From The New Yorker:
By Adam Gopnik 11:55 A.M.
In their victory on Sunday, the multiple, polyglot Les Bleus acted as the living refutation of one of the least sportsmanlike people on earth, Donald Trump.
… one can add the pleasure of having your favorite sporting team also act as the living refutation to one of the least sportsmanlike people on earth. I am referring, of course, to Donald Trump, whose views on immigration and Europe, loudly brayed out last week on his visit to the U.K., were neatly devastated by the excellence and the teamwork of the diverse French squad.
The French team, now the finest in the world’s most popular sport, is entirely dependent for its greatness on immigration, on the extraordinary things that only a cosmopolitan civilization can achieve.
For example, could the boring white-bread Frenchmen who built Chartres have put on a proper victory riot?
Well, yeah, actually they could. That’s a funny thing about Diversity Worship in 2018. We seem to have hit diminishing marginal returns about actually cool new things that diversity facilitates, such as New Orleans jazz in 1900, and our now down to old-fashioned lowest common denominator mass market things like soccer.
The hybrid nature of the roster is already famous: the great and absurdly entertaining teen-ager Kylian Mbappé, who at various moments seemed to be playing another game at another pace from everyone else, comes from a mixed Algerian and Cameroonian background.
… And, of course, this group is only the latest edition of the multiple, polyglot team that has been so dominant in the past twenty years—exactly since the rise of the immigrant stars, with the great Zidane, whose parents came from Algeria, the greatest of all. It is no accident that the French team got great when it got cosmopolitan and not unfair to say that it got great even in the face of the French suspicion of cosmopolitanism. (The senior Le Pen, like his parallel in America, has often grumbled about the look and the makeup of the beloved national team.) Trump, of course, with his pitiful maunderings about the “great product” that some country—was it Great Britain or the United Kingdom or maybe, uh, England?—was damaging, as it continued “losing its culture” through immigration, showed that he has not the least idea of the actual history of immigration in Europe, either its challenges (which are many) or its triumphs (which are more).
The irony, of course, is that the one other place, after sport, where that kind of cosmopolitanism is actually most essential is commerce. Dating back to the Bronze Age, pluralism, if only of ports, was a precondition of prosperity.
Look how Rotherham would have been missing one element, perhaps the oldest element, of commerce.
— Charles Murray (@charlesmurray) July 16, 2018
Pardon me for being dense, but I fail to see your point. Can you state it explicitly, please?
— Eric Turkheimer (@ent3c) July 16, 2018
In short, The New Yorker is celebrating France’s importing millions of black Africans, with their genetic superiority on average at sports explosiveness, in order to win the World Cup.
Fortunately, there are going to be a lot more black Africans to import, with the U.N. projecting that the population of sub-Saharan Africa will octuple from a half-billion in 1990 to 4 billion in 2100. So at that rate, by the end of this century, France should be winning World Cups every few weeks.
And what could possibly matter more than that?
By the way, one of the funnier bits of Gopnik’s piece is this long-winded New Yorkerish aside:
To the pleasure of seeing a fine team playing well and winning, a pleasure deepened by the many rough bumps that Les Bleus have known along the way—not least the loss in the final of 2006, when a clearly superior French team, rooted in the anchor of Zinedine Zidane and the harpoon of Thierry Henry, lost to an Italian team that took Machiavellian stratagems to victory …
What Gopnik is obliquely referring to with his ethnic stereotype about cunning Italians and their unsporting Machiavellian strategems is how on the eve of the 2006 final between France and Italy, there were identical thinkpieces about the glories of immigration as proven by how the great Zidane was going to lead France to the World Cup title over the Italians the next day.
But that validation of Diversity didn’t actually go through the formality of taking place, because in the final moments of the actual 2006 final, this happened:
Personally, I think the formidable Zidane looks like he must trace some of his ancestry back to a European interloper in North Africa, such as Field-Marshal Rommel, Jean-Marie Le Pen, or Scipio Africanus.
But Zidane’s 2006 fiasco leaves Gopnik, still angry at those underhanded spaghetti-slurpers who tricked his hero Zidane into the stupidest decision in the history of soccer, sputtering ethnic slurs about Italian Machiavellianism.
iSteve commenter Space Ghost notes:
> the Bataclan and Charlie Hebdo massacres are a reminder of how brutal and how cruelly irrational new grievances can become.
I mean, yeah those were kind of tragic but at least France won a couple soccer games!
On a more abstract level, there needs to be preregistration of think pieces, in the same way that soft-sciences are moving toward preregistration of experiments. The problem now is that anyone can come up with a just-so story justification of anything. France won the World Cup? They won because of immigration and therefore immigration is great!
What really needs to happen is, you need to declare *before* the World Cup Final that it is going to be a referendum on immigration. Then, if France wins, you can write your article extolling the virtues of immigration. But if Croatia were to have won, you would have to write an article about how immigration leads to the inability to cooperate, and that homogeneous societies are better.
If Croatia had won, the think pieces would have been not about The Glories of Immigration but about The Glories of Migration.
Seriously. Croatia is not A Nation of Immigrants but A Nation of Emigrants. A number of Croatia’s players grew up in richer countries, but were eligible to play for Croatia due to their Croatian blood. But that would have just been flattened into A Nation of Migrants.