Immigration As A Source Of Conflict In France - Essay Example

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From the discussion in the essay "Immigration As A Source Of Conflict In France," it may be concluded that immigration adds competition for resources in the country and, therefore, the government should provide enough job and investment opportunities…
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Immigration As A Source Of Conflict In France
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Immigration As A Source Of Conflict In France
France has witnessed a huge share of immigrants since the French revolution and is considered the 4th best destination in the world. Most of the immigrants are North Africans and come from countries such as Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia. After fighting for France in the colonial times, they migrated to France and were accorded citizenship (Seljuq, 2). Others are refugees being there to escape the horrors of their homes such as fighting. The immigrants enter France legally or illegally.
The conflict in France is multi-natured. First, it can be attributed to religion as it takes place between the Muslims and the Christians. The Muslims faithful contain the second largest religious community after the Roman Catholics feel that they should allowed wearing the headscarf in schools (Seljuq, 8). The wearing of the hijab in French public schools sparks up a debate by the Christians and other religious groups since of the separation of the church and the state banning all religious symbols in public schools. This leads to demonstrations by the Muslims and a series of court proceedings to try and reverse the decision. The conflict escalates when the Muslim immigrants demand separate schools for their children that are government funded. This is in competition with their Catholic counterpart’s Mission schools that are funded by the government therefore demanding the same (Graham, Wade, 3).
The religious conflict is also evident in the condemning of Islamic traditions and rituals such as animal sacrifices by the other religious groups mostly the Christians. Terrorism is associated in France is associated with the Islamic activists and not the Christians prompting the withdrawal of funding to the Paris mosque and banning of Islamic periodicals. This shows the height of the religious conflict and intolerance for the two religions in France. The conflict is also socioeconomic in nature. With a huge proportion of the immigrants being unemployed, (about 50 %), there is a rise in labor riots in France (Seljuq, 4). This can be attributed to the competition for jobs between the North African immigrants with the local French laborers. This is because they are willing to work at lower wages due their lack of skills.
This has sparked up racism and ethnic violence between the French Nationals and the North African immigrants. The immigrants feel they are not accepted as being French and are stigmatized to go back to their country, as they do not belong in France. They are not given jobs due to their immigrant nature and end up doing work beneath them (Chrisafis, 5). The lack of employment has also sparked up social evils and increased the crime rates in the country. The governments of the day are forced to deport some of the illegal immigrants to avoid extreme political movements due to high unemployment rates among the immigrants.
There are two key things that are depicted about immigration as a source of conflict in contemporary France. First, immigrants come along with their cultural practices, religion, and this when they interact with local nationals, conflict can arise in the attempt of either group trying to dominate the other. This makes integration of the immigrants with the local communities difficult and can result to animosities between the two. Second, immigration adds competition for resources in the country and, therefore, the government should provide enough job and investment opportunities so as to avoid socio-economic conflict and labor woes.
Works Cited
Chrisafis, Angelique. "Immigration: France Sees Tensions Rise Five Years on from Paris Riots." (2010): 1-4. Print.
Graham, Wade. "The French Immigration Debate:" The Social Contract (1991): 47-51. Print.
Seljuq, Affan. "Cultural Conflicts: North African Immigrants in France." The International Journal of Peace Studies 2.2 (1997): 1-11. Print. Read More
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