One year later, it is important to grieve and remember the dead:
Said Nesar Hashemi
Vili Viorel Păun
My thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their loved ones, and their community.
One year later, it is also important to support the victims of the attack and their relatives, in spirit, in action and in financial support. The Initiative 19 Februar is a group formed in the wake of the attack, focused on giving the community a space to heal and interact, and to also work towards grief and remembrance into change. There are a series of demonstrations, protests and vigils all over Germany, you can find a list here. We can also support the Bildungsinitiative Ferhat Unvar, an initiative founded by Serpil Temiz Unvar, the mother of one of the victims, to improve antiracist education and to empower those affected by racism.
One year later, the peculiarities of the pandemic and living in rural southern Germany mean I won’t be able to physically join one of the demonstrations today, but have decided to donate the money I would’ve spent doing so to Initiative 19 Februar and Bildungsinitiative Ferhat Unvar.
One year later, it’s also clear that Hanau was not an isolated incident. There are still a lot of questions regarding what happened that night, about the structures supporting the perpetrator, about the investigation of the attack and the political and social structures that enable racist terrorism, including the law and order language that turns into shisha bars into criminal hopspots into targets for racists. That also includes investigating our white privilege.
The peculiarities of living in rural southern Germany during the pandemic mean that It also means that events that would definitely be out of reach from Lindau are now online: This weekend, there is also “Wir Sind Hier” (We Are Here), an online literary festival for cultural diversity organized by the Literaturhaus Frankfurt, centering authors and intellectuals who write from a postmigrant perspective. The first panel yesterday with Ferda Ataman, Mohamed Amjahid, Seda Başay-Yıldız and Idil Baydar was already incredibly insightful, and I’m looking forward to the next readings and discussions.
(The racist terrorist also killed his mother and then himself. I did not think it would be appropriate to list (and grieve) her in the same context.)