As picked up on Le Monde, a statement made by Nicolas Sarkozy during a March interview with "Philosophie Magazine" is raising more than a few eyebrows on the anti-Sarkozy blogosphere.
"I would incline, for my part, to think that one is born a paedophile, and it is besides a problem which we cannot look after this pathology. There are thousand two hundreds or thousand three hundred young people who commit suicide in France each year, it is not because their parents are badly occupied! But because, genetically, they had a brittleness, a preliminary pain. Take the smokers: some develop a cancer, others not. The first have a hereditary physiological weakness. The circumstances do not affect all, the part that is innate is immense."
Although he may be technically correct that genes play a large role in certain kinds of cancers, depressions, etc, the off the cuff remarks have generated strong criticism amongst some scientists, and also right-wing challenger Jean-Marie Le Pen. One geneticist's principal argument was that no gene can lead to such complicated behavior such as suicide. Le Pen, on the other hand, was more worried about personal responsability.
"If we are inhabited by genes which are in themselves crime-genes, that means that we do not have the responsibility for what we do. He had to be mistaken, it is not possible."