Something that was discussed in my American Public Policy class last semester is finally hitting home with the riots in France. When comparing American labor law with that of European countries, we discussed the dramatic unemployment rates among young people in Europe due, in large part, to the strict laws forbidding termination of workers. If one is lucky enough to find a job – no matter how lazy they may be – he or she cannot be fired. This, in turn, keeps businesses from hiring new workers for fear that they may end up with a bum that won’t do his/her job and have absolutely no way to get rid of this person.

The riots in France started when French leaders enacted a law that would allow businesses to fire workers without cause during a two-year “probationary period.” This, French leaders believe, will encourage hiring, which is, for obvious reasons, lagging in the country. So, when one finds a job (which, it seems, will be easier now that businesses can actually get rid of someone who is not doing a satisfactory job), he or she actually has to work in order to keep it. What a concept…

French young people, however, are, shall we say, “displeased” with the idea of the probationary period and would rather keep the system that is currently in place. You know, the system in which the only way to find a job is if someone dies and wills it to you.

So, French students are afraid that they will be fired (again, if they can find a job) and, I don’t know, still be unemployed? The unemployment rates are astronomical in France, and this law is a way to increase hiring…I can’t quite figure out what the problem is, other than, maybe, French young people are holding out for that job where they don’t have to work and can’t be fired. Maybe that’s it. Not having a job is better than having one at which you’re actually going to have to work…

This, my friends, is the product of Socialism. It was the Socialist regime in France that instituted these “can’t get fired clauses,” leading to an entire generation of people who would rather be unemployed (and, by the way, receive generous welfare benefits) than have a job at which they actually have to work for a living. And when someone finally stands up for change, what do these lazy young people do? They riot. They beat each other up, burn down buildings and clash with police. Why? Because it’s so much easier than working for a living.

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