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who died a couple of years ago, he was always "most popular Frenchperson" according to opinion polls (at least since the death of Jacques-Yves Cousteau) for his outstanding humanitarian work

... and who, in his nineties, publicly made anti-Semitic statements in support of a negationist friend.

I don't care how lucid this Thomas person is (I know nothing about her), but I note that old folks tend to go back to their roots. In both these cases, I find it hard to hold it against them (in the case of the abbé, he's from old Lyonnais bourgeois stock, and they are uniformly anti-semitic once you scratch the surface...) However it disqualifies them from public debate, necessarily. I think it's quite right she got the sack. Being "anti-"anything in the terms she used is completely beyond the pale.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Jun 8th, 2010 at 06:18:16 AM EST
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Lyonnais bourgeois... are uniformly anti-semitic once you scratch the surface

Talk about sweeping (and insulting) generalisation!

Otherwise, I agree with your view: once such statements are made, they disqualify the person who made them from public debate.

BTW, Henri Grouès, a.k.a. Abbé Pierre, was my mother's cousin... ;-)

"Ce qui vient au monde pour ne rien troubler ne mérite ni égards ni patience." René Char

by Melanchthon on Tue Jun 8th, 2010 at 07:56:50 AM EST
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Sweeping (and insulting) generalisations are the spice of life... and meant to be taken with a grain of salt.

It's true that I don't get out much, but I honestly can't say that I have met with common-or-garden antisemitism except among bourgeois Lyonnais... twenty years ago I found it deeply shocking, these days I just make fun of it.

But I willingly replace "uniformly" with "often", OK? ;o)  

I have undoubtedly met non-anti-semitic bourgeois lyonnais, other than your good self... but how to be sure, unless one has actually discussed the subject with them?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Jun 15th, 2010 at 05:15:07 AM EST
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