Thursday, April 23, 2015

If it’s Thursday, I must be in Kiel

After a pleasant evening in Hamburg, I arose Thursday morning to another nice,but colder, day. Since the trains were still on strike, the American consulate provided a driver to take me to Kiel which is a little over an hour from Hamburg. Riding in the consulate’s sedan made me feel a bit like a celebrity, it’s the first time I've been driven around during one of my trips to Europe.
At the University of Kiel

At the University of Kiel I was hosted by the Center for North American Studies and the Amerika-Gesellschaft Schleswig-Holstein. The audience of ~50 people was mostly made up of student,s several of whom are studying immigration policy issues in the U.S. I spoke about the development of antidiscrimination policy in both the US and Europe, and the need for integrating or mainstreaming the policies into corporate cultures. We also discussed the current refugee crisis in the Mediterranean, which I argued is more humanitarian crisis than immigration problem. Another topic was the issue of police killings of unarmed black people in places like Ferguson. I pointed out that some of the issues are systemic, but are also due to institutional structures that allow bad police officers to stay on, or be rehired even after they have been found wanting. The situation is complicated, but I noted that the Justice Department has often stepped in to try and force changes when the systemic issues are clear. There is much more work to do, and racial profiling is also an issue in Europe, I'm particularly aware of it in France.

I returned to Hamburg to enjoy some time in the central district, here are some pictures from my walk:


Some views of the Rathaus (city hall)

Monument to WW1 - 40,000 from Hamburg died...

 TV tower at sunset

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