The Dutch writer Michiel Mans is an occasional contributor here at Gates of Vienna. His latest essay concerns the parlous relationship between Europe and its Muslim immigrant population.
“Till Death Do Us Part”
by Michiel Mans
Some relationships work; some don’t. If they don’t, things can grow nasty. Love doesn’t always “feed the needs” till sixty-four. In forced marriages there is not even love to begin with. Postpone the divorce too long and one might kill the other, forcing the “till death do us part” vow.
Here in Europe we have many such forced marriages. Native Brits, Belgians, Danes, Dutch, French, Germans, Italians and others were not asked whether they wanted all these millions of Muslims to come and settle in their countries. It must be said however, some Muslims were actually invited. Like thousands of Spaniards and Italians, the first Moroccans* and Turks came on invitation. As “guest workers” on contracts (from about 1960). At least that is how the lock on the floodgate was opened in Holland.
In Holland most of these Moroccan and Turkish guests stayed. And we let them. What’s a few thousand immigrants anyway? Then the Muslim guests had their families come over — and their families — and many more (family) as brides and grooms, often in arranged marriages. The thousands became millions in Europe.
Neighborhoods could absorb some newcomers, particularly if their culture was somewhat similar and they were willing to fit in, adapt, adjust, if not assimilate. The newcomers from, for example, Italy and Spain did. Muslims as a group didn’t. That is the perception. At least from the outside. With among other things their silly dress codes. Because some Prophet or God wants them to dress like that. Or so they and we have been told. Something to do with lust and seduction. Apparently even girls as young as four, five years old can instill lust or beg to be jumped if not properly wrapped up.
And it doesn’t really matter whether most of them actually do try to fit in, adept and adjust, or even assimilate. Human reason is unfortunately mostly based on perception. Not on facts. “We” and “they” are all biased, prejudiced, and arrogant creatures. Perhaps even somewhat racist by nature. A proper education and decent upbringing cannot change that. Not a lot anyway. When emotions start to run high, reason is the first to run away. Between husband and wife, between families and clans, between races and nations.
Of course God doesn’t help either. Because he’s always on our side. Not their side. Unfortunately, their God, whom many of them take extremely seriously, makes them tell or yell at least five times a day that he is indeed the greatest. The one and only true God. And always right. Their book says so, too. Repeatedly. Actually, on every page. Nothing happens or gets done without their God’s consent. In ša Allah. Their God also hates non-believers. And it doesn’t take much to be one. We have just stopped fighting for our God. They still go straight to heaven, dying while doing so.
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Where there is a heaven, there often is a hell as well. The road towards it is always paved with good intentions. Like: “We — our races, cultures, religions and beliefs — are all equal”. Or wishful thinking like: “We can, shall and must all live together in peace and harmony”. Alas, we never have. Or we first kicked someone else out and then we lived happily ever after. Wishes for peace and harmony — which the wishers over time changed into commands- are often immediately followed by wishes of good fortune for all. We all deserve to be rich and if you’re not it’s because some other bastard doesn’t play by the rules. In the case of our well-wishing road-paving friends, these bastards are invariably Westerners. In other words, they themselves. Or their forefathers. They had slaves you know. They stole land. Bastards.
This “Westerners did it” isn’t considered a biased, prejudiced or racist opinion by our well-wishing friends. Oddly enough, “the Muslims did it” — or even “we all did it” — is. Odd, no? Neither Westerners nor Muslims are a race. Or do these non-racist well wishers consider a black, yellow or brownish Westerner something else? Something different? But we are all equal? In good and bad. For better or worse. Till death do us part.
Or we get a divorce. We seem to have reached a point where staying together doesn’t work. We irritate the hell out of each other. We have done so for years (if not centuries). We want to make them like us and they want to make us like them. Neither of us wants to give in. Apart from those who pave the road to hell, that is. Most well-wishers are nice, educated and civilized people. Really. At least that is what they consider themselves. They will eat anything. They are very open-minded. So open-minded that their brains have fallen out.
And even the blind can see we can’t live together in peace. Yes, even the blind can see it. The blind have dogs to see for them. However, take the dog on the bus (or cab) and you might have to leave these eyes behind. Or wait for another bus. Why? Because the religious beliefs of an equal are offended by the presence of the dog. A dog is a filthy animal. Or so the Muslim bus driver tells you. Or one of these well-wishers has an open mind for such bollocks.
As in marriage, sometimes a small incident becomes the fuse to blow it apart. Usually “the bucket was already full”. And the buckets are full in Europe. We must get a divorce. Or the “till death do us part” will be bloody. For everybody. Including those who paved the road to hell.
|*||In 1965 there were 4,500 Moroccans in Holland. In 1971 their number had grown to 22,000. In 1973 the practice of guest worker recruitment stopped. Yet by 1980 there were 72,000 Moroccans in Holland. Their number grew to 168,000 in 1990 and 349,270 in 2010.
Source: Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute at the Research Institute Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences (NIDI-KNAW) and the Official Dutch Statistics Office (CBS).