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You Can't Say That

Against its wishes, Europe’s political class is hip-deep in immigration debates.

Oct 4, 2010, Vol. 16, No. 03 • By CHRISTOPHER CALDWELL
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Now the German debate has come to resemble the American one. The magazine Der Spiegel mentioned “the danger of an emotional and irrational debate that would give a new impetus to the rightmost fringe.” True, the right has got some impetus out of the Sarrazin affair. But the taboo that is being broken is not the one the German mainstream press thinks. Until now the debate over immigration has been platitudinous, based on moral uplift, lecturing, and exhortations to fellow feeling. Sarrazin’s book merely asks Germany’s political leadership to look at the numbers. The threat to them is not of an irrational debate but a rational one.

Christopher Caldwell is a senior editor at The Weekly Standard.

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