Saturday, October 28, 2006

Mollified Muslims in France?

Media coverage of the French riots that 'erupted' last November dissipated as the number of vehicles set on fire fell from upwards of 1,400 per night. Prior to this conflagration, dozens of cars were being set ablaze on a nightly basis, and French police faced daily assault from Muslims in-country. So after the spike almost a year ago, the level of chaos fell back to the forty or so burning cars, right? Hardly:
The figures are stark. An average of 112 cars a day have been torched across France so far this year and there have been 15 attacks a day on police and emergency services. Nearly 3,000 police officers have been injured in clashes this year. Officers have been badly injured in four ambushes in the Paris outskirts since September. Some police talk of open war with youths who are bent on more than vandalism.
A little over a year ago, a level of destruction only a third of what occurs today was considered normalcy. Then the deaths of a couple of thugs sparked a powder keg, and anarchy spilled out of France's immigrant enclaves. After the riots burned themselves out (!), we assumed a return to that putative normalcy. But said normalcy is actually much worse, yet little attention is given to it because it's not sensational enough relative to what transpired before.

We're boiling slowly, unaware of slight but continual temperature increases. The most egregious Islamic activities, like the death of Theo Van Gogh, the cartoon madness, the various train and subway bombings, and the French riots work against the Islamization of Europe because they make salient the problems Muslims create. Similarly, the Hispanic immigrant protests in March of this year created a backlash. Better for La Raza to tell the migrants to lay low while the group throws relentless charges of racism at any person advocating immigration reform. It's the subtle changes that are the hardest to counter.

Attacks against French police continue their steady rise:
National police reported 2,458 cases of violence against officers in the first six months of the year, on pace to top the 4,246 cases recorded for all of 2005 and the 3,842 in 2004. Firefighters and rescue workers have also been targeted — and some now receive police escorts in such areas.
Western media sources are good at sensationalizing 'freak' occurences but not so good at putting less sensational happenings into proper perspective. Though last year's riots got the headlines, this year is on pace to be 16% more destructive than last, in spite of the high-profile chaos that transpired last year. But since there hasn't been an abrupt, sensational surge this year, a more violent year is getting less coverage regarding violence than a less violent year did.

Adding to the frustration, muddled birthing trends may be creating a positive veneer to mask an ominous reality:
While falling birthrates threaten to undermine economies and social stability across much of an aging Europe, French fertility rates are increasing. France now has the second-highest fertility rate in Europe -- 1.94 children born per woman, exceeded slightly by Ireland's rate of 1.99. The U.S. fertility rate is 2.01 children.
Randall at Parapundit then asks:
What I'd like to know: what is the native French fertility rate and what is the Muslim fertility rate?
Great question. Unfortunately the French government doesn't keep statistical information by race or ethnicity. The comments section is rich with speculation and other commentary that's worth the read nonetheless. Common sense and compassion dictate that if it is the French that are causing the 'youths' to riot, more innocent Muslim children should not be brought into the oppression and poverty faced by the nation's Muslim minority. And if the Muslim enclaves are responsible, the same dictate that French citizenry not be subjected to such aggression. France needs to know where the ferility rates are coming from to gauge whether or not the incentives have been successful.

However, the growth might not be overwhelmingly attributable to Muslims. With nearly 10% of the country now comprised of Muslims, primarily from Algeria and Morocco, an increasing number of births are not to children of European descent. Still, fertility in those countries, at 1.89 and 2.68 births per woman, respectively, doesn't make it obvious that French Muslim fecundity is significantly greater than that of the European French. It'll be interesting to watch how incentives and subsidies offered to Japanese parents turn out (Japan, like Russia, is suffering an absolute population decline and is interested in the French model).

(Clash of civilizations)


F.C. said...

Dear Epigone,

as a Frenchman who used to live in similar "banlieues" I can tell you that the motive of these guys is fame. If they want to go upwards in their "cité" hierarchy they have to do nastier and nastier things to impress their friends and gang members. Since the media report only the right end of the bell curve of violent acts and consider car burning now as background level of violence, young thugs start doing terrible things like throwing molotov cocktails in public buses (like they did last week in Marseille) or hijacking them. Nicolas Sarkozy has his hands bound because if his policemen seriously injure or kill one of these thugs he will surely lose the next presidential election to his socialist rival.

nzconservative said...

Note that such riots have been going on quite a while.

For example, when I visited Paris in 1995 there was a riot going on, apparently because an elderly French war veteran had been taking pot shots at some North African youths that were tormenting him.

This riot, like many others, was not reported widely reported in the media.