a new fashion today we eat it as part of our breakfast :P


You might also discover, if you is able to read this tread, that I try to explain why it is so difficult for foreigner to be able to fold into the community, and most of it might come from the fact that we do are not an easy population to get to know in the first place. And even tho, we have been fare worse than we are today, when we goes 30 year back in time, we was far worse to get to know, than today, when we at least have discovered that it is a large world outside of our border.. And that the world is bigger than a trip to Sweden or Denmark a couple of times a year.. In fact, we can travel to all the world in less than 27 hours time...

If this make me a Xenophobic, that I really want to demand that refugees and foreigner learn Norwegian, and to at least learn the basic how Norway works, so be it.. I could not care less what you think about it anyway.. But then again, Norway are not an emigrant society as US are, and we might not open up the "others" as easy as US do it - or how is it going with all the illegal aliens US are trying to keep out of the US the last decade or so this days????? You might try to sweep for your own door, before try to teach others how to behave when it came to forriegner...
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 11:45 PM
Response to Reply #4
51. One last comment before I leave for the night.
Diclotican I am not attacking you as a person or your country or National pride. Don't take it personal. You don't need to wall-of-text me. You will find we probably agree on a lot of things.

I am attacking this "they are not assimilating" line that you used and only that. I asked you for proof because I knew you could not provide it.

It is a lie.
It a lie that too many people spread.
It is a dangerous lie.

People should stop spreading it.

Good night(morning)
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 09:24 AM
Response to Reply #51
54.  Ash_F
Ash_F

By all means, but if you say something that is absolutely wrong, you better prepare yourself for a little wall of text from my part!. For the most part I believe we agree om most things too after all.

I don't need to "proof" anything when it came to emigration or refugees who came into Norway, as they are coming to us, not the other way around. And I will be dam sure about one thing, if anyone of "Us" had to emigrate to "them" we better assimilate as fast as human posible...

But then again, assimilate is a proses that take decades, maybe a century to make possible, I don't believe that everyone who travel to norway, either for work, or for refugee from war and horrible leadership out there should be forced to assimilate 100 percent, but they could, and should given the responsibility to try to work with the majority, than the opposite as some groups do.. And most of then who came to norway as refugees really do an amazing job, to integrate them self into the community they end up in. Some groups are more easy to integrate than others I figure too.. And all over the country, they do it with a ease I doubt many Norwegians will be able to do in other places.. But some groups of immigrants, is just not that easy to integrate into the country as others... But I hope, that in time we will be able to integrate them, on a common base to the rest of the country.. And we do have a "progress party" who are have been using the issue for as long as I can remember to wisp up support for a stricter immigration status for everyone... And Norway do have a fairly strict immigrant law as it is, even tho the progress party want it to be far stricter than it is..

I hope, that we can get to know "the others" better than we do now, in time I hope that white and blacks, and of all colors can live together in some form of respect for each others nabour, even tho they might not share the same faith, or culture.. As it is, we have to work better, all of us.. And as the OP say it, it is just ONE school, who have segregated the pupils, in a Norwegian, and other classes, and by what I know about it, it will be ended by Christmas.. And I also believe it will take a long time, before anything like that will be tried again...

Diclotican
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 12:35 PM
Response to Reply #54
59. Again you dodge the question about the racist propaganda line you used
Edited on Sat Nov-26-11 12:36 PM by Ash_F
"I don't need to "proof" anything when it came to emigration or refugees who came into Norway," I did not question this. I know your country has immigrants.

I asked for proof that the immigrants are not trying to learn your language, which is the only example of assimilation you could give after I asked you to define it.

You have not shown it. And you will not be able to find it.





Because it's a lie. Spread by racists. You seem like a good person; don't help them spread it.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #59
60.  Ash_F
Edited on Sat Nov-26-11 01:30 PM by Diclotican
Ash_F

Then you might try to learn our dam language, and se for yourself about how things are.. As I said, and would possible say it again, and again, as you either do not understand what I type, or just want to be a troll about it all.. As I have told, most of the emigrants and refugees who came to norway, try to blend in, learn the new language, and make a living for them self here, And they do it great too, or at least better than they might have been doing it when they was in their home country. As some other have wrote here on this tread, Norway, as most European nations are not emigrant country's, and the "tribal" part, is absolutely part of the fabric of a nation is been build up.. Have been this like forever, and before you claim racism, and xenophobic, you might try to learn how Europe evolved over the last 1000 year or so.

But a few groups, who are in the minority are not willing, or able to learn Norwegian, as they see us as "infidels" who they do not want to be near if they can choose it. But this little group, is well adverse in the noble game of gaming the system, to get benefits. This is no Racism on my part, it just a sad fact, that some is gaming the system, and doesn't want to conform to the country they have been welcomed into. If you want to read little, I would give you a couple of links to some of the leading news paper in Norway, so you can read for yourself, if you are willing. wwww.aftenposten.no wwww.dagbladet.no wwww.vg.no It is in Norwegian, so I guess you have to use google translate, if you want to get a grasp of the language. And even then, Google translate is far from perfect. Of the tree I have written, maybe aftenposten is the most "household" newspaper in all of norway, and also one of the best. Before they also had a serious forum, but after 22 of july they closed it down, and they are not able, or willing to make the forum up and going again, something that is sad, because it was a great forum for discussing almost everything..

I don't know if I'm a nice person or not, I try to do the right thing, and most of the time I believe I'm able to do it. Sometimes I fail, as most humans do I guess...

Diclotican
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 01:44 PM
Response to Reply #60
62. I speak two languages, my parents language was my first and English was my second
I am learning Spanish right now(I can get around) and would love to learn Norwegian someday. It sounds awesome. But that does not have anything to do with what is being argued here..


"But a few groups, who are in the minority are not willing, or able to learn Norwegian, as they see us as "infidels" who they do not want to be near if they can choose it."

OK who are they?
How many are there?
Do they really exist? I don't think so.

It's racist propaganda. If you want to do the right thing, then don't spread it.
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scarletwoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 06:49 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. You are rude. Diclotican has been on DU for many years & his insights are invaluable.
One of the reasons that Norway has such a large immigrant population is because Norway has always been generous in extending asylum to people who are fleeing oppression and wars in their home countries. It is not unreasonable to hope that in return, those who have found sanctuary there would make some attempt to integrate into Norwegian society.

When foreign people come into a country not their own and refuse to accomodate in any way to the host country's culture (such as not learning to speak the language), they are colonizing the host country, not becoming part of it.

My own Norwegian immigrant ancestors came to the U.S. and set out to fit themselves into the social fabric of this country and learn English, while at the same time preserving their unique cultural values and traditions.

