Friday, September 14, 2007

Is Switzerland a racist country?

Imagine we arrived in the Geneva train station and saw this ads immediately. The message: If you are not Swiss (not white skin), please get out of this country. We thought this must be from a minority political party just like the far right wings in France. We were wrong, this is actually from the most popular party, holding around 26% of the vote.

We all imagine that the western countries have less racist issues but this is the living proof that the "white sheeps who want to kick the black one out" is everywhere in the world.


  1. Hi Bee

    This racist issue is worldwide. We think that the western countries have less issues but I think it has been going on for a long time. Maybe they just don't react as emotionally and violently as some other countries. Every race and/or colour (and not just white-skinned) have their fair share of people who will somehow dislike others for some reason e.g. skin colour, attitude, etc.

    It just gets a bit more unsettling when we see posters like that go up everywhere. That makes those of different colour really feel out of place and a little threatened.

  2. Anonymous9:30 AM

    What does the tagline say again? (My french is horrible!)

    Anyway, I think colours are beside the point - the poster was illustrated in colours to make it easier and more catchy to understand. It basically means that if you're not part of the normal community, you might as well not come in because you can't contribute. I mean who wants black wool????

    Perhaps this can make the impact seem less harse than its first impression.

    Oh, just a note - a country can't be racist. Its government can. ^.^ (I'm just being nitpicky! LOL!)

  3. Note to i am ann .... Thank you for the clarification about the poster and the story behind it.

  4. Anonymous2:36 PM

    Mei: while "a country" may or may not be racist, "A PEOPLE" can be if it is deeply ingrained in their culture. I can point to several former Spanish colonies as excellent examples of this.

    I Am Ann: I appreciate your explanation of the poster...nevertheless, the poster itself taps into the primal zenophobia that is rampant in countries that point to crime rates to, in turn, justify their zenophobia.

    The same thing worked for Sarkozy...tapping into the primal fears and racism within his country got him in office (he won much of Le Pen's vote, as a result). Obviously, this part in France watched the French presidential campaign, and took notes.

  5. mei, the French word means "For more security". I think it wants to send the message that it would be more secured if there were no foreigners in Switzerland.