Viva La France...and Racism!?

When in doubt, blame the black guy!

Or this seems to be the route some French folks have resorted to in light of the country's sour loss at the World Cup this week. All racial hell has broken out. I was listening to the BBC this morning when I heard a French dude blame the loss on team members who are "millionaire thugs from the Paris suburbs."

From New York Times:

The philosopher Alain Finkielkraut, who has often criticized the failures of French assimilation, compared the players to youths rioting in the banlieues, France’s suburban ghettos. “We now have proof that the French team is not a team at all, but a gang of hooligans that knows only the morals of the mafia,” he said in a radio interview.

While most politicians have talked carefully of values and patriotism, rather than immigration and race, some legislators blasted the players as “scum,” “little trouble-makers” and “guys with chickpeas in their heads instead of a brain,” according to various news reports.

Fadela Amara, the junior minister for the racially-charged suburbs who was born to Algerian parents, warned on Tuesday that the reaction to the team’s loss had become racially charged.

“There is a tendency to ethnicize what has happened,” she told a gathering of President Nicolas Sarkozy’s governing party, according to reports in the French news media. “Everyone condemns the lower-class neighborhoods. People doubt that those of immigrant backgrounds are capable of respecting the nation.”

You mean to tell that France isn't post-racial? Oh, the horror! Read on.

...France is confused about its identity and uncomfortable with the growing numbers and sometimes the attitudes of its poorer, darker immigrants and their children, he said. “What is certain is that we are going through in France questions of disobedience, of incivility, of loss of bearings, and this group of irritated young kids is an excessive reflection of those questions.”

In 1998 the successful French team that won the World Cup was widely praised for its multiethnic nature — black, white and Arab, and seen as a symbol of a more diverse nation. But today, Mr. Tétart said, the talk is the opposite...

...On Tuesday, Mr. Le Pen said that “the myth of anti-racism is a sacred myth in France.” He added, with no apparent irony, that he hated politicians who turn the national soccer team into “a flag of anti-racism instead of sport.”

Just in the last few months a French government official was convicted for making racial remarks about Arabs and the French Parliament is currently debating creating a ban on burqas. Of course, the 2005 Paris suburbs riots should have been a wake-up call to the country.

Anti-racism certainly is a myth these days...



Post a Comment

<< Home