America is hardly safe from the sort of crisis currently plaguing France. But while the American social model doesn’t promote equality, it does lead to integration. It has not resolved the problems posed by gangs and ghettos. On the other hand, it has reduced the jobless rate for minorities to well below that of France. The capitalist system also encourages minorities to integrate economically and to end their dependence on state handouts by working. Finally, the federal structure of the United States helps contain potentially volatile situations.
It does start promisingly with the above first paragraph It notes that the US has been more successful in integrating minorities and reducing their unemployment rates. Some statistics illustrating that follow in the article.
During the '80s and '90s, the gradual integration of millions of Asian and Latin American immigrants that came seeking work rather than European-style social protection, was also eased by America's long tradition of immigration.
That might seem to be a compliment, or at least a realization that an overbearing Nanny State may lead to problems, but it is the lead-in to the central theme of the article.
In a capitalist country where private initiative is a source of economic growth, the gratuitous destruction of private property is cracked down upon strongly.
Several paragraphs are spent discussing the primacy of American Capitalists defending property. Not only are the police ruthlessly deployed for this purpose, but armed Korean shopkeepers are mentioned during the LA riots. To be fair, the article does note that ghetto residents -- and presumably Citroen owners -- desire such protection. Also, it notes that American police are far more local than the French Gendarmerie, and that contribured greatly to the community accepting the police.
Indeed, the American justice system is "practical" before being "just." Keeping delinquents for years behind bars is considered useful public policy. The prison system is seen as a means of protecting honest citizens, even though it may deprive young people of their liberty for long periods of time - young people who might instead have been rehabilitated ... The crime rate continues its downward trend in the United States. Conservatives attribute this success to the rising prison population. For every 100,000 American residents, 486 are behind bars. 8.4% of black males between the ages of 25 and 29 are incarcerated, compared to a figure of only 1.2% for white males. Sad statistics indeed - though they fail to keep Americans up at night.
Call me crazy, but I don't think I would be bragging about rehabilitated delinquents as France enters its third week of rioting. As for the notion that a lower crime rate should keep American up at night... well, such a bizarre comment can only reflect style trumping substance. The brutish Americans, with their lower crime rates and better model of integration can't possibly be right -- after all, the French invented equality.