Young poet threatened after TV appearance

18-year-old Yahya Hassan has received death threats after he criticised the Muslim community in the media this week

An infectious performance (photo: Merlijn Hoek)
October 10th, 2013 8:08 pm| by admin
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After his appearance in the DR2 news programme Deadline this week in which he criticised Muslim parents, Yahya Hassan, an 18-year old poet of Palestinian descent, has received more death threats than any other guest in the show's history.

"He is going to fucking die! That's all there's to it," one commenter immediately wrote on Deadline's Facebook page, while another wants Hassan to "shoot himself before someone else does it". A third wrote: "I wish I had a bazooka, then he would have been gone a long time ago."

Deadline has deleted all the threatening comments and Hassan has reported the persons behind the comments to the police.

"Muslims say they are going to find me. That they are coming after me. But they can all come and get me if they want. I don't give a shit about these morons," Hassan told Jyllands-Posten newspaper.

Never so aggressive
Deadline producer Heidi Robdrup said she couldn't think of any time in the show's history when the reactions were so aggressive.

"I don't recall that we have ever experienced such an angry debate after an episode," Robdrup told DR Nyheder. "Even though there are also many positive comments, most of the comments are highly critical. They especially accuse Hassan of lacking respect for his parents and his religion."

Betrayal by immigrant parents
Hassan, who is studying at the writer's school Forfatterskolen, is publishing his eponymous collection of poems this month. He grew up in Aarhus and was removed from his home at the age of 13, after several years as a juvenile criminal.

Last weekend, he gained national attention after he, in an interview with Politiken newspaper, blamed Muslim parents, and not the state, for the fact that so many immigrants of his generation have become criminals. The article has already become Politiken's most shared article on social media this year, having been shared more than 85,000 times.

"As soon as our parents landed in the airport, it was as if they gave up their role as parents," he told Politiken. "Then we could watch our fathers passively rot on the couch with the remote in their hands, living off state benefits, accompanied by a disillusioned mother who never put her foot down. Those of us who dropped out of school, who became criminals and bums, we weren't let down by the system, but by our parents. We are the orphaned generation." 

While Hassan's first book was originally meant to be printed in 400 copies, his publisher Gyldendal announced that given the recent attention the young poet has gained, they are going to publish 1,600 copies of the first edition.

An infectious performance (photo: Merlijn Hoek)
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