November 10, 2005

More on the Paris Riots

Lots of people have been linking to this, but Juan Cole's piece on the subject is pretty damn key.

Lots of conservatives hate and deride Juan Cole, and this pretty much shows why--he sees right through them.


  1. Anonymous6:11 PM

    He does have a point that this isn't necessarily the intifadah and that the problem is not immigration per se.

    But what solutions, exactly, is Mr. Cole proposing? That the French be a little more tolerant of different sorts of Frenchness? I don't see how more understanding and respect by the majority is going to get the minority to stop torching cars.

    Wouldn't the solution perhaps be to integrate these people better and to sternly punish those who commit crimes? It is, sometimes, OK to blame the criminals for the crime they commit.

  2. i don't really think he meant to offer any solutions as explore why the conservatives are viewing this situation so ass-backwards. Or at least that was his main objective.

    But you definitely have a point.

  3. Anonymous12:23 AM

    I think Cole is wrong in comparing American immigration to French immigration and the way in which those immigrant populations identify themselves. The major problem, as I see it, of emigrating to Europe is that you are entering a nation that often is defined by its race. Germany was founded by Germans, Ireland by the Irish, Italy by the Italians, and France by the French. They are distinct nationalities. So, even if you are a third generation immigrant in Germany, you won't be German per se, you'll be a German citizen. And I think that difference is quite important. America is one of the few countries that, outside of the general "white" never had a specific racial identity. While it certainly made immigration hard on those who were not of European descent, the pattern of a nation in which all nationalities were welcomed was transferrable later on the down the line to welcome in and assimilate those immigrants that were not of European descent. Just a thought...

  4. are you arguing that there are such things as pure races? because that's the only way to have specific racial national identities mean very much. I don't particularly care for that idea.

  5. an alum5:53 PM

    Pure races don't need to exist in order to have countries founded on the idea of pure races or nationality. European states since the 1800s have existed on the basis of nationality and little else. And national identity remains a powerful force, as evidenced in Eastern Europe.

  6. and that's a good thing??