I feel 100% Iraqi - my food, my culture and my language. I speak Danish well but I can’t feel words in Danish, and there is no way I can be romantic in Danish. However, my duty to the society makes me 100% Danish.
I am tired of the way foreigners are portrayed in the media in Denmark. It is often due to just a few troublemakers. I think that parents should be held accountable for their children’s actions. If they make trouble, the parents should get involved.
Our culture says that boys should be strong and brave. It is their responsibility to protect themselves and their family, but here in Denmark the police are the ones who protect us.
I believe that the parents must tell their children that Danish culture is different. I think that foreign women who are working have a positive impact on their families and on society. My wife and I have raised our children to take responsibility for their own actions. They are in control of their lives. In our family we have both muslims and atheists, despite the pressure they encounter in our Iraqi community. Every Tuesday I play chess in Hvidovre Chess Club. I sit for four hours without saying a word, and I concentrate on chess. I have a wife and four sons, so I enjoy the silence. If I lose, I can’t sleep at night. I learned to play chess when I was still a child, before Iraq changed, and before I was forced to spend 11 years of my life, all of my youth in fact, in the military. For me, chess is a far more constructive form of conflict.
60 years / male / in a relationship / children / educated as engineer / bus driver / Valby / from Iraq / came to Denmark in 2000 / residence permit same year