In Germany, a fierce discussion has erupted about the action #allesdichtmachen by more than fifty well-known actors and actresses. They criticize the corona measures of the German government in satirical videos on social media. The action is acclaimed, but also evokes a lot of resistance, among others among healthcare staff and journalists. Meanwhile, several participants have already withdrawn.
The videos draw the corona measures, the fear of the virus and the reporting of the crisis into the absurd and, according to critics, ridicule. Babylon Berlin actor Volker Bruch calls on the government to frighten the population, because after a year and a half he threatens to lose fear of corona, he says.
Actress Heike Makatsch (also seen in Love Actually) doesn‘t open the door, she says in a video. Also not for DHL or the pizza courier, because “there are egoists out there who just want to open everything open”.
A well-known Tatort actor, Richy Müller, appears in his video with two plastic bags. “In this plastic bag I breathe in and out in this one again. That way, I never get in contact with the outside air and protect myself and others.”
“Tasteless, ignorant and numb”
According to the creators, the campaign is intended to ironically open a debate and “show that, in addition to those who are sick with corona, there are also victims of coronation policy”. But many Germans don’t see the humour of it. In numerous comments, the conclusion is that the action is wrong and the actors are blaming for being tasteless, ignorant and numb.
Carola Holzner, a doctor from Essen who blogs under the name Doc Caro, started a counteraction under the hashtag #allemalneschichtmachen (in other words: walk along a service). Holzner says in a video on Facebook: “You have crossed a line, and you have crossed the pain threshold of everyone who has been working for a year.”
Applause from right-populists
Applause is given to actors and actresses from the corner of the right-populist party Alternative für Deutschland and the Querdenk movement, which has many corona deniers and conspiracy thinkers among the supporters. They call the action brave and hope that it “opens a lot of people‘s eyes”.
According to critics, actors join the frame of the AfD and anti- coronavirus monstrants that only one opinion is allowed and critics of policy do not speak. Journalists also openly express their irritation. Anchor of the ZDF news Marietta Slomka is cynically reacting that critical voices in talk shows, newspapers and news channels have been heard for a year, “but that seems to have escaped 53 actors in one way or another”.
Call for dismissal
A member of the public broadcaster WDR’s broadcasting board, Garrelt Duin, even went so far that he felt that actors who took part in the action should be dismissed because they “made themselves impossible as signboards of the public broadcaster,” he wrote on Twitter. Duin retracted his comment within a few hours, after a storm of criticism from both the right and the left.
The influential boulevard newspaper Bild wonders whether criticism should be made in Germany at all. Also the leader of the CDU governing party, Armin Laschet, is taking up for the actors: “I can‘t believe that call to dismiss actors. You don’t have to agree, but you need to be able to give this opinion, including in the public service broadcaster.”
Only 34 videos online
All the fuss is also the actors and actresses did not sit in the cold clothes. Of the originally 54 videos, only 34 were online yesterday. A number of actors and actresses have openly distanced themselves from the action. Tatort actor Müller also regrets his video, saying to the N-TV channel: “I never wanted to hurt or ridicule people. I‘ve been naive.”
Tatort-actor Jan Josef Liefers defends the action, although according to him it “had an adverse effect”. He rejects all sympathy for the right. “I stand on the side of those who have been struck between shore and ship, who have been frightened and insecure, intimidated and silenced.”
A statement has also been published on the website of the action stating that the group does not want to be pushed into a right corner, that the AfD stands for everything they are against, but also that the removal of the videos should not be interpreted as criticism of the action, but that” some just didn’t have strength before this shitstorm or want to protect their families.”