June 8, 2011

TO BE FRENCH IS TO BE ASHAMED OF ONESELF AND ONE'S NATION:

The scandal of France: power and shame: The arrest in New York of the head of the International Monetary Fund and leading French politician on charges of sexual misconduct is a confusing and revelatory moment in France's public life. Whatever the legal outcome of Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s case some uncomfortable truths have to be faced, says Patrice de Beer. (Patrice de Beer, 8 June 2011, OpenDemocracy)

[I] feel personally ashamed, sorry, and flabbergasted (and I could use many other expletives). Ashamed as a Frenchman that this (mis)behaviour by one of my most prominent compatriots - whatever the legal findings - has tainted us all. The séducteur image long attached to us, which made us so popular in movies (see Maurice Chevalier or Charles Boyer) and to which we love to cling to, should only ever float on personal charm and consensuality and never be abused by force or predation.

But I also feel ashamed of myself as one of very many who - from the depth of our belief that Nicolas Sarkozy had harmed French society and of our desire to see the left win next elections - almost deliberately closed our ears and eyes to what we knew or had heard of DSK's predilections.


Posted by at June 8, 2011 5:45 AM
  

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