Muslims: Proud of being French?
Whoever asks this kind of question, already answers it by a resounding "NO".
In a quite disturbing publication, the Belgium based CCIE (formerly known as the CCIF that was shutdown by the French government), bragged about how French Muslims were more proud of being French than the national average.
It comes as annoyance to see Muslim organisations, activists and public accepting to justify themselves when it comes to identity. The latter cannot constantly remind public opinion that Muslims have been French for over a century and that colonial and post colonial Muslim immigrants ahve been so for now over four generations, then jump on the occasion when asked whether they are proud to be French or not.
Accepting to answer the question: "Are you proud to be French?" is firstly to recognize some moral authority to the one asking it, as if it were up to him or her to decide who is and who is not a good citizen. Secondly, it also suggests that there is room for doubt. Finally, it reminds Muslims that they have to prove themselves and show an unconditionnal allegiance unlike the rest of the population.
"There is nothing to be proud of when France flouts the same values it carries as a banner"
When white supremacists plan to commit terrorist attacks or arm themselves for civil war, when media figures encourage them with pamphlets, when the rich refuse to pay their taxes in France, when French Jews join the Israeli army of occupation and commit war crimes, when Jewish organisations and public figures act as pressure groups on behalf of the Israeli government, when elected officials put the country at the service of lobbies to the detriment of the national interest, when French corporations pollute the water and the air drank and breathed by all French people, when elected officials from the right put themselves at the service of Russia or the United States, when elected officials from the left or from the extreme right and even a former prime minister act as cheerleaders for dictators like Putin and Xi Jinpin, or when volunteers join the Russian army in Ukraine, they are nover asked whether they are "proud French".
Muslim organizations ought to ask themselves: "Where have we failed to the point of legitimizing such questionning?"
This question posed to Muslims would rather deserve a scathing: "There is nothing to be proud of when France flouts the same values that it carries as a banner" From the undemocratic nature of the Fifth Republic to the support for most dictatorships in the world by all its governments since its proclamation in 1958, including all the wars waged at home and abroad against the poor, there is really nothing to be proud of to be French. And you have to feel French in order to not feel guilty of feeling ashamed for what France represents around the world today in terms of exploitation, looting or subsidizing war.
Once this pride is expressed, what can it be based on and what can it lead to? Is this pride a support for and a defense of republican ideals that have remained a dead letter? Or is this basic chauvinism to pleasesuccessive governments which have continually structured Islamophobia in France? Does this pride in being French require to stand up against leaders who precisely flout all the republican principles so often praised as universal, or is it a type of pride that demands obedience and labels as "anti-French" all acts of disobedience in the face of an ubjust law and order? Is conscientious objection still possible under these conditions?
This kind of publication and their sharing is as pathetic as repeating "I am French" while holding up your identity card. Doing so is just an admission that one is not really convinced of it. When some constantly repeats "I am a human being", one has legitimate reasons to wonder what is wrong with that person. The obvious needs no highlighting.
The very fact that we can ask the question "Are you proud of being french" in the midst of post-separatism law repression after more than two decades of freedom-killing laws explicitly oriented towards those we call "Muslims", would amount to asking a battered woman if she is proud her husband while insinuating that she had better be.
Instead of responding to this kind of injunction, Muslim organizations would do better to ask themselves the question: “Where have we failed so much that we dare ask the question?” As for relaying this kind of nonsense by an organization who fled to Belgium, it leaves you more than perplexed.