Saturday, September 22, 2007

What's wrong with Paris?

The next time someone asks me about French anti-Semitism today, I will suggest that he look at the comments to mainstream articles in the American press about Israel, or about any subject with some tangentially Jewish subject matter. The latest batch: the responses to Roger Cohen's NYT piece about Sarkozy's taboo-breaking presidency.

Time will only tell how this guy Sarkozy pans out…but his initial endorsements by our mainstream media and people like Cohen (and other Jewish intellectuals in America) is telling and, needless to say, very troubling for this American.

Notice that there are on the one hand Jews in America, and on the other, Americans. Along with, well, that the fact that some Jews favor a politician is in itself "very troubling."

Then, here's a good one:

Who do you play racket-ball with, roger? SarCONzy has been using the right-wing playbook from the start. Claiming the victimization of French Jews* and the Catholic Church while calling the more pigmented ghetto youth slime.. He has also pushed for morals(catho, of course) to be taught in the public schools. H B Levy suggests that he has been an apologist for Vichy..your attitude about anti-immigrant rhetoric is Panglossian, at best.

*In France, I’d take being Jew over Maghreb any day.

Except that French Jews today tend to be of North African origin, so contrasting "Jew" and "Maghreb," is absurd, as is the remark about pigmentation. Believe it or not, it is possible to be concerned for the fate of French Muslims without making snide remarks about how French Jews have it easy.


Glenn said...

how does the economic status of ex-algerian and morrocan jews compare to the economic status of muslims from the same countries?

This is what I said...

That line about jews having it easy is an anti-minority line that has been used not only against jews but against african americans in the united states, and chinese immigrants, etc etc.

You have it easy, therefore you should accept being bullied into your "place."

Phoebe said...

I don't know exact figures for this, but at any rate they couldn't come from France itself, which does not count by race/religion. But French Jews are by no means uniformly wealthy or even middle-class, and what I understand is that many Muslim-Jewish conflicts occur in low-income banlieues where members of both populations live.

Anonymous said...

Well, no, it's not at all absurd to compare being Maghrebian to being Jewish in France. Most Jews in France identify as part of the Jewish community (which happens to be in majority from North Africa). They do not identify as part of the Maghrebian community (which identifies more as Muslim, especially youth).

You are confusing the history of where people immigrated from, to the social groupings in which they cluster themselves. Those are different things.

The Jews in France whose families came from North Africa are much more successful and upwardly mobile than the Arabs. The attitude is completely different. So is the success. Go to any popular Web site like feujworld and participate in forums and you will understand what I mean.