This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Away with hate: a rant.

Irmela Mensah-Schramm is a criminal.

Known as Sprayer-Oma, or Graffiti Grandma, she has been defacing public buildings in the German town of Eisenach for thirty years.

Now, though, she's finally been brought to justice and given a fine of three hundred euros plus costs.

An open and shut case?


Well, sort of.

The problem is that what Ms Mensah-Schramm has been doing all these years is covering up graffiti bearing neo-Nazi messages. She does her best to do this in an artistic, or at least an attractive, way, and tries to change the message to something more positive and much less vile.

The offence for which Ms Mensah-Schramm has been punished involved changing graffiti reading NS-Zone, which stands for Nazi Zone, into a picture of hearts.

(During the refugee crisis she also changed the slogan Merkel muss weg, Merkel must go, to Merke! Hass weg! which means Remember! Away with hate! Neat, huh?)

Ms Mensah-Schramm was convicted after she was filmed by a resident of the town and reported to the police. A fund to help with an appeal has been launched online.

What will happen now I do not know, but it's important to note that Ms Mensah-Schramm has formerly received quite a lot of recognition for her work, including the award of the Federal Medal of Merit, the Gรถttingen Peace Prize and the Jochen Bock Prize for Civil Courage.

Can the authorities between them sort out this bizarre and uncomfortable situation?

Well, it's what authorities are for. 

Isn't it?

Word Not To Use Today: Nazi. This word comes from German. It is a phonetic transcription of two syllables of the former political party Nationalsozialist, which means National Socialist.

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