This general election established the migration-skeptic party Sverigedemokraterna as the major national contestant still outside our Riksdag. They claim to be the largest national movement in Sweden; many view them as nothing more than xenophobes-dressed-up. The party keeps growing and got almost 3% of the national vote this time which would have been more than enough to secure seats in the Riksdag if it hadn’t been for the 4% limit.
Sweden has been affected by globalization and migration over the recent decades and some of us will always be afraid of the unknown, different languages and cultures. In a fully functional society where there is a job market even for those who cannot speak the local language fluently newcomers can quickly get started making a living on their own. Not so in Sweden where new citizens often become isolated and passive receivers of state welfare support on a long-term or even permanent basis.
With our ailing integration policy Sverigedemokraterna can count on further growth and they may well enter our Riksdag in 2010 so the prospect is not entirely pleasant. Still, there’s no need for panic. If and when more than 4% of Swedes were to share their views they should be represented in the Riksdag and these issues need an open debate. Besides, we’ve had communists in our parliament for decades and our schools don’t seem to prioritize teaching history so what else could be expected?
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