Migrants Arriving in Lampedusa Noborder Network/Flickr

¿Los europeos realmente le tienen miedo a los inmigrantes?

LONDRES – Los partidos de extrema derecha van camino a ganar una predominancia sustancial en la próxima elección del Parlamento Europeo. Aunque los analistas difieren respecto de si esta ola populista está cobrando fuerza, si afectará seriamente la toma de decisiones políticas de la Unión Europea y si se mantendrá en las elecciones nacionales, tienden a coincidir en una cosa por lo menos: el respaldo a esos partidos suele basarse en un sentimiento anti-inmigrante. Sin embargo, las apariencias y la creencia popular pueden engañar.

El populismo adopta muchas formas, y la lógica de su éxito varía de un lugar a otro. Pero el descontento económico (muchas veces asociado con el euro), el enojo ante el establishment político, el renaciente encanto que ejerce el nacionalismo y el sentimiento negativo hacia la UE son todos temas recurrentes, ya sea en el Reino Unido, Francia, Hungría, Italia, Grecia, Holanda o Dinamarca.

También es cierto que los inmigrantes figuran de manera prominente en la retórica populista en toda la UE. Pero sería peligrosamente erróneo concluir que la mera presencia de inmigrantes en Europa alimenta el apoyo a los extremistas. Se podría argumentar con más fuerza que es precisamente la falta de políticas efectivas para administrar la inmigración lo que ha alienado a los votantes europeos.

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