Berlin gives the middle finger to people who do not wear masks

Some countries have implemented fines for people who do not wear face masks, others have been a little more drastic and made people dig graves for victims of COVID-19.

Related story: Wear a mask or dig a grave

But in Berlin, if you do not wear a mask to protect yourself and others from the coronavirus, you get the middle finger. Yes, that’s right.

An ad encouraging people to wear masks shows an elderly woman giving the finger to people who don’t.

“A finger-wag for all those without a mask,” it read. The ad was created by the city’s tourism authority and was an appeal to the country’s “notoriously dry humor”. However, it faced backlash on social media where it was labelled as divisive. It was immediately scrapped.

Senate member Marcel Luthe said he had made a formal complaint to authorities about the ad. He said it incited hatred against all those who can’t wear a mask, including young kids and people with other health issues.

According to the BBC Lorenz Maroldt, editor-in-chief of the Der Tagesspiegel newspaper, also expressed his opposition.

“I think the ad is in a way ‘classic Berlin’ and would work out well without the dysfunctional corona-politics of the senate as a contrast to it,” he said

“The Senate seems to think that insulting people is more successful than strict, clear rules with efficient controls. They failed with that completely.”