Up Next: House Demolitions?

This article, which appeared in yesterday’s Le Monde, took my breath away. Here’s a snippet:

Le député-maire UMP de Draveil (Essonne), Georges Tron, a annoncé, lundi 14 novembre, la suspension “immédiate” dans sa commune des aides sociales aux familles des fauteurs de troubles. Le ministre délégué à la famille, Philippe Bas, a, pour sa part, indiqué qu’une loi prévoyant une suspension des allocations familiales pour les parents qui n’exercent pas correctement leur fonction parentale était en cours “d’évaluation“.

For the non-Francophone among you, let me translate. The mayor of Draveil has decided to immediately suspend any state allocation payments to the families of any youths caught rioting. In addition, a new law is under study that would similarly suspend family allocations to parents who do not “correctly exercise their parental functions.”

This clear violation of human rights is printed without further comment in Le Monde. Someone should send them this quote, from the Geneva Convention:

No protected person may be punished for an offence he or she has not personally committed. Collective penalties and likewise all measures of intimidation or of terrorism are prohibited.

France may not be at war, but when the state of emergency is invoked and curfews applied, it seems like the relevant document to go by. Imagine the outcry in this country if the government had decided to suspend welfare payments to the families of African-American kids rioting in Los Angeles in April 1992?


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