January 6, 2015
In Czech Republic, the top racist hater is a Japanese guy, for some reason.
In the Czech Republic, the face of xenophobic demagoguery is a rather curious one. It belongs to Tomio Okamura, a Tokyo-born entrepreneur turned far-right politician. Okamura’s Dawn of Direct Democracy exploded onto the scene in 2013, winning 14 seats in the country’s 200-seat Chamber of Deputies; last January, one poll suggested that Okamura was the third-most popular politician in the Czech Republic.
Okamura’s prospects have dimmed since then — undermined by graft allegations and apprehension over his leadership style — but his fiery rhetoric has not.
This week, he garnered headlines for a controversial, anti-Muslim Facebook post where he urged Czechs to safeguard the country’s “democratic way of life and to protect the heritage of our ancestors before Islam.” The lengthy post was premised on the assumption that, when it comes to immigrant Muslims at least, Czech “hospitality has its limits” and that it was incumbent on Czech citizens to “remind” Muslims that they can leave the country.
As part of his recommendations, Okamura, 42, suggested that Czechs “breed dogs and piglets as pets and walk them near their neighborhoods and mosques.” He also complained about the “naive multiculturalism” that allows the prevalence of Islamic practices, such as the ritual slaughter of animals to produce halal meat.
“Each kebab we buy is funding for another burqa,” Okamura wrote. He went on: “Keep in mind the fundamental truth that they have no tolerance for us and they are here as guests. So I have no moral obligation to be tolerant and generous to them.”
This is definitely weird. But typical for the Czech, who don’t tend to tolerate anything that isn’t a bit weird.