Former German central banker Thilo Sarrazin has been touting his controversial book on integration for months. This week, he went on BBC – and managed to sound even more outrageous in English than he does in German. His advice? If you are discriminated against for wearing a headscarf, leave the country.
It was left up to Thilo Sarrazin to introduce himself at the beginning. “Hello, this is Thilo Sarrazin. I am glad to speak to you on BBC ‘Have Your Say.’ … I am the author of a book which can be named in English ‘Germany Is Doing Itself Away.'”
It is a book which has dominated Germany’s integration debate for months, and one which has generated a passionate response — both acceptance and rejection — from people across the country. The book claims, among other assertions, that Turkish immigrants in the country have detracted, rather than contributed to, the country’s prosperity. He also claims, as he said early on in the BBC program broadcast on Tuesday, that “the brightest people get the fewest babies.” Or, as the idea is formulated in his book, immigrants, because of their lower levels of education and what he claims are higher birth rates, are making Germany dumber on average.