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Of Frogs, Burkhas, and Boiling Pots

Bold action, from the French!

By Petrarch  |  July 27, 2010

Something is not right when the French take a stronger stand against the enemies of civilization than the United States does.

Of course, the French have a much bigger problem in their daily lives than we do.  The United States has a few percentage points of Muslims, most of whom are of the moderate variety and have integrated themselves pretty well into our economic mainstream.  In contrast, not only is the population of France now 10% Muslim, but the culture of the banlieues in which they live has been lifted almost intact from the most repressive and benighted corners of the Islamic world.

We talk about the importance of immigrants assimilating; in France, they hardly even know what that term means.  Large numbers of Muslim youth who have lived their entire lives in France cannot so much as speak French; is it any wonder that they can't find jobs and have no place in the national culture?  Of course, the fact that barely a third of French imams speak French doesn't help.

So the nation of France has created a sizable sub-nation of people who don't understand what it is to be French, don't see themselves as French beyond their passports, and have no desire to become French in any way.  That's poetic justice in a way - the French-speaking Canadians have tried very hard to carve a French-only cultural enclave out of English-speaking Canada at great financial and psychological cost to the rest of Canada.  Turnabout may be fair play, but the French probably don't see it that way - though, to be fair, the French Canadians aren't trying to kill the English ones.

For any nation, harboring this many unemployable, separatist residents would be a severe existential hazard.  The people of France have been concerned about the problem for a long time, but it was only with the riots of the past few years that France's leaders have reluctantly come to realize, as President Sarkozy put it, that the Muslim suburbs need "to be cleaned up with a pressure washer."

Starting with law enforcement is always a good idea, but to change a culture, symbolism sometimes matters even more.  Sarkozy's government has struck a resounding symbolic blow with its vote to ban the burkha from French public places.

Burkhas: Not for Civilized Company

The sight of anonymous funereal shrouds walking the streets of Paris is not just disturbing to chic Parisians.  It is a living, breathing symbol of Islamic separateness from French and Western culture and traditions - a way of walling oneself off from the world.

Many of the thus-secluded Muslim women are forced to dress that way by their husbands or fathers, an infringement of their rights by any definition.  A few choose it themselves - but that's arguably even worse, as they consciously choose to reject the country they are living in.

Not French.
And not American either.

A burkha represents the polar opposite of everything France stands for.

Instead of "Liberty," it symbolizes subservience - to the misogyny of a Koran which teaches a woman is worth half a man, to an infallible clerical hierarchy with its all-encompassing and immutable sharia laws, and to the inhuman teachings of a barbaric prophet and his imaginary god.

Instead of "Equality," it illustrates the teaching that Muslims are responsible only for themselves and have no obligation to respect the rights or preferences of others no matter where they may be.

Instead of "Fraternity," it enforces the teaching of the Koran in Surah 3:28:

Let the believers not make friends with infidels in preference to the faithful-he that does this has nothing to hope for from God-except in self-defense.

If infidels can't see your face, they're not likely to want to make friends with you, thus preserving Muslim women from unwholesome temptation!

As mullahs and imams have proclaimed since Mohammed walked the earth, it is the duty of Muslims to spread their religion until it's the only one around.  The whole point of Islam is to make other believers feel threatened, inferior, no longer in control of their own lives - in the hopes that they'll "repent" and follow the way of Allah.

Islam has always commemorated its victories over other peoples by demolishing their holy places and replacing them with a mosque.

The site that once held Solomon's and Herod's Temple now bears the Muslim Dome of the Rock.  What once was the pagan Kaaba in Mecca is now the holiest site in Islam.  What once was the largest church in Christendom, Constantinople's Hagia Sophia, was converted into a mosque until Mustafa Kemal Ataturk threw the imams out and converted it to a museum.

We see echoes of the same philosophy in the determination to build a mosque at Ground Zero in Manhattan.  In secular France, the French worship their personal liberty, beautiful women, and fine fashions; the dour burkha is a walking assault on all that the French hold dear, and both the French and the Muslims plainly see it so.

For France to ban the burkha is a small, long-delayed step, but a necessary one.  The Frogs have been in the proverbial pot of water long enough, and are starting to jump out before they boil; high time, and more power to them!

Next, perhaps the French can start to take action against other Islamic barbarities - against female genital mutilation, say, or against murderous "honor" killings found everywhere in Islam from Canada to the United States to England to, yes, France.  With a little luck, some French commonsense and strong, determined responses will prove to be contagious.

Maybe we'll catch on here, if not this November, then in 2012!