(AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)
Charles Krauthammer has written an article in Time Magazine covering the riots in France: read it here. (Via RealClearPolitics) He does an excellent job of describing some of social problems currently plaguing Europe. For example he describes the adversaries in the riots as follows:
On the one side are the protester-arsonists, many if not most of them Muslim, whom the Interior Minister called racaille (rabble)–young, restless, violent, vibrant, angry, jobless, envious and fecund. And on the other side is an aged and exhausted civilization, the hollowed-out core of European Christendom, static, aging, contented, coddled, passive and literally without faith. Who would you think will win in the end?
He goes on to describe the current failure of the Europeans to reproduce, the massive immigration of muslims and their exceptional birthrates. Nothing you haven’t read here before, but none-the-less important in understanding the brewing culture clash going on in Europe and the desperate religious state of Europe:
France thus is approaching 10% Muslim. But things do not stand still. Even if there were no further immigration, which is a pipe dream, birth rates alone will soon drastically alter the balance. Muslims have the highest birth rate–three times the rate of non-Muslims–of any demographic group in Europe. The most common name for a newborn in neighboring Brussels is Mohammed. Childbearing rates among non-Muslim Frenchmen are well below replacement levels. The old French, like the rest of Europe, are literally disappearing.
“With current trends,” Professor Bernard Lewis has said, “Europe will have Muslim majorities in the population by the end of the 21st century.” The future? “Europe will be part of the Arab west, of the Maghreb [Muslim northwest Africa].” Today’s rioting youth are just a bit ahead of their time in claiming their upcoming patrimony.
Mark Steyn explains the underlying tensions in his most recent editorial on the subject:
…the Continent isn’t multicultural so much as bicultural. There are ageing native populations, and young Muslim populations, and that’s it: “two solitudes”, as they say in my beloved Quebec. If there’s three, four or more cultures, you can all hold hands and sing We are the World. But if there’s just two – you and the other – that’s generally more fractious. Bicultural societies are among the least stable in the world, especially once it’s no longer quite clear who is the majority and who is the minority – a situation that much of Europe is fast approaching, as you can see by visiting any French, Austrian, Belgian or Dutch maternity ward.
The troubles in Europe are just beginning. I don’t believe these are problems government can effectively solve. Many of you may be wondering how injecting Christianity into a growing Muslim society can do anything but make matters worse. I would respond that part of the reason their is so much hostility toward western Christians is exactly what Krauthammer describes above. The post-christian ideology of Europe (and much of the United States) leads muslims to a corrupted view of Christianity. To most Arab Muslims, your average Frenchman – who has been in a church twice, once to be christened and once to be married – is a Christian. The people of Europe, both Muslim and non desperately need to see real Christianity. They need to see Jesus.