Attack in Paris will empower Europe’s far right

Attack in Paris will empower Europe’s far right

Responding to the massacre at the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, President Barack Obama and other public figures such as John Kerry, author Salman Rushdie — even the far-right nationalist French politician Marine Le Pen — have defended the right to freedom of expression as a core democratic value. Huge demonstrations in solidarity with the victims are occurring throughout France and in many European capitals.

The slogan “Je suis Charlie Hebdo” is circulating widely in social media. Twitter is inundated with tweets about the political power of satire. Pictures of demonstrators holding pens in the air abound.

Freedom of expression is undeniably worth defending but is too narrow a frame for this event.

With this horrific event, Le Pen may well have become the front-runner in France’s 2017 presidential elections. These killings will reverberate throughout the shaky European Union, where nationalist parties of all stripes are warning of the dangers of too much immigration.

Continue reading →

Commenting Policy

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, vulgarity, profanity, all caps, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain a courteous and useful public environment where we can engage in reasonable discourse.

You may use HTML in your comments. Feel free to review the full list of allowed HTML here.