The political opportunism and finger-wagging abound in these days of high immigration to Europe. I see you, on the left, nodding your heads, oh that terror-mongering Ted Cruz, what a fucking asshole, you’re saying to yourself now. You’re say, thank ceiling cat I’m not like him, I’m an upstanding, moral citizen with a heart of gold. I think we should HELP these immigrants. Poor Syrian refugees.
Well, political opportunism comes in all shapes and, more importantly, all sizes. You may not be running for anything but the most puritanical amongst your asshole lecturing hectoring social media pseudo-friends, but that doesn’t make you ANY BETTER than Ted Cruz. In much the same way as bitcoin allows you to be your own banker (and end all wars, ask me how!), facebook lets you handle the PR for the tiny little corporation that is you now (and end all wars, ask me how!). If only everyone would acknowledge how awesome you are, listen to your heart-felt ideological convictions, and, you know, just start being NICE to all those immigrants. (I would like to add an extra special fuck you to anybody out there who is also a big Chomsky fan: France is not an annex to your country, and the whole critique your own first thing goes for us too. No, we do NOT share the same culture, no, we did not participate in your war in Iraq, no, we do not want to hear your opinion.)
I would like to offer you all a piece of advice on social media all my own. Here is a short list of things that Europe does not need from the US in the middle of our refugee crisis. Ready?
A million ideas men.
I have a colleague who is dealing directly with the fallout of this bullshit on a local level. Our collective employers decided that it would make them look super good to offer free university tuition and free French lessons to all refugees. They did not define refugee or anything, they just signed a letter and handed the problem off to an underling, who already has a full-time job, and has no additional resources or training for dealing with refugees, and no way of evaluation their status.
Now their is a line out her door all day every day of people with a xeroxed copy of this letter asking for free French courses, for which no budget or admissions criteria have been established. Some of them are children. We’re a university. We’re not equipped to take or teach children, but no matter, we’re ideologically pure. We don’t know who’s a refugee and who isn’t. We don’t know what country people are coming from, or even if they’re in the country legally. We don’t know if the préfecture is going to yell at us for taking these people on, since nobody checked with them. But again, we’re ideologically pure.
So here’s what you can do, right now, to help out. It’s a list of concrete thing and you can start doing them today.
- Admit that you don’t know things that you don’t know. This is a huge problem, involving a lot of countries and cultures, and not a single one of them is your country and your culture. Stop showing off how much you know, and start owning up to what you don’t. Say it publicly.
I don’t know.
You’re right. You don’t. Now say it a lot more often. Tell your friends.
- Come on over to my colleague’s office and offer her a hand. Come on over to HER colleagues’ offices and start teaching French for free to all comers. Don’t know French? Don’t live here? Can’t possibly spend all day every day being a volunteer when the state can’t or won’t hire people to do the job? Don’t have the skills or training to actually help with anything at all because you’re a useless piece of crap dumb ass who spends all day talking shit on the internet and thinks that that is somehow a contribution? See option three, below.
- Make your part of america’s gift to europe on this issue a nice big helping of SHUT THE FUCK UP.