L’étrange mort du multiculturalisme

L’idéologie selon laquelle les peuples de cultures différentes doivent vivre dans des communautés séparées à l’intérieur d’un même pays, ne doivent pas s’intéresser les uns aux autres ni se critiquer entre eux est à la fois fausse et inapplicable. Naturellement, les défenseurs les plus réfléchis du multiculturalisme n’ont jamais imaginé qu’une communauté culturelle puisse ou doive se substituer à une communauté politique. Ils pensaient que tant que chacun respectait la loi, il n’était pas nécessaire que les citoyens aient une seule hiérarchie de valeurs.

L’idéal du multiculturalisme chez soi renvoie à l’idéologie du relativisme culturel à l’étranger, notamment des années 1970 et 1980. Il a furtivement évolué pour devenir une forme de racisme moral selon lequel les Européens blancs méritent la démocratie libérale alors que les peuples de cultures différentes peuvent encore attendre. Les dictateurs africains commettent peut-être des choses horribles, mais ils ne sont pas condamnés par de nombreux intellectuels européens, car la critique implique l’arrogance culturelle.

Les Pays-Bas, où je suis né, ont peut-être été divisés par le débat sur le multiculturalisme plus que tout autre pays. Le meurtre du cinéaste Theo van Gogh il y a deux ans et demi par un assassin islamiste a provoqué un débat déchirant sur la culture nationale, bien établie, de la tolérance et d’accès facile aux demandeurs d’asile.

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