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Indeed what the current push across Europe with the rallying cry "integration" forcefully overlooks is that integration needs both sides, and the greatest block of integration is the daily confrontation with xenophobes (which can be overbearing even if just every 20th man one meets in daily life is one of them).

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Wed Oct 27th, 2010 at 06:33:26 AM EST
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I confess my own opinion on this xenophobic stuff shifted a bit the moment I have understood that one person acting xenophobically was doing so from the shock of my own behaviour which appeared, to her, as I came to see later, very unusual. And when I managed to forget for a moment my own inner conflicts by endless attempts to arbitrate between adjusting to a different way and holding on to my own identity, I actually did come to enjoy those moments of communion in my newly-found community. I still could not answer which way is better: assimilate and enjoy your new life, trying to forget a big part of your former self. Or holding on to most of it, and trying instead to get used to that reflex glint of "odd" in the other's eyes when looking at you. Balancing is a nearly impossible task, and in my experience most non-european, and even many european-origin immigrants find it way too hard to accomplish.

Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last! (Martin Luther King)
by ValentinD (walentijn arobase free spot frança) on Wed Oct 27th, 2010 at 11:48:29 PM EST
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