Monday, November 14, 2005

AP Writer: Wild Infants Roam Paris Streets

Mainstream journalists are busy now that the riots in France are showing signs of petering out. Well, they're petering out if you accept the premise that the most accurate measure of the level of violence is the number of cars being burned. Of course that might simply indicate that the French are learning not to leave their cars where crowds of "youths" shouting "Allahu Akbar" can find them and burn them. And, of course, the supply of cars might be petering out.

Be that as it may, reporters are now turning their analytic skills toward explaining why the rioting has been happening. For instance, Scheherezade Faramarzi, an "Associated Press Writer" raises the question:
CLICHY-SOUS-BOIS, Paris Nov 11, 2005 — Night after night of rioting across France in which children as young as 10 have hurled firebombs and torched cars has prompted many people to ask: Where were the parents?
Certainly a fair, even burning question that has occurred to many Americans. And Scheherezade has an answer [emphasis added]:
Many parents are struggling to make ends meet, leaving them little time for their children. They often can hardly communicate with their sons and daughters: Many parents are not French citizens and never learn to speak French, while their children don't learn the language of their ancestors.
Let us ponder this statement in a way that Scheherezade and her editors evidently failed to do. It's really two theses, each of which seems reasonable taken alone.

First, immigrants fail to assimilate into the society of their new home, because they either cannot, or will not, learn the language. Okay, that happens here in America. Nothing startling there, and it would almost certainly guarantee that family income will be low, thus relegating these unfortunates to banlieu residence.

Second, the children of these immigrants do not learn their parents' native tongue. Okay, fine; lack of communication within the household leads to loss of parental control, the youths turn to violence, yada-yada...Presto! Paris riots.

So, if we accept Scheherezade's chain of logic we have a convenient explanation for rioting by youth alienated through no fault of their own. There's just one problem. If the parents speak no French, and the children don't speak Arabic or Farsi or whatever...this means that we have wild babies with no language skills whatsoever running rampant in France!

According to Scheherezade's reasoning they can't be learning French until they enter school. And since their parents have been unsuccessful at teaching them any language at all, we can only imagine the grunts, hoots, whistles, and shrieks that must punctuate those first few months of kindergarten.