What the Dutch describe as ‘typically Moroccan behaviour’ (hassling girls, attacking gays) is a question of macho street culture rather than family origin, says Groningen university researcher Jan Dirk de Jong, who has spent seven years finding out what makes young urban immigrants tick.
Young Koreans in Los Angeles, Chilean gangs in Barcelona, and Pakistanis in Oslo all show the same patterns of behaviour, De Jong tells the paper.
‘It is an Us-and-Them situation,’ he says. ‘And it is always functional to see the police as your enemy and to ignore your own failings if you are in the underclass.’
The solution, says De Jong, must come from all sides. ‘We have to take the decision that everyone who lives here, who grew up here, is a Dutchman. That division between native and immigrant has to go.’
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