To partake of the benefits afforded to you by your new home without making any reciprocal moves to fit into the larger society is not a recipe for successful immigration.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:05 PM
Response to Reply #7
9. scarletwoman
scarletwoman


I might be little rude Scarlettwoman, but Im pretty tired about pepole who accuse me of something that I am not, and have never been.. Not everyone are living in country, where hate-radio are filling the airwawes with hate message subile or not. He might try to educate himself, when it came to the world outside of US, where we still have some common sense when it came to how we make ourself at home.

And as you self pointed out, Norway have a large imigrant population, becosue we do have a generous habit on helping others, who have been prosecuted from other places.. That be from Swden, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Russia, or othervice.. And most of them integrate into the country pretty well, manage to learn the language, manage to fit into the culture as a whole, and even then, be themself... Most imigrates do that even when they came from places who are far away from Norway..

But some groups, is just difficult to try to "emulate" what is the culture and most of all the language of the country.. It is verry important to learn a langauge when you are coming to a new host country. If I had emigrated to the US at young age, I better learn english fast.. Even if I emigrated to US today, I better learn english far better than I do today.. At least try to get rid of my horrible "norwigian" accent ;)...

Diclotican
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tblue37 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:17 PM
Response to Reply #9
12. You misunderstood scarletwoman's post. She was defending you
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 07:18 PM by tblue37
against Ash-F's rude insults against you. She was NOT saying that you were being rude, but that Ash-F was being rude TO you!
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:24 PM
Response to Reply #12
15.  tblue37
tblue37

I saw it, after I had writen it and posted it.. But thank for pointing it out;

Diclotican
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awoke_in_2003 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:23 PM
Response to Reply #9
14. Scarlettwoman was calling Ash_F rude...
not you.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:24 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. awoke_in_2003
awoke_in_2003

I saw it, after I had posted it ;).. But thank you pointed it out for me

Diclotican
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scarletwoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:28 PM
Response to Reply #9
18. Dear Diclotican, it was not you I was calling "rude", it was Ash_F.
I understood exactly what you meant in your post #2. I was very irritated at the way that Ash_F replied to you.

You have always been spot on in your comments on DU, and I have always immensely appreciated your contributions here. Not least, I must confess, because I have always been in love with Norway, the homeland of my great-grandparents.

And because of my love for Norway, I have always tried to pay attention to what goes on there. So I carefully follow as much news out of Norway as I can find.

As for your Norwegian accent, you would be quite at home here in Minnesota where nearly all of us speak English with more than a little trace of long-lingering Scandinavian accents and oral cadence. When I have travelled to other regions of the U.S. my "accent" is always remarked upon - even though I know not a bit of Norsk. :)

It is a great wish of mine to someday travel to Norway and visit the places from which my forebears came.

Best wishes and appreciation always,
sw
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:47 PM
Response to Reply #18
21. scarletwoman
scarletwoman


I understood it, after I had written and posted the comment.. So sorry if I insulted you, that was not the point ;) I'm was rather annoyed by the other poster who I think was little ignorant about how things are over here..

I try to be spot on and I try also to understand things, before I write something here. As I'm not to good in the noble language of english, I try to make it short, and to the point. I'm more elaborate in my native language of Norwegian, and maybe not as spot on as in english.

Thats nice, that you try to follow news in Norway, even tho you might not be in norway, or have been in Norway all your life. All this because your great grandparents decided to leave for the US..

I might end up in Minnesota sometimes then, as I might be at home there ;).. Minnesota are also one of the most "Norwegian" states over there, as many emigrated to Minnesota often after a long trip from Norway to end up farming the land.. Many did it pretty well also over there. At least far better than they other vice might have been doing it in Norway, who on your great-grandparents time was poor and not what it was later. And even tho many emigrated to US for the rest of their life, some even emigrated back home, after a while, with a lot of history to tell, and also some money to show of for the folks home ;)

I hope you can travel to Norway some day, Norway is a great country to visit even tho I believe you Will find us to be rather expensive to live in.. But I guess by then US dollar is up again and you gan get some value for your money ;)..

I wish you good health and best of wishes yourself. And I hope you get your wishes coming true some days, so you can se our little but beautifully nation sometimes. With both the upsides and downsides ;)

Diclotican
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scarletwoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:31 PM
Response to Reply #21
33. I was not offended at all. One of my greatest regrets is that I do not know how to speak Norwegian.
Even though my grandparents could still speak it, they did not pass it down to their children, and so I did not learn it either. I wish very much that I could speak with you in your own language, instead of you having to always speak in mine. You do very well in this language that is not your own, and I am very sorry that I cannot reciprocate.

Some of my happiest memories from childhood were the big family reunions when all of us great-grandchildren and cousins and aunts and uncles would all gather together where our Norwegian ancestors first settled in Minnesota.

No one in my family got rich, but they survived and raised children and kept their pride in their heritage from the Old Country. Some of my extended family have traveled back to Norway to visit and have kept in touch with distant relatives who remained there.

I know about the history of the poverty in Norway when my great-grandparents came over here. It was no easy life here, either, but just being able to settle on their own piece of farmland was a major improvement for them. We are a family of peasants. :)

I am so glad you come to DU and post your thoughts. If I ever do travel to Norway, I will be sure to tell you that I am coming. :D

sw
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:46 PM
Response to Reply #33
36. scarletwoman
scarletwoman

Well you can always pick up on Norwegian, in community college or something - I know that in some of the northern states, where many Norwegians emigrated to, they still have classes in Norwegian, even tho most of them never will speak or write the language on a daily basics.. For some students, it is "cool" to be able to speak Norwegian, or at least, to have a grasp of what Norwegian really are, and what Norway is all about.. Even tho they might believe that Norway is still in the 1850s they have a fair grasp of what Norway are today too.. Some even learn to speak Norwegian, more or less fluent - but then they might have parents, or grand parents who speak the language good.. or they other vice have family in Norway who still have contact with them. I know a few americans, who have been in Norway, and they was learning Norwegian pretty fast, and they said also, that they wanted to teach Norwegian to their kids when they had some later in life. So I guess even tho they might not get it all right, Norwegian will be learned down the generations too ;)

I can understand that your ancestors decided not to learn you Norwegian, for many it was more important to make a living in US, and to be part of the new country, than to hold on to old habits.. In the 1950s they also had the "red scare" to be afraid of, and as the McCarthy gang did their job, many emigrants was suppressing their own heritage for the sake of been seen as "good americans" I guess.. But as you self pointed out, it is sad you do not know how to write in kind, even tho I manage to do it. But that is because I use the dictionary a lot, and also use the "check spelling" a lot, so I get the right word in the right place.

