Thomas Kutschaty takes the floor - and one is speechless.
In an interview with the WDR, the SPD parliamentary group leader in the North Rhine-Westphalian state parliament explains the upcoming tightening of the Infection Protection Act and justifies the impending curfew.
There would be nothing wrong with that as such if he didn't do it in a downright gruesome way.
"It's not our top priority," says Kutschaty, "to look into private apartments, but I can catch people on the way there."
Sure, not every volley is the beginning of a revolution and not every fantasy of omnipotence the beginning of great purges, but one should be able to expect the gift of a restrained choice of words from a lawyer like Kutschaty, who was also Minister of Justice in his state for seven years.
Not “primary goal” - so, so.
But at least one thing apparently.
What would be going on if an AfD politician had talked about wanting to "catch" people on the street?
Kutschaty was born in 1968.
Perhaps it is precisely the fact of this late birth that such thinking washes from the septic tank of the unconscious.
Between 1933 and 1945 the motto was: "The only person who still leads a private life in Germany is someone who sleeps."
Chancellor Helmut Schmidt and the ministers of his social-liberal coalition, all of whom were children of those gloomy years, would not have dreamed of abandoning the idea of an open society - despite the "German Autumn", RAF murders and computer searches.
Precisely because the generation of that time had experienced the consequences of the dictatorship first hand, the majority of them were conscious of maintaining the democratic spirit even in times of crisis.
If it only takes a year of a state of emergency today that even social democrats like Thomas Kutschaty no longer know what is legal and what is not, then this year has brought worse than a pandemic with many deaths.
It damaged the freedom of this society.
For this reason alone, the tightening of the Infection Protection Act can be viewed with skepticism, because it weakens federalism.
It, too, was intended by the fathers and mothers of the constitution as part of the separation of powers.
One can now only hope for freedom-loving, complacent Germans.
And the Federal Constitutional Court.