Audrey Pulvar, deputy mayor of Paris has sparked new anger by calling for white people to be banned from discussions of racism
The deputy mayor of Paris has sparked anger by calling for a ban on whites from discussions of racism.
Left-wing deputy mayor Audrey Pulvar, 49, said whites “ should be asked to be quiet and be silent spectators ” during discussions of racism attended by black and ethnic minorities.
She explained, “People who are discriminated against for the same reasons and in the same way feel the need to meet and talk about it.”
Born in Martinique, Pulvar’s comments have raised concerns about the rise of American waking culture in the French state.
A collection of politicians, leading intellectuals and academics argued last month that France was tainted with American ideas of race, gender and post-colonialism, and that they were undermining French society.
The group has seen Pulvar’s comment as proof that French society is being eroded by American ideals, The times reports.
Protesters hold up signs during an anti-racism protest in Paris last year
Former Socialist Prime Minister Manuel Valls said Pulvar’s comments betray French values in an interview on Europe 1 Radio.
He said: “This rhetoric, which always justifies the victim, leads to disaster … Do you have to be Jewish to talk about anti-Semitism?”
The feud, which exposed the divisions in French politics, was prolonged when President Emmanuel Macron waded into the debate in October in a speech about the “fight against separatism.”
Macron warned against “leaving the intellectual debate to others,” as he warned of the emergence of “social science theories” imported from the US.
Macron also claimed that the increasing prevalence of American waking culture in France was a threat to national unity.
The French president had previously been largely silent on the matter, with the official line of government dismissive of race and systemic racism.
The debate has exposed the schisms within French politics – most notably between traditional socialists and greens and radicals, who have openly adopted American identity politics.
A Black Lives Matter protest in Paris in June after George Floyd’s death. Academics have criticized the protests
The feud follows tensions over protests against police brutality in France last summer, sparked by the death in police custody of George Floyd.
The wave of protests caused activists to take to the streets and pressure students institutions not to invite famous speakers.
The mid-June protests in Paris were organized under the banner ‘Justice for Adama’, after Adama Traoré, a 24-year-old black man who died in French police custody in 2016.
Family and friends said he died of suffocation, in the manner of George Floyd, the American said to have been murdered by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota in May 2020.
Among the protesters was Assa Traoré, Adama’s sister, who called on people to “denounce social, racial and police violence.”
Ms Traoré said: ‘What is happening in the United States, is happening in France. Our brothers are dying. ‘
Mr. Traore had run away from a police check in Beaumont-sur-Oise, a town north of Paris, and died hours later at a nearby police station.
The vague circumstances of the incident have led to allegations of a state cover, and his family has been fighting for justice ever since.
Academics criticized the protests in France.
In February, social scientists Stéphane Beaud and Gérard Noiriel published a book claiming that race is a “bulldozer” destroying other subjects.
The couple said they feel that race should not be studied as an academic subject in France because the secular government does not recognize it.
The feud follows tensions over protests against police brutality in France last summer, sparked by the death in police custody of George Floyd. The wave of protests caused activists to take to the streets and pressure students institutions not to invite famous speakers