This is a fresh voice, underrepresented voice. I think the French need to put race front and center – account for these realities. Account for the numbers. My Asian American and Canadian brothers are at the lowest marriage rates, highest mental illness. Maybe you prefer to see your populations ground down and demoralized. Is that what you want in France with your women? Will you help protect them?
I first came to France twelve years ago during my junior year abroad. I was the first person in my family to get a passport and I could barely contain my excitement. In the winter of 2003, two years before the riots that followed the untimely deaths of 15 year old Zyed Benna and 17 year old Bouna Traore, I landed in Paris bright-eyed and bushy tailed, armed with a very shaky grasp of French and a naive fascination with this beautiful country.
As an African-American, I was vaguely aware that France did not deal with issues of race the way we do in the United States. And when I happened to forget, French white people were keen to remind me. In one of the sociology classes I took at a university in the south of France, I hesitantly raised my hand to ask a question. The white French professor had…
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