September 21, 2006
Understanding The French (Or At Least Trying To)
French-bashing has usually been popular in the U.S. But since the run up to Iraq it seems like it's hit a fever pitch, particularly among those who strongly support the President. America (and the West) is in the fight of it's life against Islamofacist terrorism and the perception to many in this country is that the French government is doing its best to impede our efforts in this struggle.
How accurate this perception is can be debated ad infinitum.
Posted by: Gary at
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Mon Dieu, Gary!
I don't hate the french....
I love the french...as much as they love President Bush. Seriously, I believe that puts me on a level playing ground when I travel.
I've been fortunate enought to have had fantastic opportunities to travel since I was in highschool - a trend that continues to this day. What I've found bubbling under the surface, especialy among Europeans my age, is a jealous fascination with the American culture. To the lurking libs - this phenonmenon did not arise after 9/11. I encountered this repeatedly through the 90's.
I applaud you, Gary, for advocating a non-bashing policy towards the french. When dealing with Euros in public I find it is best to maintain a cool cordiality, until they slip up, then I let them know that their comments are reprehensible. Most wisely shut their mouths...
Look, I know there are French citizens that truly admire President Bush and think highly of the US. I found such individuals when I was last in Spain and I'm sure they exist in france. If they would only organize and vote out of office their current governments...
Anyway, I'm off to plan my next trip...BA is looking good
Posted by: Skye at September 21, 2006 03:55 PM (N1z5v)
Yeah, you know it's nice if we all just got along. But, seriously, ask yourself this: exactly what has France been good for since it lost its king.
That's awful. There are few countries that I can think of who were less useful to the world after they got rid of their monarchies. Russia, China and France are three of them.
It's very difficult for me to think of a country that has, in the last 200 years, achieved so little, yet is so full of itself.
Britain has, for example, been infinitely more useful to the world, and the Brits have nowhere near the chauvanism of the Gauls.
Yes, we do share more in common with the French than we differ. Matter of fact, we share more with chimpanzees than with donkeys, but that doesn't mean I don't hate chimpanzees.
Wait, what am I saying?
In truth, one could make the argument that we have more in common with Saudis than we differ. This argument used to be made with the Russians.
(Do we share much in common? We have a different language. A different system of government, essentially, very different views on the value of an aristocratic class, different economic views, different appreciation for philosophy (they like a philosopher if he's French, we like one if he's useful), different views on religion, the proper role of the state. What do we share in common with them? A Christian heritage? Fat lot of good. We shared that with Germany, too (and more Protestantism in Germany than in France, actually).
But Germany was still our enemy.
I don't give a fig what the French think about us, or what they think about themselves alone at night with their pants around their ankles. What I do care about is that the French stop making things worse EVERY. WHERE. THEY. GO. Name a Democracy France helped create. Now name all the people around the world who live in tyrranical countries supported or established because of French perfidy.
Example: the only reason Ho Chi Minh could even make a case for Communism (and really, he pushed Nationalism with the people) was because the French were such bastards in Viet Nam for a century. We ended up losing our boys for that mess.
So, no. I won't respect the French until they stop asserting their worth and start proving it. And they do damn little of that.
Posted by: Grayson Hill at September 21, 2006 04:41 PM (3Vh45)
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