Most who emigrated to the US, was just grasping by the first couple of years. When they got the farm up and running, they could at least get a better future than they might have been able to make it, when they was in Norway. And most of them who emigrated to the US, was of farmer family.. But it was a lot of hard, brutal work to get to the point where they was able to enjoy the new life they had been able to make for them self in the US. And they often was "soften" the facts when they wrote home to their families as they wanted to tell, that they indeed had coming to the country of milk and honey..

I discovered DU many years ago, right before the Iraq war in 2003, I was lurking here for some year, before I decided to get into the fry, and get an account here. It have been a lovely place to be, and to an extent one of the few places I could go to, when GWB and his madness made myself mad and on the verge on another nervous breakdown.. And to this day, just 2 or 3 people have put me on ignore, mostly because of my shabby typing, so I guess I doesn't have to bad a record after all..

Diclotican
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entanglement Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 10:00 PM
Response to Reply #7
42. Exactly how is segregating children by ethnicity in schools supposed to aid in assimilation?
How is such a vile idea even remotely defensible?
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 10:09 PM
Response to Reply #42
44.  entanglement
entanglement

I have never defended the idea either, I think the idea was stupid when I first discovered, and i suspect most Norwegian who read it, also found it to be one of the more stupid things a head master could possible do.

Even tho I suspect the headmaster never believed it could be viral on the internet, and be a case of deep and interesting debate here on Democratic Underground.. But hey, thats DU..

Diclotican
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entanglement Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 10:57 PM
Response to Reply #44
47. Good to hear that
As a socialist, I find DU's liberal politics a bit to the right of my own and occasionally end up assuming the worst and jumping to conclusions when I shouldn't.
All over the world, the ruling class and their allies keep people busy hating each other on the basis of skin color, religion, immigration status and language while they continue to exploit everybody and enrich themselves (and it works too, sadly). Take care. :hi:
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 09:27 AM
Response to Reply #47
55. entanglement
entanglement

About that I can agree. It is always easy for the "ruling classes" to try to conquer and divide the population into "them" and "us".. And it work most of the time too, specially in bad times, when the economy are bad, it works as a charm all the time..
But, it can also backfire, so I guess, we have learned something the last 100 year or so about how the ruling classes are making their ploy..

Diclotican
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 10:17 PM
Response to Reply #7
45. People can be wrong for many years.
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 10:54 PM by Ash_F
"When foreign people come into a country not their own and refuse to accomodate in any way to the host country's culture (such as not learning to speak the language), they are colonizing the host country, not becoming part of it."

This talking point and similar ones from Diclotican are full of racist overtones. The comment is what is rude not that I'm calling the both of you out on it. Where is your data on this? Where is your proof?






Diclotican I make no apologies for the US and I am not comparing the two countries but just look at this article. The comments by the segregators are disgraceful.
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IthinkThereforeIAM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 11:03 AM
Response to Reply #7
56. Agree...

... one of my best friends is the son of Norwegian immigrants, while that in itself is no major, "proof", that Norwegians make the best friends, I am richer for knowing him and his family. Nothing like getting some Norwegian ethnic krumkakes's for the holidays, or a pie brought to your door and a sincere conversation on how things are going when tragedy befalls you. One of the greatest things I learned from my friend's mom was, "beware of the John Birch Society. ;-)
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lbrtbell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #3
40. The country's GOVERNMENT made that decision
The people of that country didn't. It takes time for people to get used to a sudden influx of newcomers, no matter what their background.

And you have to admit, after seeing the radical Muslims' virulent anti-Danish protests (with signs like "Europe is the cancer, Islam is the answer), the Norwegians' fear is understandable. While the violent people don't represent everybody (obviously), nobody wants a mob like that in their back yard.
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 11:15 PM
Response to Reply #40
49. Do you have a link for this?
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 11:17 PM by Ash_F
I tried googling the slogan but the first ten hits were super racist propaganda sites(on the anti-muslim side). Including Stormfront; my favorite. :7

I did however find this article which was interesting.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/6904622.stm

As you can see, they rightly did not get away with it. And that was years ago. One problem is the internet perpetuating these memes ad infinitum. But really four guys spouting hate speech do not represent the Muslim body of Europe any more than the Norway shooter and his supporters represents the Christian body. I see no reason to make apologies for either side of the coin.


The reason I attack the "they are not assimilating" line is because it is so dangerous. It is dangerous because it sounds so innocent. Thus it can appeal to moderates to swing them over. But it is so ambiguous and unsupported by data that is does not really mean anything.




edits for grammar
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Yo_Mama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 09:29 PM
Response to Reply #3
41. Your comment is somewhat rude and shows ignorance.
Most of the foreigners there are refugees - fully funded by the state, I might add.
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 10:50 PM
Response to Reply #41
46. That is so gracious. I was exactly right. nt
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 10:52 PM by Ash_F
Usually about half or less of Norway's immigration is asylum seekers so you are kind of right, but wrong most years and wrong overall. Most of the muslim immigrants(we are talking about just the Muslims right?) come from Pakistan, Iraq and Somalia. All countries in which Norway has tied to economically. Two of which it has been involved with in recent wars(on the side of invading).

Again, where is the proof that these people are not trying to learn the language(the only example people can come up with when asked what assimilation means)? Spewing that right wing talking point instead of facts is what is rude.
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Prometheus Bound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 06:29 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. Can we assume these kids were born in Norway?
If so, your 4th paragraph is not really relevant to this issue.
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provis99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 06:33 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. if they are born there, but still won't integrate, then yes, it is an issue.
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Prometheus Bound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:37 PM
Response to Reply #6
20. But D is talking about the first generation.
This article is about the second generation I would guess. I doubt language is an issue with the second generation, and integration shouldn't be either unless schools are segregated.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:56 PM
Response to Reply #20
22. Prometheus Bound
Prometheus Bound

It all depend of their parents.. if the parents have been active, and try to learn children the language in Norway, many if not all have a great ability to learn both their native language - and Norwegian perfect.. But some parents just doesn't want their children to learn to speak and write Norwegian before they go to school, and then they hit the wall.. Teaches have trouble learning the kids what they need to know, and the children doesn't learn what they are supposed to learn from young age.. Some manage to get true the school and pick up enough to understand it, some never manage to "crack the code" and end up never really learn the language at all..

And as one have pointed out here, in a small population like Norway with just 5 million speaking the language, it is difficult to learn a language, it is far more easy to knit together, and be inside a small community, than to embrace the new world, and to learn Norwegian properly..

And, it is maybe not easy to get to know Norwegians, as we are not the most easy to get to know in the first place.. But as one from US once said to me, if you really got to know a Norwegian, you get a friend for life, but dam you have to work hard to get there...

And that is maybe a part of the problem, that Norwegians are not easy to get to know, and therefore it might be little difficult to "break the code" about how to act around Norwegians..

