Thursday, August 12, 2010

Another final solution?

By Capt. Fogg

During WW II the Germans were the bad guys and the French were the good guys, right? Well, some of them certainly were and some of them certainly still are, but if we're looking for another example of the banality -- and universality -- of the hidden but still present nastiness in apparently civilized nations, the examples are everywhere. Examples of the kinds of sentiments that brought us the persecutions, deportations and atrocities my parents' generation went to war over.

No, I'm not talking about the increasingly hostile attitude toward non-aryan immigrants in the American South, but about France and the European Union of which it's part. The Nazis ( and the Inquisition in its time) were less successful in eliminating the Roma, or the Gypsies as it was once more common to call them, then they were in eliminating the Jews or Europe.

Now that travel within the EU has been made so much easier; a basic right of European citizens, France has many Romani camps and that bothers many Frenchmen who are eager to attribute all kinds of mayhem in good old Lou Dobbs fashion. French President Nicolas Sarkozy seems happy to raise his poor ratings by pandering to that good old European Family Value of racism and ethnic prejudice. He plans to break up some 300 camps in the near future and send the Roma back to Romania because of "security problems." As yet, I haven't heard talk about re-establishing them in their ancient homeland in Rajasthan, but maybe that's still too touchy a subject just now.

France isn't the first to expel this wandering group who have appeared as bogey men in a thousand years of European folk lore. Germany Denmark and Italy, for example are instituting similar policies of attributing selected offenses to a group and punishing that group with expulsion rather than individuals actually accused and found guilty. It's doubly disturbing because, of course, Romanian citizens are normally free to reside in EU countries, or so I'm told.

Perhaps enough time has passed that the embarrassment of being caught at the same old Collective Guilt by Ethnicity game isn't enough to make EU member countries circumspect. Certainly that's true in the US where most citizens can't clearly remember as far back as the Bush administration, but equally certain is that looking for ethnic scapegoats in times of economic trouble is not something that died in a Berlin bunker in 1945.

(Cross posted from Human Voices)

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  • The first minute I surfed to this The Top 12 Reasons To Burn A Quran On 9/11 article on Hubpages I decided that The Reaction's frequenters really must be able to comment on this!

    By Anonymous Cammie Novara, at 7:24 PM  

  • Laughed my ass off! Thanks for that.

    By Blogger Capt. Fogg, at 10:31 AM  

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