“Angie,” as many Germans call her, faces pressing new issues. While the infamous wall between Mexico and America has yet to be constructed, the fear of immigrants around the world has led to a significant rise in nativist sentiment. Chancellor of Germany for the past twelve years, Angela Merkel has allowed refugees to immigrate into her nation, angering many German citizens. As radical terror groups such as ISIS continue to commit violent crimes, accepting immigrants from the Middle East has become an increasing source of anxiety. This fear and disapproval of Merkel’s policies have affected her popularity, making her reelection uncertain.

This past holiday season, attacks on the Christmas market in Berlin reignited fears of immigration. While violent acts of terrorism certainly garner fear as an immediate response, the fear German citizens hold should not be directed towards those arriving from the Middle East. Many of these immigrants are just as scared of terrorism as they are, and they are immigrating in order to escape domestic terror threats in their respective countries. If Germans can tolerate immigrants from many western countries, then they should not have a problem accepting people from mid-eastern countries who desperately need shelter and safety.

Merkel’s stances on immigration have lost her the support of many Germans. By the end of 2016, Merkel had only the support of 45% of Germans, a record low since 2011. Additionally, the support for the CDU—Merkel’s political party and Germany’s strongest party—has lowered by one percent, while the support of the AfD, the socialist party in Germany lobbying for a burqa ban, restrictions on dual citizenship, and speedy deportation, has risen by two percent.

Germans are becoming more worried about domestic security policies than any other issue. Despite the many fascist beliefs of the AfD, it is their strict stance on domestic security that convinces many Germans to vote for the AfD instead of the CDU. This shift towards stricter domestic security is happening all over the world, especially in Europe and in the U.S.

This wariness of immigration is not unique to Germany. In the twenty-first century we should not be facing national regression. After working for millennia to join people and bring countries together, it is senseless to alienate oneself from an entire culture due to fear, when in reality less than one percent of that culture poses a threat of violence.

With the approach of election day, September 24th, Merkel and several other politicians in her party are growing anxious as to whether she will be elected. Merkel can only do one thing: continue admitting immigrants until Germans realize that the people coming into Germany are not terrorists but humans who had to leave their homes because it wasn’t safe. Despite her evident success as chancellor over the last 11 years, many Germans are apprehensive about her ability to regulate and control immigration.

Among today’s political leaders, Merkel stands out as an admirable leader. Though Germans have supported her wholeheartedly, in our current era fear of violence has caused many to grow wary of whom they uphold. Despite her lack of support, however, Merkel is not planning on giving up any time soon, especially when people living in war zones and hostile environments depend on her.