Diclotican
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Lars77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:23 PM
Response to Reply #22
28. In Oslo there are plenty of 3rd 4th gen immigrants who do not identify as Norwegians
I have met many over the years. In fact, it seems somehow "uncool" to be Norwegian. They talk about Norwegians like we are stiff, boring and quiet.

I think they have a schizorenic identity problem, where they can end up directing their anger at ethnic Norwegians because we represent a culture they still do not understand, maybe they dont even have any ethic Norwegian friends. The only "Norwegian" people they run into is the teacher they dont like, the cop that caught them shoplifting, and the politicians they see talking about them on TV like they are a problem.
But i believe they also feel inferior about their own background, coming fro, disorganized and unstable countries.

In short, they might just feel like they have nothing to be proud of, wondering who they really are.


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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:22 PM
Response to Reply #6
27. Integration is a two way street. In the U.S., for example, "ghettos" of various kinds
formed because immigrants were not welcome to integrate.

When you grow up during your first few years in a ghetto of one kind or another, and then people "outside" are not very accepting of you when you start school, yes, you are happy to run home again at the end of your school day. And maybe you have some resentments of those who made you feel like a freak and an oddity.

It's a vicious cycle, but, again, a cycle created by more than one side.
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SpartanDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:08 PM
Response to Reply #2
10. There are plenty immigrants who came to America and never learned Enligh
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 07:15 PM by SpartanDem
I've heard plenty of stories about someones great-grandparent or grandparent who emigrated here from the 'old country', but and never learned English. I personally have friends of Arab descent who grandparents emigrated 20+ years ago and still don't speak English. Historically it's just not that uncommon for some in that first group to never learn their new country's langauge.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:37 PM
Response to Reply #10
19.  SpartanDem
SpartanDem

But in US it is 300.000.000+ in Norway it is just 4,7 million.. And even tho immigrants and refugees have made Norway a fare more interesting country to live in, as they often set up shops, with a lot of food we doesn't know about just 20 or 30 year ago, it have also ended up in some parts, who are less than stellar... Specially when it came to some refugees who either doesn't know how things works in Norway, or just doesn't want to learn how things work at all in Norway...

Some year ago, when I was out on the town, I was in a place, where it was a fight between a group of refuges from Somalia and some Norwegians.. And I have to say the refugees was fighting hard, even when one of the Norwegians was lying down at the ground, they beat the crap out of him, and he was hospitalized for a week (I was told later).. They even decided it was smart to fight the Police when they arrived at the scene.. It ended abruptly when the police get the upper hand, and they was arrested.. An it was the Somalians who attached the Norwegians first - after first acted as they "owned" the place and treated everyone in a way sounds like they was making a case for fighting.. A few weeks after, the refugees was indeed thrown out of the country as they had been in more than one fight the whole time they had been in Norway.. They even had to be relocated a few times when they was in a refugee shelter as they often made a hell when out on town.


I don't say that everyone should speak Norwegian fluent - but at least be able to SPEAK and WRITE Norwegian should be a bare minimum. Some, who have been here all the way since the late 1960s, have never even bothered to learn Norwegian.. And I would say that is BAD...

Diclotican
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XemaSab Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:10 PM
Response to Reply #2
11. We're better at integrating people
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 07:11 PM by XemaSab
because we're ALL immigrants. Even the native people have had to adapt to a different culture and way of life that has been as tough for them as for any true immigrant group.

My ancestors came here from Ireland, Germany, and Sweden 130 years ago, and they had a tough time when they were first here. But it's not just that, someone getting off the boat today can find people from their home country who came over 5 years ago, 10 years ago, 20 years ago, and 50 years ago. There are also people with different degrees of connection to the US and to their old country, such as people who speak almost no English and still keep the old ways and people whose families have been here for generations and who may have the family name and a few recipes and not much else.

Comparing a multi-ethnic Europe with the US is a tough comparison. On one level, the US has been a multiethnic society from prehistoric times. Even taking the narrow view, there have been different groups of Europeans here with different languages, religions, and customs for 400 years.

I hope Europe can find a way to integrate newcomers into society. :(
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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:25 PM
Response to Reply #11
29. The U.S. has npt been all that great at integrating, especially non-whites.
Edited on Fri Nov-25-11 08:40 PM by No Elephants
Look at WWII, when people of German, Japanese and Italian descent, though born here, were regarded as the enemy, or at least highly suspect.

Look at African American neighborhoods and Mexican American neighborhoods, "Chinatowns" etc.

That's how we "sent" non-whites and immigrants of various nationalities to different public schools, by confining them to certain neighnorhoods.

I went looking at real estate in San Antonio, Texas. It would take me too long to describe what the real estate agent went through to avoid showing me a home I'd seen online. The home was in a Mexican American neighborhood and I am not Mexican American.

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Nye Bevan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 11:14 PM
Response to Reply #29
48. Except for that electing a black President thing.
I wonder how many blacks are in Norway's government.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #48
53. Nye Bevan
Nye Bevan

We do have some in our government, both in Parliament, and in the government offices at a whole. Not to say in the public sector who in Norway is rather large compared to many other nations.. But off course, when 94 % of the population is "white" and just 3 % is non-white then it tend to be a small minority who wind up in government offices, or in the public sector.. But I guess, it is a work in progress, as we the last decades or two, have managed to vote in a few from Pakistan, One of the MP have been on Parliament for maybe a decade now, and have been a good spoke person for the pakistani community in Norway, and even given the "natives" a few lectures about how difficult it really are to integrate into another nation, when the natives are not easy to get to know in the first place..

But for the moment, we doesn't have a black speaker of the House (even tho they are in the executive office of the Speaker of the House) or a black Prime minister.. And I am not sure when we will have a colored King in Norway - my guess it is will be a long way before that is possible.. We might as well say it will never happened in our lifetime.. But nobody really know.. I guess our Crown Princess never really believed she should be the Crown Princess either, when she walked into the rom, where our crown prince was.. Now, they have been married for more than a decade, and have 4 or 5 children in all.. And she have made herself a stylish woman I would say. And I believe her to be a good repentant for our Royal House too.

Diclotican
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Spider Jerusalem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 01:56 AM
Response to Reply #11
52. Part of the reason for America being "better at integration" is that anyone can be an American.
"American" is a national identity but not an ethnic one; that's not the case in Europe, so much, where until fairly recently European societies have been largely ethnically homogeneous with low levels of immigration, and there are quite a lot of people who have the unfortunate idea that no matter how much someone from Somalia or Turkey or Bangladesh tries to integrate they'll never really be Norwegian, or British, or German, and neither will their descendants a hundred years from now. These attitudes are behind the rise in ethnic nationalist right-wing and anti-immigrant parties across Europe; and these are arising in response to relatively small (compared to the US) demographic shifts (for instance, Norway is 94% white Norwegian, 3% other European, and only about 2% non-European, demographically).
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Samba Donating Member (13 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:25 PM
Response to Reply #2
17. There are different degrees of 'integration'
In america we have immigrants who study english before they move here. But once here they can end up working in a group where they speak mostly their native language. You get one bi-lingual foreman who recruits from his immigrant countryman and translates from the boss to the workers. Their english often stops improving at that point as they rarely use it. Some of those who come here after 35 years of age, never master english - because they have no need to.

