By Conrad Yiridoe
Ornishi’s brief piece on Renaud Camus’s and his insight on the idea of the great replacement is interesting as well. Unfortunately, the thoughts behind Camus’ viewpoint are not hugely surprising. Camus even admits that “in fact, he acknowledged that his understanding of such people was based mainly on Twitter and Facebook. He said he almost never read newspapers or watched television.” Of course, he is not alone in developing opinions chiefly from social media, nor is he the first person of “influence” to do so. In addition, this is not an argument to state that news media or television sources are more or less reliable in comparison. However, it does provide a timely reminder of the power the new online social media platform provides.
What I find even more intriguing are some of the other quotes from Camus explaining his specific viewpoints on migrants and Muslims. For example, his view that “the immigrants are “colonizing” France by giving birth to more children and making its cities, towns — and even villages — unlivable” does not appear well polished, given that the blame here is directly tied to an increasing birthrate. It also, in a sense is confusing (at least to me), as I would have thought that given his apparent detest for immigration, he would prefer these migrants give birth to their children in the country, instead of allowing them to grow up and learn abroad before then moving in to the country. Hence, allowing said children to learn and be raised in French society. Camus goes on to state that, “they came as conquerors and colonizers, filled with hatred and a desire to punish France. He singled out Muslims for “not wanting to integrate” into French society.” Again, it is interesting to note how Camus is quick to single those moving into the country as apparent “colonizers” who do not wish to ingrain within the country, but then also criticize those that continue to bear children in the country. Whether one agrees or disagrees, the differencing viewpoints are thought-provoking to say the least.
El-Tayeb sums up the ongoing sentiment rather well I feel, by saying ““The framing of Islam not only as a ‘social order’ dictating every aspect of the life of every Muslim, but as an order incompatible with, if not actively opposing, ‘European values’ of tolerance and democracy has been thoroughly mainstreamed.” From these readings, it seems that the focus on instilling a fear of any change that welcoming Islam into certain European states may bring, has become a prevailing political attitude. It also appears as though this attitude will not be going away anytime soon.