Werner Patzelt on the Immigration Crisis
The Birth of a New Blog

"Article 14: Thou Shalt Not Hold Up Error-Filled Hand-Drawn Signs"

A German named Joko Winterscheidt, who is famous for some reason I don't know, has changed his Facebook profile photo to quote the German Basic Law: "Article 14: Every person has a right to asylum."



Now, I don't want to be too hard on old Joko. He may be a perfectly good singer, or race-car driver, or stripper, or whatever he is. And yes, it's nice to help migrants.

But there are three things wrong with this picture.

First, a picture of you holding up a hand-lettered sign? That's so 2012.

Second, the right to asylum is found in Article 16a of the Basic Law (constitution), not Article 14. Article 14 deals in part with government seizures of property. Rather an unfortunate choice in this context, since German states are seizing property right now to house migrants.

Third, Article 16a doesn't say anyone has the right to asylum, it says: "Persons persecuted on political grounds shall have the right of asylum."

PROTIP: The entire text of the German constitution is available on the Internet free in dozens of languages on about 156,673 websites.