Similarly they can find clusters of stores that all speak their native tongue and around those shopping centers whole neighborhoods grow where someone can function with little knowledge of english.

Often their english will improve if they have young children and are exposed to the 'sesame street' type TV programs and then pre-school readers and elementary school. The first generation of kids may hear only the ancestral language at home for 2 or 3 years and have some difficulty with english the first years of school but - if they are in a well-integrated school - they will grow up bilingual. After having 12 years of english schooling and often no formal schooling in their ancestral tongue, they often prefer english because they become embarrassed that they speak the ancestral language at a childish level.

If you can de-segregate the workplace - and people have to use english every day - then they improve quite rapidly. If you get segregated neighborhoods then it can take 3 generations for integration. If the immigrants are more isolated and fully immersed in the host-culture then it takes less than one generation - but that requires friendly neighbors.

The fact that norwegian only has 5 million speakers, seems a drawback. Learning it will basically only help you in Norway and other Scandinavian countries to a degree. As compared to learning spanish, french, english, arabic with a billion speakers and useful in many places. I suspect that by not requiring/forcing immigrants to learn norwegian that you have many more potential immigrants to choose from than if you limited it to those who would commit to learning it well. Likewise if they know there are neighborhoods, shops, workplaces that aren't entirely foreign to them they are more likely to consider immigrating - but then expect much slower integration and islands of foreign culture in Norway.
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grantcart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 11:19 AM
Response to Reply #2
57. This is a long standing problem with no obvious solution

During the mass resettlement of refugees after Vietnam and the Boat People Norway played a disporportionate response in aiding the refugees and helping the resettlement. In our agency 25% of all of the doctors were Norwegian.

The problem was that the same close knit culture that could motivate a small country to make a big response would also create barriers for smooth integration for new arrivals from other languages and cultures.

The solution that they came up with at that time was that Norway would send more doctors than any other country and while they couldn't take a large number of refugees they would concentrate on families with significant health problems.

In that way Norway took fewer numbers but made a huge impact in solving the problem.

Some of the problems that Norway faces is unique because of language. Many foreigners who arrive are struggling with their second language, English, and find Norwegian daunting.

Finally Norwegians tend to be shy and less verbose so having spontaneous conversations is not as frequent as it would be in an American setting.

For all that Norway has done for refugees all I can say is;

Takk for alt
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SpartanDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 06:53 PM
Response to Original message
8. I've said the shooting were just tip of iceberg,
it's been easy for countries like Norway to portray themselves enlightened, progressive places; when for most of their history they've had a very culturally monolithic population. But now that there now increasing diversity racsim is starting rear it's ugly head. I predict in the coming years you'll see in countries like Norway who have never had deal with real diversity an erison in support for their social safety nets. Do think they'll go all US style and have almost nothing? No, but I predict there will be weaking now that is an 'other' that will be peceived as getting benefits meant for 'real Norwegians'.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 07:23 PM
Response to Reply #8
13. SpartanDem
SpartanDem

Im sorry to say, this have been the case for many years now allerady.. And it is some truth to it, not that everyone is getting a "better deal" than native norwigians - by far most is just getting by as everyone else on welfare I guess.. But some peopole is gaming the system, and it looks like many in the public sector ar either not willing, or not able to understand when pepole is gaming the system to get benefits they should not be given by law.. In the last decade or so, in many news papers, histories about refugees gaming the system, and make ten of thousands of dollars out of it. That bite hard, when yourself get 800 NKR, when I had to get to the welfare office, and even then I had to give evidence, by my bank statement,that I dosen't had any other means of making myself some money.. The lady behind the desk proberly belived I would use the 800 on drugs I suspect, even tho I used it on food...

I doubt that we wil ever get a US style of "social safty net".. We know how lucy we do have, who have a decent safty net when you need it. Even tho it is far from perfect, I know a lot of it, and I have experienced the worst of the worst, and had a break down as a resoult of it.. Was on the verge og killing myself when the whole world was hitting my head.. Thankfully I managed to get true it, and survived it all. But I would not even give my worste enemy that treatement...

But we might also discover the limits fo been nice to everyone in the world. We are a small, mostly homogen, nolotic population, and I guess we have reatch a limit for what we really can do, withouth a disussing about what to do next, when it came to emigration and refugees from diferent parts of the world.. This is something that many nations discover that it is not that easy to manage parts of the population who just dosen't want to integrate into the socity, and who are making themselfs ghettoes in larger city, where no white man is "allowed" legal or othervice.. It is a mess where I dobut we ever have been before... And i doubt that we can get a easy answer to it either.. But I strongly belive one thing, refugees and imigrants from all over the world, who deside Norway to be their home, must integrate into the socity, even tho if they keep parts of their own culture inside their own hallways, they just have to accept what is the "norm" in Norway.. It is that easy, be part of Norway, have all the benefites and duties as an norwigian, and be treated as a norwigian, regardness of the collor of your skin, or who you are from..

But, Norway is far from that ideal yet - we might never came to that either, but at least we, as norwigians can try to do it as bes as we can...

Diclotican



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DonCoquixote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:05 PM
Response to Reply #13
23. I appreciate the feedback
I guess what i worry about is that some here are making the case that in order to BE democratic, you need a homogeneous population. That is an idea that needs to die.
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Lars77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:15 PM
Response to Reply #23
25. Not democratic, but welfare state perhaps?
I think the question of how a European welfare state could survive such a rapidly changing and diversifying demographic is something we need to ask.

The answer does not have to be to completely shut down the whole thing i.e. become the United States, but dont you suppose that if you had more benefits in the U.S., wouldnt some people be even more hysterical about immigration?

I mean, if there is one thing Americans do not like, it is the feeling that someone, somewhere might just get something that they do not deserve - especially if that something comes out of the pockets of everyone else.


Personally, I fear for the future of the European welfare state, especially since it is under attack by right wingers and disaster capitalists already.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #25
31.  Lars77
Lars77

I agree. I think the welfare state, where all can get the help they need, when they need it, are under attack from many fronts. Specially from right wing disaster capitalism, and extreme violence from different groups.. Mr Breivik was just an symptom about something really getting bad in Norway, and it looks like he have his sympathizers here and there. If you go into the big discussion forums in Norway, it is clearly as day, that some, have great sympathy for the man and what he was standing for.. Even tho he was murdering 70-80 civilians, who was totally innocent..

