Edward Snowden on the rise of authoritarianism during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The fact that we tend to orient ourselves more towards our own group during the crisis can have many positive consequences, “such as people putting on a mask or showing a high level of acceptance for contact restrictions,” says Fritsche.

But the community orientation also has a “dark side”: authoritarian thinking. This leads people to follow the perceived rules and norms to a greater extent in their group and take stronger action against those who break them.

“It’s called authoritarian aggression,” says Fritsche. This is directed not only against people who do not adhere to the coronavirus measures, but also against people who generally have different political or religious affiliations.