The video is from this story, posted in September.
The fact that public thoroughfares are being blocked for Muslim prayer is almost a side issue in this story, which instead takes the opportunity to accuse Sarkozy of a “lurch to the right,” fixating on the farthest of far-right politicians it can identify. But this should not be a left-right issue, and it would not be, were a politically fashionable group not at its center.
If, hypothetically, followers of some other prophet were blocking Paris streets to recite prescribed prayers to their one, true god, Rick, would this behavior be tolerated of the Rickyites for a moment? Possibly once, or twice, but then the novelty would wear off, and it would be time to move along.
But no, to protest conduct on the part of Muslims that would not be tolerated of other groups is to be branded a member of the “far-right,” which, as always, is mainstream media-speak for “scares children, barks at other people’s dogs, and makes Cratchit work on Christmas.”
“Nicolas Sarkozy to target Muslim prayers,” by Matthew Campbell for The Australian, December 20 (thanks to Captain Nemo):
NICOLAS Sarkozy will take another lurch to the Right with a speech on New Year’s Eve calling Muslim prayers in the street “unacceptable”.
After his expulsions of gypsies and a crackdown on immigrant crime, the French President will warn that the overflow of Muslim faithful on to the streets at prayer time when mosques are packed to capacity risks undermining the French secular tradition separating state and religion.
He will doubtless be accused of pandering to the far Right: the issue of Muslim prayers in the street has been brought to the fore by Marine Le Pen, the charismatic new figurehead of the National Front, who compared it to the wartime occupation of France.
Her words provoked uproar on the Left, whose commentators took them as evidence that far from being the gentler face of the far Right, Ms Le Pen, 42, is no different from Jean-Marie, 82, her father, who has been accused of racism and Holocaust denial.
The implication is that objecting to Muslim prayers blocking the streets automatically places one in league with racists and Holocaust deniers.
It does not. And those in power who stand idly by as the streets are blocked should be invited to commute to and from and live in the affected communities, where, as described in the video above, residents cannot enter or leave their homes until prayers are over.
According to his aide, Mr Sarkozy agrees with the junior Le Pen that the street cannot be allowed to become “an extension of the mosque” as it does in some parts of Paris, which are closed to traffic because of the overflow of the faithful. Local authorities have declined to intervene, despite public complaints, because they are afraid of sparking riots.…