After an entire weekend full of protests in Germany, politicians are worried that the demonstrations are actually used as a means of spreading ideas that are on the far-right of the spectrum and anti-vaccine ideas. Additionally, attacks against police and journalists have been increasing.
Politicians from all parties have said on Monday that the increasing amount of protests against the lockdown could prove to become grounds for radicalization movements, including those on the far-right of the political spectrum. Thousands of people have gathered in various cities across all of Germany over the weekend to ask for an end of the social distancing measures taken to slow down the spread of COVID-19.
According to Saskia Eskens, the leader of the SPD (Social Democrats), who are the junior partners in the ruling coalition with Germany’s Christian Democrats, led by Chancellor Angela Merkel, simply looking away and not saying anything does not help to solve the situation.
In an interview with the Funke Mediengruppe newspaper, Eskens declared that the moment has come to fight conspiracy theorists and groups of extremists that are trying to gain leverage, using the quarantine cabin fever as an opportunity. She has said that people must now show that they are inexpugnable democrats. Another possibility that has been mentioned is the one that radical ideologies are being promoted during these protests.
According to a declaration that Paul Ziemiak, the General Secretary of the CDU, made to the Augsburger Allgemeine daily, the government will not allow extremist groups to use the current crisis to their advantage in spreading anti-democratic messages. He said that concerns are taken seriously, but those that encourage the worries of the citizens via conspiracy theories must be acted against regularly.
Finally, on this subject, Konstantin von Notz, leader of the Green party, has said that people’s right to demonstration has to be upheld, but the message that political leaders are just puppets of George Soros and Bill Gates must be encouraged.