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Effects of Poverty
By Ramah Kudaimi

Response to Chicago Tribune's "Riots Could Happen in Rest of Europe"

In his article “Riots could happen in rest of Europe,” Tom Hundley writes in reference to the recent riots in France, “Most are Muslims, which may impede their integration into Western societies, but Islam itself did not appear to be an organizing or motivating element in the French riots” (Nov. 20). Yet, in the same article, he goes on to argue that the multiculturalism solution of many European countries has failed, citing the July 7th bombings and the murder of a Dutch filmmaker by a Muslim.

No where in the article is there a comprehensive analysis of the actual cause of the riots: poverty. Minorities in France and Germany especially are not allowed the representation required to change their status. Americans saw after Hurricane Katrina how minorities can be driven to desperation when they are continuously ignored by the government that is supposed to help them integrate within the greater nation. Yet Hundley ignores these issues and continues to focus on the different, and supposedly opposing, cultural backgrounds of minorities.

In a global world, a homogenous nation no longer exists. All countries must realize they will have citizens of multi-ethnic, multi-racial and multi-cultural backgrounds. Until governments make a commitment to accepting everyone living within their borders as equal citizens, anguish and desolation will continue driving the poor. If governments fail to do this, then riots will definitely happen not only across Europe, but the entire globe.

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