German President Rau: Political Education Over the Internet

[Berlin, GERMANY] According to the German president Johannes Rau, political
education must now also take place using new media, and above all through
the Internet, with its opportunities for interactive communication. In a
conversation with the president of the German Federal Center for Political
Education, Thomas Kr|ger, on Tuesday in Berlin, Rau said that the
appropriate focus groups must be reached in this new way. “In order to have
a living democracy, we need politically mature citizens,” emphasized Rau.

At the meeting, which was also attended by the heads of the regional centers
for political education, Rau said that some people in the new German states
have a rather reserved attitude towards political education because in the
former GDR, such education took the form of indoctrination. Rau believes it
is important that the work of the centers for political education also
reaches young people in the new states. In the new states in particular,
right-wing extremism has a lot of young followers. Anti-Semitic and
anti-foreigner crimes are being reported constantly. “We must confront such
thoughts and deeds – not only with, but rather especially with, the means of
political education,” Rau explained.

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