|Man in a Desert||
I was stunned to read last night German Chancellor Angela Merkel's pronouncement that multiculturalism in her country has failed.
Not that the nature of her statement surprised me; that is a truism that applies just as equally to several European countries. The lines of division and borders of separation are pronounced. I'm surprised it took so long for a major European leader to admit the fact.
But Merkel's misguided recipe for the success of multiculturalism is that immigrants should learn to speak German.
Learning the language is important, I agree. But it is not the deciding factor in determining whether a society is, or is becoming, homogeneous.
Look at the various Chinatowns dotted across the Western hemisphere and you will see lots of ethnic Chinese whose command of the local language leaves a lot to be desired. But that hasn't stopped them from making a positive contribution to their adopted/adoptive countries.
Merkel and other European leaders would do well not to lay the onus of this failure solely at the immigrants' doorstep. Self-criticism and self-examination are in order.
The state has failed the immigrants too by not doing enough to integrate them into society, offering them opportunities in the heart of the state's structure and apparatus, and drawing them out of what increasingly became ghettos in the heart of Europe's major urban centers.
A man on a long journey through a perpetual desert.
The opinions expressed in this blog are mine and mine alone. They do not represent the views of any of my employers, past, present or future.