Via New York Times:
Which politician, President Nicolas Sarkozy, or Jean-Marie Le Pen, the voice of rightist extremism here for more than a generation, said the following about the role of immigrants, particularly Muslims, in their country’s future?
Newcomers must avoid “self-designated victimization.”
“The success of the integration process is hindered by the disproportionate number of nonnatives involved in criminality and troublemaking, by burqas, by men who refuse to shake hands with women.”
And, “The street is mine, too. I don’t want to walk away if they’re standing in my path.”
Answer: Neither Frenchman. The remarks were from Liliane Ploumen, chairwoman of the Dutch Labor Party, the Netherlands’ largest leftist political grouping, as she struggled last year to bring the party closer to Election Day relevance in one of Europe’s traditionally most tolerant societies.
Reality lies beyond this kind of spitting and clawing. And it suggests that in countries at the heart of the European continent’s democratic traditions, there’s a new notion of normalcy.
After years of these societies passively or haphazardly accommodating immigrants from Islamic countries and black Africa, a reversed core notion now insists that the newcomers’ behavior must accommodate the majority’s.
The politics surrounding the change can run from shrill to populistic. But as a position paper issued under Ms. Ploumen’s leadership asserted, governments and politicians had too long failed to accept the feelings of “loss and estrangement” faced by national societies in the face of immigrant communities that disregard or mock their laws and customs.
There is little political upside now in plain ignoring a video clip like a current one described in the French press as “Shoot the Cops” by the rapper Abdul X.