In an act of ridiculousness that only the far right can deliver, they have somehow managed to make kids afternoon snacks a racial issue. In the past they’ve worked themselves into a lather over Halal food – as if it was dangerous and threatening society – and now it’s the French classic pain au chocolat. It just never ends with these loons.
Of course, we’ve witnessed ridiculous racial outbursts like this in the US and the GOP still lives and breathes this nonsense. Even today, we still hear attacks on the welfare system by people like Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, trying their hardest to make Americans think that anyone who receives benefits are freeloaders and wink, wink, nod, nod, probably African American or Latino.
The truth is of course quite the opposite but the truth doesn’t fit into their world vision of oppressed white people at the hands of those dark-skinned people who are threatening society. What’s always missing with these racist outbursts from the extreme right is a recognition of the real trouble makers. The last time I checked, the overwhelming majority of the bankers who brought down the global economy, were white men. But again, that truth doesn’t play well with the disgusting need to create racial strife.
It began at a rally on the Côte d’Azur this weekend when the hardline Jean-François Copé, fighting a tough race to take over Nicolas Sarkozy’s rightwing UMP party, served a pastry-related anecdote that has been repeating on him ever since.
Having already complained of what he called “anti-white racism” on French estates, Copé said he identified with “exasperated” parents who, after a hard day’s work, got home to find their child had had his pain au chocolat “snatched” from him outside the school gates by “thugs” who said: “There must be no eating during Ramadan.” He then tweeted: “There are neighbourhoods in France where children can’t eat their pain au chocolat because it’s Ramadan.”
Outrage and cries of absurdity followed, from both left and right. The Socialist prime minister slammed what he called a “stigmatising” discourse against minorities. The former Sarkozy minister François Baroin, supporting Copé’s opponent François Fillon, warned against “toxic and dangerous little phrases”. Christian Estrosi, mayor of Nice, devoted Sarkozy ally and Fillon supporter, laughed nervously as he joked on radio: “Pain au chocolat is an inalienable right of all French children.”