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Thread: Multiculturalism has failed, says French president

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    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    Default Multiculturalism has failed, says French president

    Multiculturalism has failed, says French president - Yahoo! News



    PARIS (AFP) – French President Nicolas Sarkozy declared Thursday that multiculturalism had failed, joining a growing number of world leaders or ex-leaders who have condemned it.

    "My answer is clearly yes, it is a failure," he said in a television interview when asked about the policy which advocates that host societies welcome and foster distinct cultural and religious immigrant groups.

    "Of course we must all respect differences, but we do not want... a society where communities coexist side by side.

    "If you come to France, you accept to melt into a single community, which is the national community, and if you do not want to accept that, you cannot be welcome in France," the right-wing president said.

    "The French national community cannot accept a change in its lifestyle, equality between men and women... freedom for little girls to go to school," he said.

    "We have been too concerned about the identity of the person who was arriving and not enough about the identity of the country that was receiving him," Sarkozy said in the TFI channel show.

    British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Australia's ex-prime minister John Howard and Spanish ex-premier Jose Maria Aznar have also recently said multicultural policies have not successfully integrated immigrants.

    Merkel in October said efforts towards multiculturalism in Germany had "failed, totally."

    The comment followed weeks of anguished debate sparked by the huge popularity of a book by a central banker saying that immigrants, in particular Muslims, were making Germany "more stupid."

    Britain's Cameron last week pronounced his country's long-standing policy of multiculturalism a failure, calling for better integration of young Muslims to combat home-grown extremism.

    He urged a "more active, muscular liberalism" where equal rights, the rule of law, freedom of speech and democracy are actively promoted to create a stronger national identity.

    The prime minister, who took power in May 2010, argued that "under the doctrine of state multiculturalism, we have encouraged different cultures to live separate lives, apart from each other and the mainstream".

    He said this had resulted in a lack of national identity in Britain which had made some young Muslims turn to extremist ideology.

    Sarkozy said in his television interview Thursday that "our Muslim compatriots must be able to practise their religion, as any citizen can," but he noted "we in France do not want people to pray in an ostentatious way in the street."

    French far-right leader Marine Le Pen late last year came under fire for comparing Muslims praying in the streets outside overcrowded mosques in France to the Nazi occupation.

    Marine Le Pen said there were "ten to fifteen" places in France where Muslims worshipped in the streets outside mosques when these were full.

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    Silver Member Working Girl's Avatar
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    Too little too late

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    Eh, reap what you sow.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    "If you come to France, you accept to melt into a single community, which is the national community, and if you do not want to accept that, you cannot be welcome in France," the right-wing president said.
    See, the issue here is one of assimilation vs. integration. In immigrant nations like Canada, immigrants integrate into what is also essentially an immigrant nation. It's kind of like being filed under a heading. We're all Canadians, but we (for the most part) come from different cultures. There isn't a losing of that cultural identity, it's an adding of it to the NATIONAL identity.

    Of course, it's a bit different in Europe where you have a long entrenched single culture on its ancestral lands in each nation. A monoculture, basically.

    "We have been too concerned about the identity of the person who was arriving and not enough about the identity of the country that was receiving him,"
    There is a ring of truth in this. There has been a lot of accommodation for newcomers, which is fine.. but a good chunk of it is stretching to the point where the indigenous culture is being asked to ignore its own cultural tenets or get rid of them altogether in order to be overly accommodating.
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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    See, the issue here is one of assimilation vs. integration. In immigrant nations like Canada, immigrants integrate into what is also essentially an immigrant nation. It's kind of like being filed under a heading. We're all Canadians, but we (for the most part) come from different cultures. There isn't a losing of that cultural identity, it's an adding of it to the NATIONAL identity.

    Of course, it's a bit different in Europe where you have a long entrenched single culture on its ancestral lands in each nation. A monoculture, basically.
    It's difficult to think of a country more monocultural than France. If I understand correctly, they regularly review new words to see if they sound Francophone enough, and if not, they invent a new word that sounds French.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    There is a ring of truth in this. There has been a lot of accommodation for newcomers, which is fine.. but a good chunk of it is stretching to the point where the indigenous culture is being asked to ignore its own cultural tenets or get rid of them altogether in order to be overly accommodating.
    I could be wrong, but it seems like France has been a little bit in denial about how accommodating they have been toward muslim newcomers. From what I've read, it sounded like new immigrants were settled into large, multi-story apartment buildings that are actually physically apart from the rest of the population. Which would actually encourage people to stay with their original cultural practices and not be immersed in France's. And I've also heard that it was coupled with discrimination by employers toward people with "muslim-sounding" names, so there was a higher rate of unemployment among muslim newcomers, especially youths, leading to more of a sense of separateness and frustration.

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    Elite Member darksithbunny's Avatar
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    Well I guess I wasn't the only one to say No Shit.

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