GOOD
AFP News Agency / Twitter

A study out of Belgium found that smart people are much less likely to be bigoted. The same study also found that people who are bigoted are more likely to overestimate their own intelligence.

A horrifying story out of Germany is a perfect example of this truth on full display: an anti-Semite was so dumb the was unable to open a door at the temple he tried to attack.

On Wednesday, October 9, congregants gathered at a synagogue in Humboldtstrasse, Germany for a Yom Kippur service, and an anti-Semite armed with explosives and carrying a rifle attempted to barge in through the door.

Keep Reading Show less
Communities
Photo by XVla / Flickr

An ambitious scientific study conducted in Germany shows how discrimination can work on a spectrum. It also shows how anti-Muslim bigotry is affected by how much the target appears to have assimilated into mainstream society.

"It's a common argument, mainly by parties on the right, that immigrants are resistant to integrating," Nicholas Sambanis, a political scientist at the University of Pennsylvania, told the Los Angeles Times.

"They justify conflict and negative attitudes toward immigration and arguments to reduce immigration by referencing these fears that immigrants don't want to integrate," he continued.

To see whether an immigrants perceived adaptation of cultural norms affects the level of discrimination they face, Sambanis and two of his partners conducted a social experiment in 29 train stations that involved over 7,000 bystanders who unwillingly became test subjects.
Keep Reading Show less
Communities

Germany Plans to Give Dozens of Military Bases Back to Nature

The country will turn thousands of acres once reserved for training soldiers into sanctuaries reserved for protecting wildlife.

image via (cc) flickr user justinwkern

“Old soldiers,” explained acclaimed general Douglas MacArthur, during his iconic farewell speech to Congress, “never die; they just fade away.”

Keep Reading Show less
Articles

Germany’s Blind Breast Cancer Detectors

Braille readers are able to detect tumors much earlier than most doctors and women performing self-exams.

Science shows that many good ideas occur while in the shower. One morning, Frank Hoffman, a German doctor, was struck by the thought: would blind women do his job better than him?

It’s fairly well known that blind people trained to read Braille have a highly developed sense of touch, even more so than their counterparts who do not read Braille. Hoffmann hypothesized that blind and visually-impaired women might be the best candidates to carry out breast examinations on patients, which depends on searching for small irregularities in breast tissue.

Keep Reading Show less
Articles

This 500-Year-Old Religious Figure Is Playmobil’s Best Selling Toy of All Time

Playmobil’s “Little Luther” sold out in a record-breaking three days.

Image via Boing Boing / Playmobil

As popular history tells it, the Protestant Reformation began when Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-Five Thesis to the door of All Saints Church in Wittenberg, Germany. Little did Luther know that in addition to launching one of the most important movements in Christianity, he would be transformed into a children’s toy—and a record-setting one at that.

Keep Reading Show less
Articles

This German Town Wants to House Refugees in an Old Nazi Camp

Refugee agencies are concerned about the implications of putting vulnerable people on such a historically-fraught site.

The Buchenwald concentration camp (main campus). Photo by flickr user Hadar Naim.

German authorities pissed off a lot of people—as they are wont to do—when they announced plans to move about 20 asylum-seekers to the barracks of a former Nazi camp where 56,000 people died during World War II. The barracks, which were once part of the infamous Buchenwald concentration camp, formerly housed about 700 Polish slave laborers forced to work on railway repairs; since then it’s been used to accomodate diasbled veterans and as an artists’ studio, according to The Telegraph. Still, asylum-seekers are some of society’s most powerless members and are especially vulnerable to exploitation. Refugee agencies and human rights advocates fear that the history of the new accomodations is particularly potent. The Documentation Center for Nazi Forced Labour has been one of the plan’s sharpest critics.

Keep Reading Show less
Articles