Forward Note: I wrote this a couple of weeks ago and had planned to post this conversation this week, although I’ve been running a bit behind. As fate would have it, not only did current events preempt me once more but also have my own experiences illuminated a broader picture.
Calmly awaiting the beginning of the lecture, the young exchange student here on a swimming scholarship struck up a conversation as she normally does. Friendly enough, but as with most people in a professional setting, I don’t care much for individual opinion especially from those with little clue about the real human nature, the nature not usually told by social academics, the nature of warring tribes, not the phony Marxist Conflict Theory stuff undergrads are bombarded with elsewhere.
” I was talking with my mother the other day…” she began, as most impersonal conversations would.
“I was telling her about what you said last week, about sabotage being a common terrorism that goes unnoticed, small scale warfare, and all of that.”
“Oh, yeah. What’d she say?” I asked out of curiosity, not really caring that much.
“She told me about the car burnings…car burnings everywhere, all over Sweden, every night.”
“Yeah, it’d be reasonable to label that sabotage.” Replying as dryly as possible.
“Well, she was telling me…” painfully trying to mince words, “…our neighbors who moved in six months ago in Goteborg…the Police took them! She told me that Ahad, the halal market owner, told her that he heard a rumor…that they were suspecting our neighbor of burning cars, and that they were going to deport him!” with a rising anxiety in her voice as if to signal a certain Stockholm Syndrome. The irony.
“Well, that’s one response.”
“Before I left, they had moved in two doors down. I never saw his wife outside but he was always very friendly, he told me he fled killings in Pakistan, how horrible it was there. Why would the Swedish government want to return him to that? Him and his wife? Why do they not believe him?”
“I dunno, I’m not a Swede. Why should they believe him anyway, especially if he’s indeed guilty of burning your cars?” Trying painfully not to give the answer I wanted to give. Let’s let her come to the answer.
“But I don’t think he did…he’s a nice man?”
“You don’t think? Or you don’t know. Quite the difference.” I calmly stated, with as cold a stare as I could muster. “Obviously people would never lie to you.”
She looked at me for a minute, dumbfounded. The other students were now paying careful attention to our dialogue.
“You’ve been rather vocal concerning feminism in this class- you stated you never saw his wife. Ever wonder why?”
“Do me a favor, think on that, and look up Sweden’s crime database, the bra.se, and reference the sexual assault rates. Note the data for 2016 has not yet been published. Pay attention to the 70 or so percent of rapes being committed by strangers. That’s not the norm anywhere else as you pointed out in your own paper on campus sexual assault; we can safely label that a statistically significant indicator. Compare to the years of the migrant settlements. Now we have correlation and time order, two of the things required to establish causation. Civilizations can be sabotaged too, you know. And remember, numbers don’t lie, people do.”
She was silent and turned red while she gathered her things. Standing up, she quietly exited the classroom. The truth is hard to handle for some.
“…anyone ever heard of AQ Khan?” I asked, met with the normal blank stares…