La Dividida Cámara Racial de Europa

Una característica común de la derecha extrema de Europa es su racismo y su uso del tema de la inmigración como fuerza política. La Lega Nord de Italia, el Vlaams Blok de Holanda, los partidarios del Frente Nacional de Le Pen en Francia, son ejemplos de partidos o movimientos formados a partir del tema común de la aversión a los inmigrantes y la promoción de políticas simplistas para controlarlos. Aunque los individuos como Jorg Haidar y Jean Marie Le Pen vienen y (nunca demasiado pronto) van, la cuestión de la raza no desaparecerá de la política europea en ningún momento cercano.

La población cada vez más vieja en casa y las fronteras más abiertas que nunca, implican una fragmentación racial en los países europeos. Los principales partidos de centro izquierda y centro derecha se han enfrentado a ese prospecto escondiendo la cabeza en la tierra, abrigando esperanzas vanas de que el problema desaparezca. No lo hará, como claramente muestra la historia racial de Estados Unidos (EEUU). Las relaciones raciales en EEUU han estado en el centro del debate político por décadas, y todavía están, hasta el punto de que las grietas raciales son tan importantes como el ingreso, si no más, como determinantes de las preferencias y actitudes políticas.

El primer paso para enfrentar la política racial es entender el origen y las consecuencias de la animosidad racial, incluso si implica develar verdades desagradables. Eso es precisamente lo que una gran cantidad de investigación en economía, sociología, psicología y ciencias políticas ha hecho para EEUU. Esa investigación muestra que las personas de distinta raza confían mucho menos unos en otros; los blancos están menos dispuestos a apoyar el gasto en bienestar porque se considera que favorece a las minorías; las comunidades más fragmentadas racialmente tienen gobiernos menos eficientes, más corrupción y padrinazgo, más crimen y menos bienes públicos productivos por cada dólar de impuestos.

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