By Minos Moissis,
President of the Jewish Community of Athens
July 2016, source: athjcom.gr
Pew Research Centre, a credible American research institute specializing in social research, released recently the results of its survey in some European countries. The research aims to explore the views of European citizens on minorities, diversity and national identity.
Main conclusion is that the refugee crisis of recent years has significantly affected perceptions in Europe concerning the integration of immigrants, has created a climate of fear, has intensified prejudices on the relationship between terrorism and immigrants and appears to have enhanced the trends to liaise national identity to criteria such as language, traditions and religion.
There are of course major differences from country to country recorded in the survey, including differences among age groups, education levels and political affiliation in the range left – right. It is really revealing to read the whole survey.
Conclusions regarding Greece are very sad. In almost all relevant questions related to the negative perceptions and opinions of the Greeks against the “diverse”, Greece scores either at the top of the list or too high, usually competing Hungary. Usually, Italy and Poland follow relatively close, whereas much lower score countries of Western Europe and Scandinavia. Indeed, in a combined indicator for “non-integration” of minorities used by the researchers, Greece unfortunately, scores highest at 13.72 near the absolute negative score of 16.
Therefore it is not surprising, that when it comes to inter-connection between national identity and Christian religion, more than one in two Greeks deem very important for one to be Christian in order to be a “true Greek”, while the relevant index for all other Countries is far behind.
The survey also reflects that the refugee crisis has increased the prejudices towards minorities in general, mainly of course towards Muslims. In many countries negative views for Muslims and Roma are dominant. For Jews, the survey found significantly lower rates of negative opinions with a median of 16% across all countries. Greece takes the lead here too with a percentage at 55% of negative opinions on Jews.
- Richard WIKE, Bruce STOKES, Katie SIMMONS: Europeans Fear Wave of Refugees Will Mean More Terrorism, Fewer Jobs (July 11, 2016)
- Lea SPEYER: Study: Among Europeans, Greeks Have Most Negative Attitude Towards Jews (July 13, 2016)
- Γιάννης ΚΑΡΑΜΑΓΚΑΛΗΣ: Αριθμοί: Οι Απόψεις Των Ευρωπαίων Για Τους Πρόσφυγες (Ιούλιος 2016)