Photo by Thomas Rodenbücher (xtranews.de; Flickr CC)
Every columnist needs a good death threat now and again. After all, if you can't provoke an opinionated mentalist, what are you really worth? Comments are good too. Mean-spirited online comments are like a brief hit of amyl nitrate – that frisson of anger and depression and provocation offers a moment's exhilaration. But a death threat dangling on the end of your latest rambling? That's a blogger's speedball.
Not that I would know. I've never had a death threat (or a speedball), and the worst comment I ever got was "Um, is this meant to be funny?" But, memorable as that was, in my heart of hearts I knew I couldn't really bring it to the attention of the police. Our own Amok Mama got a great one once: "And you, you deserve really a lot worse than getting a loaded gun inserted up one, or all, of your orifices and then having the trigger pulled by a spastic with epilepsy." A bit harsh, considering that the blog was about how Mario Barth was not that bad. Amok was well chuffed, as you can imagine.
Which makes it all the more unfair that Mely Kiyak, respected Berliner Zeitung and Frankfurter Rundschau journalist, got literally hundreds of death threats earlier this week just because she called Thilo Sarrazin "a lisping, stuttering, twitching human caricature."
The Bild did one of its special pretend angry faces, squawking "This journalist must apologize to Sarrazin!" and before switching to even shoutier capitals for the rhetorical "IS ANYONE ALLOWED TO INSULT SOMEONE SO INHUMANLY?" Then the nation's most popular tabloid offered a lot of background detail about Sarrazin's facial paralysis, and very little background detail about the reactions to her column on the Islamophobic forum "Politically Incorrect". Such as "Who does this Kurdish chick think she is, insulting German citizens. ... Sometimes you wish the old days back again." Or "The dirty Turkish bitch should get out of Germany, or we'll beat her to death. Get the foreign vermin out of Germany."
Jesus. Imagine what they'd've written if she'd said something mean about Thilo. In fact, if "twitching human caricature" is the worst insult Mely Kiyak could think of, it's basically a compliment. It's like she fancies him or something. Probably all the other columnists at the Frankfurter Rundschau make fun of her because she's the only one of them who hasn't yet called Thilo Sarrazin a lisping, stuttering, disabled-faced Nazi cunt.
There, I've said it. Come on! That must be worth something.