I’m Wolfgang, a German economist and professor married to a Kenyan doctor. We both live in Germany, in a tiny small town with our two little angels. Our marriage hasn’t been easy, not the usual issues you have as a couple but issues inflicted by strangers who’ve decided to make our life hell.
We have received two threat letters so far, warning us that we would be killed for “dirtying” the German blood. This scares me a lot. We reported the issue to the police, but no measures were taken with the police citing that first, such letters usually are sent by maniacs and we shouldn’t worry much about them, secondly, that we are not prominent enough to warrant police coming to protect our home. That not withstanding, they requested that I keep the story as quiet as possible and only share it with close relatives to avoid a media frenzy. They did advice though that I should always make sure that I was home by dark and always keep an eye on my rear view mirror, to spot anything weird.
I’ve read of stories of some Nazi groups killing foreigners and this truly scares me. The intolerance in some places is just unbelievable.
At the Kindergarten for example, all the parents there and the teachers are always very friendly to us; but recently my daughter was told in class by one of the children that she was black and dirty and she should return to where she came from. Where does a small child get such an idea?
Once we were at the supermarket, and one of the cashiers on seeing my wife, shook her head and simply said “poor Germany”. My wife saw one of our neighbours do a Hitler salute once. When we reported it, the police said we were being too sensitive. They included that maybe my wife had misunderstood the gestures made. Another time a man who almost ran over my wife and daughter, stopped when I came between the car and my wife only to call us monkey asses as he sped off. When we reported it, the police said the charges we had made were too grave for such a petty offence and that there was no social duty to get such a person off the streets.
The prejudices are too much. Like anyone who notices my wife is black, they assume she was a prostitute when we met when in reality we met at the University on my way to class. I wanted my wife and kids to live in Germany, I love Germany as my homeland and it does offer better medical care and job opportunities. Of course, I wasn’t naive and I did make it clear to my wife that she might be insulted for her skin colour but I never imagined it would escalate to a point of receiving threat letters.
This is not to say that everyone we meet is against us, but those are the majority. We did meet a lady once at the supermarket who bought my children a stuffed animal each and she simply said it was a sign to show that we are welcome. But such gestures are rare and when that happened, I almost cried.
I hope this is all a nightmare and I’ll eventually wake up from it, but for now. My fear is what drives me.
Such stories are not isolated, remember: