Mass incarceration of Muslims is a problem in France. That is a fact. While Muslims make up only about 8% of the general French citizenry, between 60 – 70% of all inmates in France are Muslim. This is only a symptom of the general xenophobia found in the populace. Unfortunately, because of such attacks, people are already citing immigration reform that allows discrimination against Muslim and Arab nations while undoubtedly bolstering calls from nativists to outright kick out and force more discrimination against an already disadvantaged group in France. While I am not French, I can relate because here in the United States, people of color face the same sort of suspicion, xenophobia, hatred, etc. despite whether or not we were born in this nation or even wanted to be in this nation.
We are all American regardless of what white supremacy wants you to believe. And all French people, including French Muslims, are, in fact, French. We need to act like it.
Unfortunately, because we are so focused on dividing ourselves and being right that we justify injustice and choose to ignore repeated calls to action in order to combat systemic racism, xenophobia, and the other ways that white supremacy is allowed to roam in the mindsets of marginalized populations in the U.S., France, Europe, and other parts of the world.
But we must remain vigilant and be strong.
We must remember that only love, not hate, only peace, not war, will end the violence. Further division will only allow for more attacks and ignorance of the needs of marginalized populations will only give more false justification for violence.
If you really love peace and want to show love, make sure to stand strong with Black Lives Matter and other groups that fight for people of color, with the LGBTQIA+ community and other marginalized communities, and, above all, act in love and educate yourself not to hate.
With love always,