Berlin is not safe.

Jeremy Osborne: "I’ve never felt as unsafe in a city as I do in Berlin"

6 February 2023 by Klaus Meier 

All the versions of this article: [Deutsch] [English]


Under this title, Freitag published a report on 25 April 2022 about the opera singer Jeremy Osborne and other victims of brutal BVG ticket inspectors. Racist come-ons, broken fingers for showing your ticket too slowly and other acts of violence on buses, underground and suburban trains create a feeling of insecurity and fear on public transport for the less well-off.

We have a really good reason for rather taking a taxi in Berlin: it’s the people, stupid, brutal and occasionally racist Berliners. There are too many of them and these particularly unpleasant examples of genuine capital city culture are concentrated where most of us spend a lot of time, on buses and trains.

It’s actually a nice idea to be able to travel everywhere cheaply by bus and train, around the clock. But the pressure in the capital has been increasing exponentially for decades and in recent years. As a result, the risk of becoming the target of physical attacks has reached a level that even for some young people, let alone anyone who is not in shape for a good fight, is a good reason to switch to individual transportation.

There are three ways of doing this, which can be easily combined.

The platforms for hire cars with drivers are completely out of the question. We do not want wage dumping and the destruction of normal working conditions. That increases the pressure in the boiler. [1]

1. we can drive ourselves, with our own car or motorbike, there are short-term rental offers for cars and two-wheelers.

2. if we are not carrying groceries or equipment, a bike is a good means of transport.

3. whenever we need to get from door to door in comfort, with luggage, without looking for a parking space, without the stress of parking tickets and dealing with traffic chaos, in bad weather and before challenging appointments, it is worth taking a taxi.

All in all, it costs between 300 and 1000 euros per month, which should make it clear who gets the most out of public transport: The poor bastard who finds it expensive. Berlin is being forcibly turned into a city for the wealthy.

Federal laws stand in the way of an effective remedy, first and foremost a legal framework that leaves the fulfilment of basic needs such as food, housing, transport and clothing entirely to the market, i.e. to the control of the rich.

"Taxi for all" is therefore the slogan of the day.

Der Freitag - Jeremy Osborne: "I’ve never felt as unsafe in any city as I do in Berlin"

[1There is a lot to be said about the inhumane business practices of Uber and other platform operators and the "partner companies" that depend on them. A link to the analysis of current taxi and car hire statistics by the trade union ver.di will suffice here, which provides clear evidence of wage dumping and other legal violations.

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