Thomas Venker

The eyes of evil

A few days ago I was sitting opposite a guy in a weirdly empty room in a clinic within a forest outside of Rostock. We had something to talk over. It was a matter of the future of a human being. But for this man it was not meant to be a dialogue, for him it was a monologue. Not one single eye contact was he was willing to give me within this half an hour he noted carefully in his calendar. Not one. He deliberately ignored my questions, they were only sabotaging his script.
A thing not that easy normally as I am a person who tries to maintain eye contact with others. Isn´t that how humans should behave in conversation? Well, you can say a lot with words, but the eyes tell the truth.

That said I absolutely hate it when people try to avoid conflicts by avoiding the visual and spoken dialogue. This is the shy folks strategy, but as soon as there is the aura of arrogance and misunderstood power in the room, I kinda lose it. At the end I was willing to drape the eyes of him the way Dario Argento shows us in „Opera“:

A backyard in Berlin Mitte. Here, where once after the fall of the Berlin wall a pirate radio was airing the sound of freedom (in all its variety from Doc Schoko to Jungle) the new Berlin subculture was taking root, flat by flat. Suddenly, without so much as a business plan, sad German reality moved in. Instead of open and interested communication between the different parts of the house, there were closed curtains and suspicious looks.

I am not really able to tell when all of this started, it was a slow process of moving outs and ins – and suddenly one gets a warning of the landlord by postage and mentioning too loud social happenings with English and French speaking visitors. What happened to the free spirit of the 90s and 00s?

Another place, again an East German city. In Clausnitz some truly brave people refused to hide from the german aggressors who attacked their bus. They not only withstood them, they reacted in an understandable way by showing them the middle finger and the „Eff-Off!“ sign. And for that reason the German police assigns them the fault for the escalation of the situation:
The logic of the state, is as-ever a thing to behold.

Face down those evil eyes. Not so easy but we have to stand up and look back so long until we break their stare. One thing is certain: by looking away things will only get worse, something we as Germans should have learnt from our own past.


Translation: Alex Mayor

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