Some politicians, at our Parliament got into the deep end couple of days ago, when he made a gaffe where he accused AUF and the labor party to play the victims and destroy all meaningfully debate about integration of refugees and immigrants.. He had to say that he was sorry about the whole incident, but the damage was made... And the party leader of that party, was making a "no-sorry" speech at the same session in Parliament, and I guess the last word are not yet been spoken about that affair.. She was by the way, pretty insulting and many was walking out of the room, because they was really angry about the whole affair.. And she proved why she might never will be a prime minister - even tho she is a good politician - but not just for a prime minister... And she have allways had the ambition to be a prime minister of Norway.. But after 22 july I think her shances is slipping away day for day..

Diclotican
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Lars77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:35 PM
Response to Reply #31
35. That was a classic progress party play
Have a hatchet man say something outrageous, then have the party leader apologize. But as peoples anger is still present, the party leader comes out again, in the next news cycle, and withdraws the apology partially by moderating the statement "there is some truth to it". At the same time, she plays the victim card "boo hoo everyone are against us".

I cannot believe they actually did it with our 9/11 though. Unbelieveable.


Then again, what can you expect from a polician who has stated that Ayn Rand is her favourite athor...
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 09:05 PM
Response to Reply #35
38. Lars77
Lars77

Yes, I know, it is classical FRP stype of behaving.. And no one do it as good as she does it.. She have been playing the "victim card" over and over again so many times, that she can it by heart...

Well, we might be happy that she was not our Prime minister at 22 of july 2011.. I doubt, serious doubt she could to it as good as our current prime minister dit it, just hours after one of the worst attack after world war two was a fact.. He had as style i serious doubt anyone else could have mustered - I doubt even Gro Harlem Brundtland would be able to muster what Jens Stoltenberg did that day.. And she was maybe the best prime minister we had, after Gherhardsen... (maybe even better than Gherhardsen as she had more style..)

Well, when you have Ayn Rand for a favorite author, then you can't exactly demand to much..

Diclotican
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #25
32.  Lars77
Lars77

I agree. I think the welfare state, where all can get the help they need, when they need it, are under attack from many fronts. Specially from right wing disaster capitalism, and extreme violence from different groups.. Mr Breivik was just an symptom about something really getting bad in Norway, and it looks like he have his sympathizers here and there. If you go into the big discussion forums in Norway, it is clearly as day, that some, have great sympathy for the man and what he was standing for.. Even tho he was murdering 70-80 civilians, who was totally innocent..

Some politicians, at our Parliament got into the deep end couple of days ago, when he made a gaffe where he accused AUF and the labor party to play the victims and destroy all meaningfully debate about integration of refugees and immigrants.. He had to say that he was sorry about the whole incident, but the damage was made... And the party leader of that party, was making a "no-sorry" speech at the same session in Parliament, and I guess the last word are not yet been spoken about that affair.. She was by the way, pretty insulting and many was walking out of the room, because they was really angry about the whole affair.. And she proved why she might never will be a prime minister - even tho she is a good politician - but not just for a prime minister... And she have allways had the ambition to be a prime minister of Norway.. But after 22 july I think her shances is slipping away day for day..

Diclotican
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:20 PM
Response to Reply #23
26. DonCoquixote
DonCoquixote

You doesn't need to be of a homogeneous population to be democratic - but it sure help when many things have to be desided... But the fact is that we can solve this, mostly because we are a small country, with a lot of resources larger country do not have. It all go down to what we want to do with our refugees, and our immigrants.. Do we accept they build their own small community where they more or less govern them self, or want we them to be part of a larger pile, a bigger community, where you can get an education, and learn the language of your ancestors - and the language where you live. 2 and 3 generations managed it well, but many do have great problems fit into what Norway is all about.. And the result is often a mess...

One of the problem, I believe, is that many who came from country's like Somalia do not know to read or write, and have a idea of what the world are, who are not acceptable when they come to Norway. Somalia have been in war with itself for more than 25-30 year now, and many refugees from Somalia is used to a level of violence, that is just not acceptable in Norway. The result is often conflicts when they doesn't fit into the community as a whole. And some young people often emulate the habit they have been learned from their more grown ups and then when that level of violence is not accepted, they get into a lot of problems.. More problems than they could have been into, if they had been given the proper help from day one - and their parents, or guardians had been around to try to educate them how Norway really works..

And many native Norwegians do a great job, to try to help them into the fold, works program language classes, both basic and secondary, and even on high education, is often been tried out, to get most of them out and into the community where they can be a part of us all.. And many do a great job integrate into the community also. But some just doesn't want, or are able to do it, and they often make a life outside of the community, in crime and violence.. Some also end up in criminal gangs, who fight over turfs or over "property".. The last couple of years, we have experienced a crime wave, where gangs more or less had had shooting wars out in the streets in bright daylight - with people shocked to look as gang members of different ethnically groups have fighting in down town Oslo.. Things that NEVER was the case if you ho 30 or 40 year back in time..

So, not everything is good, with the "newcomers" even tho most of them have been doing a great job integrate them selfs into the country, and also have been making Norway a fare more interesting place to live than it was just 30 year back in time..

Diclotican
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Lars77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:09 PM
Response to Original message
24. I have some thoughts of this subject..
First of all, people cant agree on what "integration" means. To some people it simply means that people who come agree to a fundamental set of principles, such as freedom of speech, equality etc. This is what the US does.

But others, and this applies especially to conservative Europeans, integration means assimilation. It means people abandoning their own culture and completely assimilating into the native culture of the country.


I lived in Oslo most of my life, and i have to admit that Norwegians are very conservtive in this regard, more so than we realize. You cannot compare it to the United States, which is a country that is made to accept immigrants by design.

Norway and other Scandinavian countries have never really had a system to deal with this, and while both the US and Canada have been very good at getting the "right sort" of immigrant. They have tapped into the "brain drain" from other nations, getting resourceful migrants who establish themselves easily, and on the other hand have used many seasona migrant workers for agriculture.

I think that the Scandinavian countries have been more honest by taking in a lot of poor people from north africa, people who are illiterate, extremely conservative and religious. Then we do not even make it mandatory to learn our language, and provide very poor information on what they need to do: Instead we simply include them into our welfare state which provides benefits they have never dreamed of. Its a beaurocracy that is very hard to navigate and understand for a foreigner.

