Following the day when 50 Muslims were slaughtered in New Zealand, the headline of Germany's most read, but from my perspective the most "low quality," newspaper Bild was not the "Massacre in New Zealand." The Bild's headline was Mesut Özil's wedding, which will happen in June. Bild was criticizing Mesut Özil because he had invited President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to his wedding. For Bild, this was more important than the murder of 50 Muslims.
If Mesut Özil was to be a famous German football player living in the U.S. or Chile and was to invite German President Frank Walter Steinmeier to his wedding, this would be very "positive" news in the German media. However, when Mesut Özil, a German national team player of Turkish descent, invites President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan this becomes a problem. Now, this is a double standard.
For years he has played football for Germany, scored goals or assisted them. In fact, it was Mesut Özil who scored the goal against the Turkish national team. In reality, Mesut Özil has no problems with Germany. But unfortunately, in Germany, some have a big issue with Mesut Özil. In truth, their problem is with us Turks and Muslims. The crime of Turkish descent Germans, who has seen Germany as a second nation to themselves and has been working for the prosperity of Germany for tens of years, is their tendency to "not to lose their roots and to be proud of it."
When a German living in a foreign country says "my roots are my pride" he is seen as a "good German," but when a Turk living in Germany says "my roots are my pride" he is seen as a "bad Turk." There is something wrong with this picture. If my elder son who has a German mother and a Turkish father, one day decides to put a large tattoo on his left arm saying "My roots are my pride," then we have to think about this.
Doesn't Germany have any other problems left to deal with? For days, the main subject in the media was Mesut Özil and Erdoğan whom he has invited to his wedding. In Germany, neo-Nazis and the PKK terrorist organization's members are attacking mosques and Turkish associations. The number of attacks and harassment cases against Muslims are increasing. Despite this, the German media is concerned with "Mesut Özil and his invitations." First, let us make clear; by coming to our wedding that was held on Nov. 25, 2018, in Istanbul, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan with his wife Emine Erdoğan honored me, my wife and all of our guests. We Turks really give great importance to our president. Seeing him with us in our happy days is a great honor. Our marriages are a part of our private lives, and we can invite whomever we want to them. For example, I invited some German reporters and the German ambassador to Turkey to my wedding. Nobody was uncomfortable with this in Turkey.
Mesut Özil is not organizing a political meeting in Germany. The day he unites his life with the person he loves is a special day for him. He can invite whomever he wants. Similar to the example of Bild newspaper, German media's certain reporters that have a problem with "Turks and Muslims and Turkey" should better know their places. With such headlines, they are serving xenophobia.
First of all, they have to have respect for the democratic elections of the citizens of the Republic of Turkey. No German or Belgian reporter has to "like" or "praise" Erdoğan. But they also have to realize that they will not be able to change the reality with the "headlines" they throw out. The Turkish nation loves and supports Erdoğan, who has their full support. German media has failed in the Mesut Özil example. We Turks give great importance to the word "fidelity." For example, we feel a "debt of fidelity" to Germany where we earn our livelihood and embraced as our "second nation," and with this mindset, when necessary we will advocate Germany and will not allow it to be "unjustly criticized." However, this "fidelity" also applies to Mesut Özil. A football player who has his signature in Germany's successes does not deserve this "infidelity" and "media lynching." What is happening to Mesut Özil is causing many Turkish Europeans living in Germany and many other European countries to lose their love, sympathy and trust to countries they are living in.
Enough is enough, leave Mesut Özil alone.
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