22 C
Κυριακή, 26 Μαΐου, 2024

Vive la haine!

By Amalia Theocharidou,

We live in the times where “support” has become a trend. We see calls for support on various matters, lurking from the headlines of a well-known newspaper, to the news titles of a morning show, right before it hits a break. And I say a trend, because there’s a visible aspect that holds us back from standing up from our seats and applauding the admirable efforts. And that is hypocrisy. As March is coming to an end, the international community was saddened to take a look on France’s latest plague, hate crimes. Hate crimes are purposely violent acts that are driven towards a person or a community due to hatred for one’s race, gender, sexual orientation or religion. They aim to frighten or ridicule the victims and make them feel unwanted.

Kind of ironic considering how France is one of the first countries on the list against the battle of hate crimes. A country of democracy and independence that is the last one we would expect to have anything to do with the plague of racism. The said phenomenon has been noticed to have augmented up to 32% in 2023, according to a research published in March 2024, by France’s Service Statistique Ministériel de la Sécurité Intérieure, as 8,500 incidents were noted by the police, in Paris alone, due to the fact that most of the foreigners visit the capital (TRT World, 2024).

The crimes were firstly aimed towards the Jewish, with anti-Semitic gangs desecrating Jewish graveyards by drawing swastikas onto the graves. As the world events took action, though, the hatred originated from the Palestine-Israeli war, and mostly from the attacks of Hamas, that the French associated with the ISIS attacks that took place in their country a few years ago. As the reports show, men of 25 and 54 years old, and more specifically of African origins, were pointed out as criminals and terrorists, falling preys of xenophobia. Even though the rise could be characterized as scary, alarming and in definite need of a halt, only four percent of the victims issued a complain (Myers, 2024).

Image of desecrations in a Jewish graveyard. Image Rights: Reuters

The above mentioned incidents can all be combined in order to understand the societal situation. Given the anti-Semitic actions of the past and combining it with the social displeasure of people over Israel and the Jewish, can result to an overall hatred and displeasure over Hamas and their attacks, which to the French resemble finely the bloody events of the past. The French want their way out of the complex situation, thinking that the existence of migrants in their country makes them an easy target.

Anti-Semitism actually faced a big rush during 2023, which was directed by the French Far Right. The party claims to support patriotism, the French interests over the shake of a multidimensional society, a France for the French, making us recall the country’s attitude during the Second World War and how it partnered with Hitler in order to eradicate the Jewish. The party’s statements actually become more interesting when one finds out that it’s led by a 28 year-old man, Jordan Bardella, who calls the patriots to form a rebellion against the “evil” immigrants who wish to submerge them (Leven, 2024).

As one can easily detect, the described acts don’t comply with the whole “liberty and cultural freedom” that is diffused in our society. And I dare to describe the entire world scene as a common society, given the tact of “copying and pasting” political and societal acts. Is it too late, then, until racism – under the mask of patriotism – rings our bell?

  • Hate crimes spike in France. Politico. Available here
  • Religion-based hate crimes in France soar after Israeli war on Gaza: data. TRTWORLD. Available here
  • French police report rise in racist and religion-based offences. rfi. Available here



Amalia Theocharidou, Editor-in-Chief
Amalia Theocharidou, Editor-in-Chief
Born in 2003, she is an undergraduate student in the department of International and European relations in the university of Piraeus. She likes to travel and get to know new cultures and environments. She loved writing since she was young which is what inspired her to start publishing articles.