In addition, the "integration debate" has been dominated by Anders Breiviks progress party, a populist "libertarian/right wing" party who have made all kinds of stupid suggestions like banning immigrants from Oslo county, putting GPS foot braces on asylum seekers etc. The result is that they have contaminated the debate to such an extent that everyone on the left freaks out every time someone makes even a reasonable suggestion. It is simply politically uncorrect to make any suggestion that puts requirements on the shoulders of the immigrants, even things like mandatory language training.

The result is that we are seeing a ghettofication of parts of Oslo. And to make matters worse, Oslo have experienced a huge rape wave where women are assaulted in parks, especially on the weekends. The police appear to be completely mismanaged, as rescent reports have shown that there are way fewer cops on duty on weekend nights than weekdays - yes im not kidding, it is insane. And yes, it is a sad fact that a vast majority of these kinds of rapes (not the "get a girl you know drunk at a party" type, but the "hide in the bushes in a dark park and assault a woman" type) are perpetrated by men of north amfrican or middle eastern origin.

Personally, i believe that if you take an uneducated man from a muslim culture, and put him in a position where he feels like he has nothing to do and no purpose and have him live in a society where white, blonde women walk freely, he might just feel he can do what they do at home. Its a fact that female reporters have been assaulted in Egypt for example.

With such a large muslim minority in Oslo and very few muslims in the rest of the country, which is largely white, rural and has very little contact with foreigners, you have a recipe for a very large and potent conflict which manifests itself in daily skepticism and mistrust. And it is fuelled by conservative muslims on the one side, and populist right wingers on the other.

So not all is hunky dory up in Scandinavia either, folks. We have some serious issues. And i also suspect that many of our older, norwegian citizens feel ownership of our welfare state, and that also fuels the skepticism against our new citizens.

With regards to this school, i am going to guess that this is a case of a school being put under pressure by hysterical parents. "White flight" is actually an issue, and people are suggesting busing to the almost all white schools in the upper class areas in the west for example.

To call it Apartheid is bullshit, however as it implies that the minority students would get worse facilities etc.

I spent 20 minutes writing this post, please dont just answer it with a silly oneliner comment :)
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Samba Donating Member (13 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 09:25 PM
Response to Reply #24
39. Separate but equal
"To call it Apartheid is bullshit, however as it implies that the minority students would get worse facilities etc."

We called this "Separate but Equal" in the U.S. It was pretty common from the 1870's till the 1950's. It pretty much died with a supreme court case in 1954 Brown vs Board of Education where they decided that even if it was attempted to make it equal, separation made for inequality. In actual fact it was almost never equal. I'm not sure what evidence or logic convinced them - but you could look it up. Being born in 1964 it now just seems obvious to me that I've learned a lot from mixed-culture classes than I'd learn from a homogeneous classroom.

To me that was the start of school bussing - moving students around to different schools to ensure 'mixing'. But probably some states started bussing before that and the other states didn't "bus" till later after they tried other things.

Imagine 2 classes - one integrated where the immigrants hear the Norwegian point of view from native norwegian students, and the norwegian students hear the points of view of the immigrant students. The other class has just immigrants or just norwegians and there is no exchange of ideas except as presented thru the instructor.

Of course parents may be concerned about their norwegian kids being polluted by foreign ideas and growing up different from their parents. The immigrant parents on the other hand have little choice - their eqyptian child is picking up russian and armenian ideas - and norwegian from the teacher - irregardless of whether they mingle with norwegian students. But they would pick up or better understand norwegian ideas if they were learning from norwegian peers rather than just the teachers.
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Diclotican Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 10:07 PM
Response to Reply #39
43. Samba
Samba

This have nothing with the idea that it is dangerous to get to know other peoples ideas, and to get to know other of a different skin color. Many young do that too, in my class in grade school, we had a fellow from Indonesia (who by the way spoke perfect Norwegian, even with an dialect) and a girl from Sri Lanka. Who I by the way had a fling for but never dared to do anything with it and so one.. But of course, they do was the minority, and for the most part I believe "my" school was rather "white" even tho we did have some from all over the world.. It is not dangerous to get to know other groups of people, and i hope, when I get my own children (it doesn't look to good, but you never know!) that I can learn my children to be color blind, and to accept people in a far better way than I do, even tho I try my best to accept everyone regardless of color or ethnically background..

But, it is also a point, that this is just one school, who was trying this out, and at the look at it, it will end pretty fast as everyone who have seen into this case, doesn't like the idea of segregating the classes.. I suspect that this will be ended before the Christmas Holiday.. And that the pupils will get a mixed class when they arrive after the holidays (after new years celebration)

This is NOT the standard in Norway by all, in most schools pupils from all forms of life and world, are mixing and get to know each other in a way that is far better than the opposite.. It is not that usually that black and white is playing together in primary school, and in grade school this days.. In many ways, things have been better than it was, when I was in grade school I would say.. In some way it haven't, it all depend of how you are looking at things I guess!

Diclotican
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Dan Donating Member (595 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 08:23 PM
Response to Reply #43
65. Very interesting...
Social and economic integration was not nor has it been an easy experience in the U.S.

Insights into our 'relative success' in achieving racial or cultural understanding is an ongoing process, one that is ongoing - all across the nation! The success or rather the election of a Black president does not equate to reaching the finish line in this experiment called 'America'.

The situation in your Country, I would not even begin to try to provide answers, but I do know, one starting point is: The background of the new citizens of your country, are they mostly rural or urban; what is their educational background; political refugees or economic refugees? There are so many questions that have to be looked at - and even more, even person has to be viewed as an individual.

I am sure that there are things you can learn from America's experiences - and things you do not want to learn. Sadly, the right wing of our country tend to do everything to promote hate and then act surprised when some act on the rhetoric that they hear, 24 X 7.

I think from my own experiences - I would suggest that unless your Country is able to help with the economic plight of your new citizens - then you are in for long term problems. I have always thought that education was the first step - if given the opportunities. The idea of a separate but equal educational system is not an answer, it is definitely a wrong step. Did that and we ended up fighting damn near a second civil war in the sixties here. I speak from the experience of heading one that headed South when everyone else was coming North; and heading North when everyone else was heading South. There were several books on this situation back in the sixties that helped put this in perspective. There is an educator that I would recommend: Jonathan Kozol, who has written several excellent books on the issues of education, social inequality, and American version of Apartheid.

It is a very complex situation... and one that requires, as you appear to be doing, each person to just try and do the right things. Plus, your cultural positions will make communications difficult for all parties, not because they are bad, but I suspect very different between the various peoples as articulated by your comments.

Good luck - but from my life's experiences, I do know this...each person can make a difference.

D



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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 01:33 PM
Response to Reply #24
61. "abandoning their own culture" needs more definition
Before I get started, this is probably a good time to remind people that these immigrants come from the side Norway politically supports in whatever violent conflict brought them seeking refuge. As was recently in the case of Iraq and Somalia. It just seems like many posters here don't realize that yet. That stated...

