08 November 2005

Assimilation in France is alive and well: immigrant riots prove it

While many obsrervers have taken pains to describe the alienation and discrimination that has driven the poor French (immigrant) youth to their desperate acts of violence and civil unreset, their behaviour is actually evidence of something else entirely: that these immigrants have been so assimilated that they are adopting the great Gaulic tradition of manning the barricades and achieving goals through intimidation.

The swarming Parisien teen-agers on scooters with molotov cocktails have far more in common with the peasant farmers dumping produce in the streets, or electricity workers cutting power to whole neighbourhoods, than they do with Muslim radicals in the Gaza strip or Iraq.

What could be truer to the barricaded streets and bonfires of the French revolution than torched automobiles and shopping malls?

Instead of wondering at why 3rd generation African immigrants are upset, it would be a far better question to ask what it is about French society that tolerates terrorism and extortion on a grand scale? Why is that every French government (regardless of stripe) always caves in to the demands of protesters, whether it is angry pilots who want a government bail-out, or truckers who are upset about gasoline prices? Already the French politicians are falling over themselves restoring funding for suburbs, putting money into apprenticeship programs, and other largesse for the poor.

The only mystery here is why it took the teaming underclasses of the French Banilieu so long to finally take to the streets and demand their own piece of the French tax-payer.

Now there is someone who really has a reason to go on a riot...