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France :: Vive la Difference

France has always been chic, but lately it's the country du jour! As if playing host to the Cannes Film Festival and the French Open aren't enough, France now looks set to be the birth country of the Brangelina twins! We have the 411 on the "it" country of the moment.

Geography

France is located in Western Europe to the south-east of the United Kingdom, west of Italy and Germany, and north-east of Spain. The country covers 211,209 square miles (547,030 square kilometers) and approximately 64 million people call the nation home. The capital (and largest city) is Paris, which is home to more than two million people. And, in case you couldn't guess, the national language is French.

A (Very) Brief History

The earliest humans in France date back way before the croissant was invented - about 50, 000 years. Before it was known as France, a country called Gaul occupied approximately the same place. Gaul was conquered by Rome in the first century BCE, which led to the Gauls adopting the Roman language and culture. Around 400 AD, Germanic tribes known as Franks began entering Gaul, which is where France derived its modern name.

In the year 843, the Treaty of Verdun created a territory called Western Francia, which was the precursor to modern France. Several noble families ruled France until the monarchy was overthrown during the French Revolution in 1798 (a war that was the basis for the film Marie Antoinette). About 10 years after the revolution, a guy named Napoleon Bonaparte seized control of France, declaring himself the Emperor of France. He waged several wars and conquered a good portion of Europe before being defeated at the Battle of Waterloo.

France suffered huge losses in the First World War, despite being on the winning side, and was seized by the Nazis during World War II. The country was eventually liberated in a joint effort of the United States, United Kingdom and Canada in 1944. In more modern times, France has been one of the leading countries pushing the EU monetary union. It has both a president (Nicolas Sarkozy) and a prime minister (François Fillon).

Did You Know?

  • The Statue of Liberty is French. It was made in France and given to the United States as a gift.
  • The bikini was invented in France in 1946.
  • Jeans were invented in France in a place called Nîmes. The word "denim" comes from "de Nîmes".
  • The Eiffel Tower was built between 1887 and 1889 for the 1888 World Fair. It was intended to only stand in Paris for 20 years, but it has been there for more than 120.
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Fries-poll

Have You Ever Called French Fries 'Freedom Fries'?

  • No. That is the stupidest thing ever.
  • Yeah, that's what I always call them.
  • Only once, but I swear I was joking!
  • Huh? Why would I do that?

Random In The Forums

rainbowpoptart
"AlphaT" wrote:Let's get Trumping. Please don't ever say that again. (turns out that's an actual word. your meaning of it is what makes it.. just, no. don't) "AlphaT" wrote:Underground tunneling? Tunnels are used for high profile items or individuals. If you're shipping hundreds of millions worth of contraband over the border every month, or are smuggling in wanted criminals/terrorists, then you dig a tunnel. And while there is much more to do than build a wall in order to stop the flow of contraband, a border wall would curb the mass majority of illegal immigrants flowing into the United States. .."Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."It's not prohibiting the free exercise of Islam to ban Muslim immigration. The Muslims who would be banned would not be in our country, and thus our Constitution would not apply to them. Essentially, it would prohibit the exercise of their religion about as much as it would prohibit the exercise of any other non-American. Now, if we were to deport Muslims simply for being Muslim, then that would violate their right to free exercise. I figured this was where I was flawed. Congratulations, you win. Would you like a cookie? "AlphaT" wrote:Yes, I saw that meme too. Let's just agree that there's a difference between the head of an international real estate conglomerate worth over 10 billion dollars....and Yeezy. But why would I disagree? Maybe both Trump and West have egos bigger than their mansions, but at least Donald knows what he's doing. Kanye's just a bonehead.
reply 20 minutes
LowkeyEli
LowkeyEli posted in Debating:
His wholesale campaign is a joke. Is it really not that obvious? I don't even think he is qualified to be president. I think it's just a distraction.
reply 28 minutes
Pink_Cool_Girl
He obviously does. 
reply 30 minutes
AlphaT
AlphaT posted in Debating:
Let's get Trumping. "rainbowpoptart" wrote: This is the biggest, of the few, problems I have with Trump's thoughts. Illegal immigrants know they're breaking the law by coming into the country without following our policies; they don't just walk over the border like "Hey I'm in the USA now", they come from underground tunnels. The wall isn't going to do anything expect make Mexico's economy even worse, which is going to make more Mexicans not want to live there anymore, thus meaning more are going to want to come into the U.S, then there are going to be even more illegal immigrants. It isn't going to solve the problem, it's going to add to it.   Underground tunneling? Tunnels are used for high profile items or individuals. If you're shipping hundreds of millions worth of contraband over the border every month, or are smuggling in wanted criminals/terrorists, then you dig a tunnel. And while there is much more to do than build a wall in order to stop the flow of contraband, a border wall would curb the mass majority of illegal immigrants flowing into the United States. "rainbowpoptart" wrote: You forgot to mention that a ban on Muslims, even a temporary one, would be against the First Amendment. (: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." It's not prohibiting the free exercise of Islam to ban Muslim immigration. The Muslims who would be banned would not be in our country, and thus our Constitution would not apply to them. Essentially, it would prohibit the exercise of their religion about as much as it would prohibit the exercise of any other non-American.  Now, if we were to deport Muslims simply for being Muslim, then that would violate their right to free exercise.  "rainbowpoptart" wrote: I sincerely hope this doesn't mean you're going to support Kanye West when he runs? Yes, I saw that meme too. Let's just agree that there's a difference between the head of an international real estate conglomerate worth over 10 billion dollars....and Yeezy.  "rainbowpoptart" wrote: Oh, you know how much the media loves bending and twisting people's words, especially his. You're crazy if you think people are going to stop talking about a privileged white man's disliking of something certain minorities do. (:
reply 41 minutes
Pink_Cool_Girl
Pink_Cool_Girl posted in General:
How are you?
reply about 1 hour