A lot of criticism about the choice of Xavier Naidoo has swapped through the social networks of Twitter, Facebook and others.
Most of these partly disparaging comments had nothing to do with the new selection format, Naidoo‘s vocal and compository abilities but with his comments close to the borderline between racism, right-wing and personal opinion. Even high national politicians, the main news programmes and some NDR and ARD employees criticise Naidoo’s selection.
Claudia Roth from the Green Party calls NDR‘s choice “completely wrong”. “In times like these with right-wing formations like Pediga or AfD getting more and more attention, this selection is a step in the wrong direction and not understandable in any way”. Naidoo had recorded a song with rapper Kool Savas in which he equals pedohiles, child abusers and gay people. He recently also took part in rallies of the “Reichsbürger” formation, a group of people believing in conspiracy theories saying that Germany as a state is a lie and that the German Empire still exists or that the terrorist attacks of 9/11 are just a construction of the USA.
Many Eurovision fans are on the one side happy about a famous name and established singer representing the country but criticise on the other hand that Naidoo‘s comments close to racism and right-wing propaganda could damage Germany’s reputation as a democratic and tolerant nation.
Since the announcement of Xavier Naidoo as the German representative people even founded online petitions against his participation in the Eurovision Song Contest with already nearly 15‘000 signatories. Thomas Schreiber of NDR, responsible for the selection along with Head of Delegation Carola Conze, defends this choice saying that Naidoo has founded refugee charities and recently signed a resolution of chancellor Merkel to legalize gay marriage in Germany. He also added that Naidoo has many homosexual friends that he has collaborated with and had worked as a doorman at gay clubs. Naidoo himself also said regarding the accusations that he is sad about people not knowing him personally, writing tirades of hatred about him and that he as the son of immigrants stands for a tolerant, open-minded Germany.
What do you think? Was his election the right choice of NDR?