GandalfTheGrey wrote:This is a trend that has affected pretty much all muslim minorities in the west. In general it follows the Saudi driven Islamic revival that has taken root since around the 70s-80s. The wrapping up of western colonialism, and the subsequent cultural backlash against it has been a big part of this revival. Its essentially a case of finding pride in their own cultural identity - as opposed to simply accepting themselves as little western "mini-me's". The adoption of multicultural policies by western countries during the same period has obviously encouraged this.
And it needs to be emphasised that overwhelmingly multiculturalism has been a good thing - like all cultural minorities in the west, muslims have by and large become happier, more productive, and believe it or not - more integrated into society as a result.
Or it is the case that the first generation and, to lesser extents, the second generation, have been very inclined toward integration because they do not take the benefits of a European lifestyle for granted. I believe that the Wahabbi Islamist money is probably a factor, but so is potentially some other things, like:
- Subconscious racism & discrimination, from individuals and institutions, that don't want to mix with Muslims and/or non-white people.
- Jealousy, resentment, and racism from the immigrants themselves -- just as how the natives may have some natural tribalism, so, too, do the immigrants
- Leftist narratives about racism & bigotry that pit them against conservative whites
- Leftist narratives about religion & sexuality that attack Islam or conservative traditional culture and thereby pit Muslims against liberal whites
- General cultural rifts that some individuals will never be able to heal
- Immigrant cultures trying to navigate 'crunched modernity' (the warp speed pace of change that happens when grandpa is pre-modern, dad is half-modern, and you are in peak modernity -- going to school with boys/girls that listen to insane music, smoke weed, and send you pictures of their genitals)
Keep in mind, modernity resulted in terrible growing pains for Westerners as well. It is impossible for it to not negatively impact the immigrants.
I am leaning to the conclusion that multiculturalism is not that great in the long-run.
The far right exaggerates its negatives, and the left thinks that it is going to be a total win, but where, exactly, are the gains? Of course, the argument goes that we need workers... but this could just lead to a discussion about increasing local birth rates. Because the other question, about whether or not this really benefits our society to have all of these new memebrs with different backgrounds, is going to be entirely subjective.
Yes, the Indian & Arab restaurants are tasty -- but we have Indian restaurants everywhere in Korea, and we are still 98% Korean. It is also great to be exposed to foreign cultures -- but does this mean that half of the urban population should be foreigners?
We are seeing lots of talk about inequality that persists in Western Europe, and we see that many of these groups do behave as voting blocs for certain political groups.
I do not think it is wrong to suggest that it isn't that great, and that these problems don't actually resolve themselves very easily as people tend to stick to their own kinds of people and marry those with similar values. Of course, many individuals inevitably integrate with one another & have children, but the ones who become Europeans have 0.8 children with, and taht child goes on to have 0.8 children.
People who integrate are integrating only into the shell of a cosmopolitan culture that has to continue replacing itself, while those who never integrate remain fertile, and continue to cut out their own ethnic enclaves.
And who can blame them? It's a lot toa sk someone to give up their religion & cultural identity.
But of course with the rise of salafism and a militant fringe within Islam these last few decades, that has clearly had an impact on western communities. I believe that in addition to the ideological factor, there are also a lot of economic factors at play too - like the decline in western manufacturing industries and the loss of the previously commonplace unkilled labour jobs.
That's another great point -- we talk about bringing in more immigrants but the jobmarket for unskilled labor is small, and that is exactly what those who arrive by boat (or by foot in America) are offering, by and large.
Its unfortunate that there seems to have been a conflation within the muslim communities between the positive of having pride in your cultural heritage and the negative of thinking this requires shunning the society that welcomed you, and even despising it. But even so, this should not detract from the clear positive of people having a distinct and proud cultural identity - even if it is different (though not opposed or incompatible) to the dominant culture.
As a conservative Christian, I can say that embracing LGBTQ and celebrating Pride month is absolutely counter to my Christian identity, and I cannot do it. So, I think I can understand the Muslim mindset to some degree.
These situations galvanzie us -- and even though we may not be on the streets and causing a ruckus (we all are too busy working and have our own virtues to pursue), there is an ever-growing barrier between ourselves and the "regular" society.
Just as how conservative Chrsitians are even starting to build a parallel society, you can bet the Muslims are going to build their walls between regular Parisian life even higher.
This does not mean that you will have to deal with perpetual terrorism or some ticking timebomb as the far right would have you believe, but I would suggest that Europeans get used to there being parts of their cities & towns that are impenetrable. Again, not necessarily some cartoonish "no-go zone" where people want to chase you away, but a part of the city where you are the foreigner, and you don't feel a little odd sitting in the park or reading in the cafe.
Dare I even say it would be this way for New Yorkers in rural Missourri for over a century. It's not a big deal... But, it's another whole new division.
I broadly agree, but I would be quick to point out that this "cardinal sin" is very often an understandable reaction to the most vile and offensive propagation of hate from the right. They are also acutely aware of history - especially modern history. The left know only too well that its not a big stretch at all to go from "this Islamic inspired beheading was bad" to "all muslims are bad". That is, unfortunately, where we are in this current climate. You and I might understand the nuance, but to your average bigot, condemning Islamic extremism is indistinguishable from condemning Islam and muslims - wholesale. The left is acutely aware of this - so too are they acutely aware that genuine and legitimate concern for Islamic extremism is routinely weaponised by certain sinister elements to push a dangerous Islamophobic agenda - that targets good, law abiding muslims.
The left, therefore, tread extremely carefully on this subject.
I agree with you that this is a tricky thing.
But yuo know, one thing that would go a long way is to use the same tender approach to the reactionaries & conservatives that you do to Muslims.
If people talked about Christian conservative perspectives on LGBTQ as if they had full merit and we just "resepctuflly disagree," and if prominent liberals & comedians regularly talked about how much they admire the good qualities of Christianity and agreed to never doggedly satirize Christ or cheer on people who disrespect it, it'd be this great sea change in conservative attitudes.
People want to be treated by you as well as you treat other people.
If you say to the Muslim, "I respect your traditions and culture, and I am glad you are my neighbor; I may not convert but, please, tell me more. I am interested and value learning about this aspect of you..."
The Christian aspects a similar attitude.
Whenever he doesn't get it, he's rightfully indignant, because this is a form of discrimination and double standards. It also seems doubly insulting because he is standing in the city where he buried his grandfather in an old Christian cemetary, and if he cannot be respected as a Christian in a city that has had a Cathedral since the 8th century, where can he be respected?
Please remember, the working class 50-year old white guy who goes to Mass and works for shit compensation from his bus driving gig in Marseilles has nowhere to immigrate to, no 'future' on the horizon. He sends his kids to schools that are hostile to hsi value system while sensitive to that of foreigners who are more conservative than he is. It can really make you angry, then, if you get snickered at by your liberal nephew for carrying a rosary but lectured by him about how you're a racist for voting FN.