France aggressively prosecutes citizens for "solidarity crimes": feeding and housing migrants


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/01/27/france-aggressively-prosecutes.html


#2

What the actual fuck?

I went to check if France, ironically, has a Good Samaritan law, and found this:

Anyone who fails to render assistance to a person in danger will be found liable before French Courts (civil and criminal liability). The penalty for this offence in criminal courts is imprisonment and a fine (under article 223–6 of the Criminal Code) while in civil courts judges will order payment of pecuniary compensation to the victims.

The photographers at the scene of the fatal car collision of Diana, Princess of Wales, were investigated for violation of the French law of “non-assistance à personne en danger” (deliberately failing to provide assistance to a person in danger), which can be punished by up to 5 years imprisonment and a fine of up to $100,000.

So, it might literally be a crime both to help these people and to not help them.

France, if you’re trying to compel good people to not be good people and help each other when they’re in need, you and I have a very different concept of what “fraternité” means.


#3

My inaction and my silence would make me an accomplice, I do not want to be an accomplice.

At least some French folks still remember their history, even as others are preparing to vote a fascist bigot into power. M. Herrou’s statement, backed up by action, needs to be the prime directive for liberals in countries with right-wing populist regimes.

And yes, quite “shocking” that smugglers somehow manage to keep crossing the border with their human cargoes. In these regimes, the border guards always seem to mysteriously enjoy a lifestyle that their salaries don’t seem capable of supporting. No wonder the ICE union endorsed the grifter-in-chief.

[* not the frequently broken Star Trek kind]


#4

If you jail citizens for acting like decent people you will soon find yourself in short supply of decent people.


#5

You say that as if that’s not the goal here. Right-wing authoritarian regimes are so much easier to run with a compliant and corrupt general population.


#6

Yeah, it’s meant towards other French people only.


#7

Can’t happen here, I’m sure.


#8

No, no; the ‘good samaritan’ stuff only applies to people; so why would it apply in these migrant cases?


#9

They seem to be under the impression that egalité applies more to some than others.


#10

Yeah, it’s totally different from the parable of the good Samaritan.

It’s not like that parable had a man who was travelling down a dangerous road, fell into distress, was overlooked by two supposedly “virtuous” people from his own land, and was helped by a foreigner who had every reason to hate him.

And it’s not like the one who helped someone who was, to him, a foreigner and stranger (at a cost of significant time and expense) was the one who Jesus held up as an example of how to behave.

[Edit: Sorry, I thought it took place in Samaria; edited to clarify.]


#11

I assume that the French right has some locally appropriate equivalent of the American Supply Side Jesus who provides them with better advice than the swarthy middle eastern radical Jesus.


#12

From Tim Kreider:


#13

Pretty much; though I suspect that the French version differs somewhat from the American one(if nothing else; he’d be packing a FAMAS F-1).

Looking through the bios of some of the nastier characters from the French war in Algeria(many of whom went on to spread benevolence and civilization to the hatchetmen of our Latin American freedom buddies); particularly the ones that attempted a coup d’état when the public voted against continuing the war; and organized a fairly prolific terrorist outfit(Organisation armée secrète); the ones with notable religious influence all appear to be Catholics of the “kill them all; God will know his own” school that appears to have taken being reactionary and anti-communist as the two most essential elements of Christianity(the organization predates them; but there’s a bit of overlap with the fine folks at Cité Catholique).

The two could certainly work together; an enthusiasm for violence, substantial ethical flexibility on matters of torture and extrajudicial execution, dislike of commies and liberals, and so on would make for plenty of neutral ground; but America’s Blue-Eyed Jesus is definitely more of a protestant cheerleader of the allegedly ‘free market’; while his French counterpart has no particular idoelogical affinity to free-marketeering; is definitely not protestant(even if his execution of Catholicism makes the pope a trifle nervous at times); and quite probably has a different timeline in mind when being reactionary, since continental Europe just has so much more European history than the US does.

(Incidentally, given that The Pain: When Will it End? was a reaction to the Bush years; Kreider must really, really be having a bad time now, since our current situation makes Bush look like a statesmanly beacon of temperance and decency.)


#14

Here’s his latest essay, titled “I Love America. It’s Americans I Hate.”


#16

Sure, but… driving a kid to the hospital?! A kid who has no one to look after him? That’s a crime?


#17

Not to derail the thread…but I offer the words of the late Mr. Bowie


#18

Hello
This is not the truth, sorry. All the last cases were promoted by french ONG / activist association to promote a debate about this old law, which is a good thing. Nobody went to jail. Nobody paid anything. It was a symbolic debate to open “jurisprudence” and let the law be updated because of this new situation (massive arrival of migrants).


#19

Hello and welcome to Boing Boing Frederick1. Are you claiming that Mr. Herrou and his lawyer are lying or are you saying something else. Because your contention that

doesn’t quite fit with[quote=“doctorow, post:1, topic:93763”]

His van has been confiscated …
[/quote]


#20

I am saying that Herrou and others guys in that situation were waiting for such a situation to debate about this old law and alert french citizens about this inadequate law. Herrou is wellknown as a political activist from the left of the left wing and having a lawsuit was something he wanted to get a tribune and explain his point of view (which I support in that case).
When you write such article, you have to be complete. This is what I have learnt as a journalist. But maybe Boing Boing does not follow the ethical way of writing good information. In that case, do what you want, and be proudly part of the false/incomplete flow of informations done on the Web.


#21

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