Racisme et protection sociale

Deux facteurs d'ordre démographique minent les systèmes de protection sociale d'Europe continentale. L'un est le vieillissement de la population et l'autre l'arrivée massive d'immigrés en provenance des pays qui vont accéder prochainement à l'Union européenne et d'ailleurs.

Dans un livre récent intitulé Fighting Poverty in the US and Europe: A World of Difference que j'ai écrit avec Edward Glaeser, j'évoque la question de savoir pourquoi le système de protection sociale est tellement plus généreux en Europe qu'aux USA. Une cause majeure en est l'hétérogénéité raciale bien plus importante aux USA qu'en Europe de l'Ouest.

Ainsi, selon une enquête de la World Value Survey [un réseau qui réalise des études sur les changements politiques et socioculturels au niveau international], 60% des Américains pensent que les pauvres sont paresseux, contre seulement 26% des Européens. Il n'est pas surprenant que ceux qui croient cela soient peu favorables à la redistribution des revenus et à la protection sociale. Les enquêtes montrent qu'aux USA, les personnes hostiles aux minorités sont généralement aussi hostiles à la redistribution des richesses et ont moins de compassion envers les plus démunis.

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