Not all Germans are like that like that but so many of the ones I met continue with their adoration of former Defence Secretary Karl Theodor Maria Nikolaus Johann Jacob Philipp Franz Joseph Sylvester Freiherr von und zu Guttenberg who was forced to resign after he was found out as a cheat who had deceived his way to a PhD.
Last weekend, I constantly ran into Germans who explained to me that:
1. Everybody cheats at exams.
2. It’s the professors’ fault for not having caught Guttenberg’s plagiarism.
3. It was deplorable that opposition speakers used such strong language in parliament, as they demanded Guttenberg’s dismissal.
Why do they adore that arrogant, über-Catholic aristocrat who thinks that he was born to lead? Why does the man who abused their trust not disgust them? Why do they defend the man who despite all the advantages he was born into had to steal his academic title and who instead of hiding in shame tried to brazenly deny his deeds and then told the country that they he was too busy burying German soldiers who had died in Afghanistan to deal with petty complaints about his PhD.
But above all: How can they tell their sons or daughters that they may not cheat if they are willing to accept a cheat as their leader?