Paris is a historical place.
Many people go to the Basilica of Sacre-Coeur church that was built in 1914 to pray. It took nearly 40 years to build this church and it sits atop a hill. It was built 130 meters above sea level coming in as the second highest attraction in Paris after the Eiffel Tower!
Approximately 10 million people walk up the steep steps each year to visit this church each year. This is where you can see many great sites in Paris. Plus, a nun was explaining to us that for 16 euro, you can sleep at this church overnight to pray!
For some reason, France does not consider the ethnicity or race of its citizens; even though France is a diverse country which includes people of all ethnic groups. So the French do not know exactly how many people of color are in the country because the lawmakers refuse to add the question of ethnicity or race in its National Statistics.
The general sentiment among the leadership in the country is that it is racist to add questions of race and ethnicity (Following this logic, since gender is one of the options on the form, should France be considered sexist?). Further, the Black Parisians will tell you clearly and with all certainty that racism exists in France. The legendary author, Franz Fanon spoke about this issue of racism in the 1950's and 60's indicating, after traveling from Martinique to France, that he learned that he would never be considered French.
So how can racism ever be eradicated if Parisians do not even acknowledge people of color by taking a count of the diversity in their country. This seems to be something that should be celebrated, not hidden. So could this simply be a ploy by the French to continue discrimination, since no one can really speak in terms of race?
What's your honest take on this issue?
Authors: Tiffany & Kennard Copeland
We are a husband and wife team, who reside in Washington DC and are living our dreams by interacting with people and experiencing cultures from around the world. Our goal is to use our lives to make the greatest possible contribution to humanity