Why can’t we be friends? Most Germans don’t have any Muslim pals, new poll finds

German Families Minister Manuela Schwesig (L) and Yasemin Bagci, board member of the Sehitlik mosque Berlin, show their fellow citizens how easy it is to make friends. © Stefanie Loos
Almost two out of three non-Muslim Germans don’t have any Muslim friends, or even know anyone who practices Islam, although the younger generation is more integrated.

This new poll falls in line with results from another survey that found the same proportion agree with the far-right, anti-Muslim party AfD that there is “no place for Islam in Germany.”

READMORE: Islam does not belong in Germany, 60% agree with AfD 

YouGov’s poll conducted for Die Deutsche Presse-Agentur found 62 percent of Germans questioned don’t have a single Muslim friend. Some 2,020 people were surveyed over two days.

The study also showed a correlation between education and integration.

While 28 percent of high school graduates claimed to have a Muslim friend, the number goes up to 42 percent for those who had completed further education.

Income appears to influence tolerance levels as well.

Cornelia Schu, an expert with the German Foundations for Integration and Migration (SVR), said people with more money “generally tend to have a more positive attitude towards people with a migration background,” although there are exceptions to that rule.

Despite the fact that there are four million Muslims in Germany, when asked about their knowledge of Islam, more than half of those polled said they didn’t know much about the religion and 20 percent said they knew nothing about it.

Conversely, the Local reports 68 percent of Muslims have good or very good knowledge of their fellow Abrahamic religion, Christianity.

The lack of multicultural relationships in Germany makes for a somber read and they echo stats in the US looking at friendships between Blacks and Whites.

Three out of four White Americans lack any Black friends, according to the Washington Post citing a Public Religion Research Institute report, even though Black Americans tend to have an average of eight white, two Latino, and three mixed-race friends.

America’s segregated social circles lead to divides in understanding and feelings on issues such as the Ferguson protests following the police shooting of unarmed Black teenager Michael Brown.  

Many Whites were surprised by the protests due to a lack of understanding of the social and political landscape affecting Black communities, Pew Research revealed.

In Germany, the lack of integration between Muslims and non-Muslims has lead to far-right groups such as AfD gaining popularity.

Comedian Amy Schumer highlighted the “one Black friend” phenomenon, but wound up just sounding racist.

Chris Rock had a much funnier take about his White friends.