The results of the German federal election are now in. And they’re not pretty. Largely because, for some, they point to a Nazi rebirth in the country.
A step forward for the far right?
But the resurgence of the AfD itself is full of contradictions. Despite its penchant for homophobia, for example, the party has cultivated a gay following. It is jointly led by Alice Weidel – a lesbian (with a Sri Lanka-born partner) who has been accused of racism.
She shares the pilot seat with a former member of Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU), Alexander Gauland.
The AfD mourned the death of the traditional 2.4 nuclear family after the German parliament legalised same-sex marriage in June this year. And after being defeated in its fight to stop gay marriage in Germany, the AfD’s website stated:
In deep sorrow, we say good-bye to the German family, whose constitutional protection was buried by the ‘representatives of the people’ at the German parliament.
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But in an effort to demonstrate the AfD is not homophobic, Weidel recently announced:
I am homosexual… Nobody seems to have got up and walked out. Which is of course a surprise because the AfD is a homophobic party. I read this everyday.
And she has made the headlines after a former colleague leaked an email she allegedly sent in 2013. It contained racist remarks about ‘genetic unity‘ – apparently reflecting the xenophobic tendencies of her party. But Weidel has denied sending the email, saying it was a “smear campaign” launched against her.
Anchoring herself as a homosexual role model, Weidel is at the helm of an anti-immigration billboard campaign that has precision-targeted [German] the gay community in the lead-up to this election.
Berlin Mayor Michael Müller brandished this “disgusting” after it shunned [German] “Muslim immigrants” for their so-called ‘intolerance’ of same-sex love. The poster, featuring a gay male couple, read:
My partner and I don’t want to meet Muslim immigrants who believe that our love is a deadly sin.
The AfD’s rise also led Müller to warn of a Nazi rebirth. He said it “would be seen around the world as a sign of the return of the right wing and the Nazis in Germany”.
Weidel’s appearance at the helm of the AfD is not the first time that the gay community has been hijacked to promote right-wing politics. Nor is it the first time that the anti-fascist LGBTQ+ camp has risen in response – as shown in places like Sweden and, more recently, Bristol.
But Germany’s election results are worrying. And they could indeed confirm Müller’s fears of a Nazi rebirth in the country.
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Featured image via Wikimedia
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