Wanted: François Hollande, a danger for Catholicism

2 Mar

While some object him the lack of firmness, Institut Civitas sees the left-wing French candidate at the 2012 presidential elections as an important threat to Catholicism.

Posters/stickers of Institut Civitas

Posters/stickers of Institut Civitas










Attention, this candidate is harmful for the Catholics! (Attention, candidate nuisible aux Catholiques in French). Two different pictures of the French socialist presidential candidate, a provocative slogan on posters and stickers, sold for three or six euros per ten pieces, depending on their size.

Institut Civitas, a conservative organisation based on the Catholic Church doctrines trying to « re-establish the empire of Christ in the nations of the world, in particular in the French society », attacked Francois Hollande on their web page, claiming that he wants to legalize the homosexual marriage and the child adoption for homosexual couples, legalize euthanasia and constitutionalize the separation between the Church and the State.

At the beginning of the year, Institut invited itself in the French presidential campaign, sending to all the potential candidates a questionnaire to find out more about their positions on faith, family values and education. Even though Francois Hollande never responded directly to these questions, Institut Civitas, decrypted his political speech in Bourget, concluding that  “even though we will not indicate whom should the Catholics vote for, we can say whom you should not vote for”.

However, although in his 60 proposals the candidate mentions the candidate mentions the Church and State separation as well as the right to marriage and child adoption for homosexual couples, Francois Hollande’s position on the euthanasia isn’t clear yet . In the recent interview for the French left-wing magazine Marianne, he even said that he is opposed to that practice.



Go tantric, vote rasta!

2 Mar

Long dreadlocked hair and a brand new on-line album that all reggae sound lovers can download. Baba Chihabi is a 32-year old presidential aspirant at the 2012 French presidential elections.
In Baba’s world tantrism would be a state religion, meditation taught in schools and people would work less to live better.

“I don’t believe that French are ready for my ideas. I don’t believe the world is ready for my ideas right now, maybe in 30 or 50 years they will be.”

In his presidential proposals, there is no place for budget restrictions, financial transactions or credit rating agencies, hot issues of every presidential race in this time of global economic crisis.Ever since Baba first decided to become a presidential candidate – back in 2003, after discussing French politics with his fellow students – his proposals are based on resource sharing (“I believe in resource sharing, so that everyone have food, house, garden, not depending on pharmaceutical or food industries”), and meditation that should be « taught in schools, prisons and hospitals ».

The beliefs of the Rasta president have roots in Baha’i Faith as well as the tantrism that he considers the origin of all religions. « I am against the secularism; I might be the only candidate in France who thinks that way. I think that everyone has to be allowed to express his faith. However, the tantrism is the origin of religions. » The tantrism as a state religion is listed as the first among his 69 presidential proposals, first but not the last one underpinning the sensual dimension of Rasta’s presidential project. He would also legalize the polygamy and polyandry, establish the National Agency of Eroticism and reform the society to become the society of pleasure and leisure. “One of my slogans is 100% unemployment. I want to free people from industrial enslavement and give them pleasure in their life. That’s why I support Cindy Lee, the member of the Pleasure Party who wants to bring pleasure to people’s lives. “

When he wants to share his ideas, Baba doesn’t only rely on his blog or You Tube channel. For him, campaigning means singing.  When he comes to the French capital to sing in the metro, nobody is indifferent.  “Some people are interested, they ask me questions about my campaign and they congratulate me, others hate it, they insult me or, in the worst case, they want to fight me.” Other presidential candidates ignore Baba’s existence. Even though on his YouTube channel, he launched an open invitation to all the presidential candidates to do a video with him, nobody ever got back to him.  “Even the craziest candidates didn’t accept my invitation. Even if they are sure they will lose, they are afraid to appear in my video.”

Mayors too seem to be afraid, or maybe just not in interested in his proposals. Until now, rasta president didn’t’ get any of 500 mayor endorsements needed to become the official presidential candidate. Mothers seem to like him more: when he realized that no mayor would accord him his endorsement, Baba invited the mothers (in French mayor, « maire », and mother « mère » are pronounced in the same way) to sign a petition to support him. So far 27 mothers signed the on line petition. 

