The Minister of the Interior of North Rhine-Westphalia wants to lock children up in prison. What sounds like a headline in a boulevard paper is reality. Reul's original statement to Westdeutscher Rundfunk sounds like this: "If more and more children and youths are building bombs or stabbing someone in the stomach (...) then you can't say that they have no responsibility for it." Reul justifies his populist and agitating statements against the youth with statistics from the Federal Criminal Police Office that speak of an alleged increase in "suspected children" of 43% compared to 2019.

That sounds like a pretty drastic increase at first, which puts Reul's words in a different light. But firstly, the BKA's figures relate to suspects under the age of 14. This means that the police themselves determine the figures here, because they decide who is a suspect and who is not. In reality, anyone who has encountered the police in our neighborhoods or at a demonstration knows what criteria the cops use to declare someone a suspect. Often it is racism, the siege of working-class neighborhoods or repression against anyone who is a thorn in the side of the government. On the other hand, suspect does not automatically mean accused or even convicted. Reul is attempting to override one of the fundamental principles of the bourgeois criminal justice system, "When in doubt, in favor of the accused", and this on behalf of children especially.

Furthermore, the figures disseminated by WDR make no distinction as to whether the acts attributed to children are the stealing of chewing gum in a supermarket or serious acts of violence. Reul's statement, however, suggests that the cases of bomb-making and stabbings by "suspected children" have risen by 43 percent. What the BKA statistics do instead is to divide the children suspected of crimes into Germans and foreigners and to come to the conclusion that there are more non-German children than German children among the children under criminal age who have committed crimes according to the police.

When asked whether Reul intends to push through his ideas as part of a Bundesrat initiative, he assured that for the time being he would only be interested in initiating a discussion on the topic. It is clear that in a few months' time, both the European elections and the state elections in Brandenburg, Thuringia and Saxony will be on the agenda. In the election campaign against the coalition government and in competition with the AfD, the Christian Democrats are trying to stand out as much as possible. This has recently manifested itself in maneuvering back and forth between the party's demo-liberal and fascist tendencies. The demand to lock up children and, in essence, to imprison migrant children is not just an election campaign, but a very disgusting expression of the fundamental crisis in which German imperialism as a whole finds itself. The bourgeois state is no longer able to get to grips with the contradictions in its society, above all the proletariat versus the bourgeoisie, and is increasingly relying solely on the stick without the carrot. In other words, it relies on the reactionarization of legislation in order to take more aggressive and brutal action against the deepest and broadest layers of the people and at the same time to serve imperialist chauvinism in order to divide the people and prevent them from standing up together for our interests in the crisis. Protect our children from the state is therefore not populism, but an acute reality.