What exactly do these people want? For the immigrants to stop eating their native foods? Listening to their native music? Reading books from their homeland? Abandon their religion(unless it is Christianity which many ironically are)? How do they expect to regulate and enforce this? I think what they really want is for non-whites to stop existing/be deported. :eyes: But Norway as a whole won't go for that, so they start with the ambiguous "they are not assimilating" and "they don't want to learn the language lines" to win people over. I am sure these same Norwegians spend a lot time getting to know immigrants in order to know what they want and don't want. :sarcasm:

I actually agree with your mandatory language training idea. That is fair to all parties and the racists will have to think up another line. And speaking of other lines....


"They are coming to rape our women!!!@#" is the worst. :mad: What they really mean is "don't date nor even dare to reckless eye-ball OUR women".

I would type up something about the "separate but equal" line but the other poster responded to you adequately.



Anyway thanks for the insight Lars. Again, as I said to Diclotican, don't take it as a personal attack nor an attack on national pride or something. My issue is with the language of the propaganda. People should say what they mean and be able to prove their claims. You might be surprised that the US has had the very same issues in our history; with our racists using the very same lines. And it was not always with non-whites either but the Irish and Italians and other white Catholics. And before that with different protestant sects.
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Lars77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 07:51 PM
Response to Reply #61
63. Ash_F
I suspect that these people actually do want them to stop eating their native food, close down the kebab stands or whatever, and become totally Norwegian, like it was when they were young. I think most of these people are very old, and they are unable to cope with the rapid change that has come to our culture.

I agree that the "coming to rape our women" line is stupid, and unfortunately the current rape wave is being exploited to the hilt.

Not sure how i can define abandoning their own culture more, but yeah i think you are right. They think of other people like an eyesore that they want out of sight and out of mind.


It is a fact that in most European cultures nationality is tied to ethnicity, and Norway is no different.
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riderinthestorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 08:09 PM
Response to Reply #61
64. The police stats from just Oslo support Lars' point that rape is done by non-Norwegian
In fact, Oslo police stats indicate that ALL sexual assaults in the past five years have been committed by non-Norwegians.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_p__qffobdE >YouTube - ‪Oslo, Norway - ALL Sexual Assaults Involving Rape In Past 5 Years Committed By "Non-Western" Males‬‏

To tell this country that they must simply buck up and get over their racism is naive (and destructive). It doesn't help one bit to overlook the real dynamics of what's happening there. As a rape crisis counselor and one who is deeply involved in the women's movement, I can't believe your willful ignorance on this with the simplistic accusation that all Norwegians are just simply racists who just object to them furriners "eye-balling" our women.

Rape isn't something to joke about and it's a harbinger of a deeper societal ill. I am sickened by your callous disregard for the reality here.
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Ash_F Donating Member (105 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-29-11 04:00 AM
Response to Reply #64
67. No way that is true. Do you have any actual statistics instead of links to stormfronters?
Edited on Tue Nov-29-11 04:26 AM by Ash_F
The YT account you provided has been terminated. Probably due to hate speech. So I did not get to see it. But when you google the subject, you get nothing but hate sites and no reputable sources.


"I am sickened by your callous disregard for the reality here." <= Sounds like you are the one who is avoiding reality here. You have an important job, you should be well grounded in it.


PS - OH and Lars never said that.
PPS - Just thought I'd point out that it is ironic that you accuse me of not taking the subject seriously when you are so cavalier about getting facts straight yourself.
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DonCoquixote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 09:46 PM
Response to Reply #24
66. Us vs EU
Well, I have to give you a yes and a no on that. In Florida, we have a good deal of European Immigrants, many of whom are Muslim, and while they were born in places like Pakistan or Kuwait, they act more "English" than many of the Brits do. Indeed, it is funny to be in some British owned "Irish pub", overlooking some Florida tourist attraction, and see some modern English "yob" say "fuck the fucking queen!" while Africans and Arabs eating their fish and chips look horrified at the thought. My point is that even in the EU, there is a melting pot, though it is not perhaps as aggressive or deliberate as the US model.

However, there is an ugly truth that is as true in the US as it is in the EU. For a variety of reasons, some real, some bullshit, the "White, Rural" types feel threatened. They feel that their politicians have lied them into a corner, which they indeed have. However, they overlook the fact that the Elite class has been using urban dwellers, especially nonwhite urban dwellers as a scapegoat for years. There is also a sad case where Unions, which can and should be the bleeding edge of the left, tend to demonize immigrants. I grew up Puerto Rican in New Jersey, and the same Italians and Irish that were not that much higher than us on the social ladder would beat us up, often with the nodding approval of union leaders and priests. I still remember the nasty sermon one priest gave about "those people."

In the end, the solution is to offer your culture to the immigrant, and actually be willing to let the immigrant affect the culture. For example, there is a famous Swedish chef named Marcus Samuelson. He was born in Ethiopia, but is Swedish, and on shows, acts as an ambassador of Scandinavian culture. America let's its culture be shaped by immigrants, and we shape them,. which is why we have Sushi bars and Middle eat style Kebab shops on the same block. Granted, there are many Americans, most of them GOP, who feel this is awful, they want some pure white city on a hill that never was, and a confederate states that thankfully never was. But humanity can be bigger, allowing for people whose culture is not some happenstance of birth, but a choice of one's mind.
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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 08:28 PM
Response to Original message
30. The right wing anywhere. Grrr.
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Book Lover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-25-11 11:25 PM
Response to Original message
50. Diclotican and Lars77
Thank you so much for your thoughtful commentary. We in the US hear too few authentic voices from outside our country.
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riderinthestorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-26-11 12:35 PM
Response to Reply #50
58. Agreed. I just read through the entire thread and here you are, saying exactly what I felt!
I feel very privileged to have watched the dialogue here. Breivik opened a lot of eyes to the problems of assimilation in Norway and I don't pretend to have enough facts to answer the large questions facing that culture.

Sounds like Norway hasn't implemented any real plans for long term integration. Or perhaps it is the nature of the immigrants themselves (mostly illiterate religiously conservative agricultural workers) who have never considered, or won't allow, education and/or different lifestyle choices for their children. Cultures like France (and Norway) have clearly defined national identities that they are justifiably proud of, and I can't imagine how hard it must be to watch new immigrants reject it all outright, not for just the first few years but for decades - inculcating in their children that their host country's values must be shunned. Diocletian and Lars have laid out a lot to think about....

My grandfather was Norwegian and he never spoke in conversations. He was always kind and jovial but not a big conversationalist, ever. While I always just put that down to just his nature alone, Diocletian and Lars appear to believe it's a national character trait. That would also play an inhibiting factor for new neighbors!
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