And he is ready to wait for the world to be ready for him. “My plan is to record more CDs, do more videos and go to India where I will learn more about meditation and yoga. In 2017, I intend to run for president again.”

Considering the stress that presidential campaign, as well as the five year mandate can provoke, maybe some other candidats should consider joining him.

Islamic veil fines? He’ll pay them!

17 Feb

Rachid Nekkaz

So far he paid 31 burka and niqab fines.  Rachid Nekkaz, a wealthy French businessmen, set up a million euro fund in 2010 to pay fines for women who choose to wear the full Islamic veil in countries banning it. Currently he supports Kenza Drider, a niqab veiled candidate for the 2012 presidential elections and he is trying to purchase the mayors’ signatures ( in France one needs 500 mayors’ signatures in ordrer to become an official presidential candidate).

1. Why have you decided to support Kenza Drider in her bid for president?

2. What is your opinion on secularism? 

Rachid Nekkaz showing the first two signatures he obtained

3. In January of 2012 you called the French mayors to sell their signatures to you for 646,25 € each, the equivalent of one month mayor’s allowances (in the community with less than 500 residents). How did you come up with that idea?

Muslim headscarves unveiled

17 Feb

France was the first European country to ban the full-face Muslim veils in public places. But, which are exactly the veils covering the face?
A short slideshow through the most popular Muslim headscarves.

Click on the http://files.photosnack.com/iframe/embed.html?hash=pu95oif9&bgcolor=EEEEEE&wmode=window&t=1329471591 to open the slideshow.

2012 Secularism proposals

10 Feb

What do six French presidential candidates top-rated in opinion polls have to say on the secularism? Let’s take a look at the extracts from their proposals.


Halal, the meat of discord in Marine le Pen’s party

10 Feb

Secularism diet by Marine le Pen:  halal meat off the menu.  Yet, the biggest provider of the halal poultry in Pas-de-Calais, northern region of France, is one National Front regional councillor.

In the beginning of 2010, Marine le Pen gave up on hamburgers. At least on those made in Quick, the fast-food chain that decided to serve only Halal meat hamburgers in some of their outlets.

The president of the far-right party Front National declared that it was “the discrimination of all non-Muslim customers (…) that the “halalburgers” amounted to an “Islamic tax” on French consumers”.

In 2011 the journalist Jean-Baptiste Malet publishes the book Derriere des lignes du Front (Behind the Front lines), the result of six month reporting within the National front party. Investigating behind the Front lines, he found the biggest provider of halal poultry in the region.

The 75 years old  Paul Lamoitier, National front regional councillor,  sells some thirty tons of halal meat to the regional butchers although for his party animals slaughtered in the name of Allah, using halal methods, aren’t welcome on the supermarket shelves and on the restaurant tables.

Marine le Pen’s cabinet chief claimed that “he doesn’t see the connection between the Paul Lamoitier’s situation and the Quick halal affair”.  Still, in her campaign proposal, Le Pen clearly positions herself against the “religious communitarianism.”  Should Paul Lamoitier look for another job or another political party?

Occupy theatre: anti-catholicophobic movement

3 Feb

Evolution of secularism

3 Feb
When did it start and what are the most important dates
of the French laïcité?


27 Jan


Separation of Church and the state that allows the freedom of tought, not privilegizing one religion over the other. Or infringement on individual right to religious expression?

The French state  secularism has a long tradition: the word laïcité has been used from the end of the XIX century to mark the separation of public institutions from the influence of the Catholic Curch.  Today, the context covers also other religious movements.

A core concept of the French constitution, laïcité is still widely debated and contested.  Hence, one of the major themes of French presidential elections.

What are the issues related to the secularism and how the candidates will deal with them? How are the religious institutions seeing the candidats? Did multiculturalism fail in France and could secularism fail too?

This blog aims to discover and analyze the secularism aspect of the 2012 French presidential elections. At the same time, it is  a laboratory for  an interactive multimedia approach. So I’ll keep playing with web tools and you keep following!