Friday, March 13, 2009

Roma Women

Beautiful Amnesty International ad for Roma awareness. I hope this kind of stuff works. I seriously have some days where I lose faith in this part of the world. Sometimes I wonder, what chance do new immigrants have considering the way the long-standing "minority" groups are already treated? For now, I'm keeping the faith.


BlackGirl said...

Ad campaigns like these are awesome. In small ways they help to counter the large perception of Romas as uneducated social welfare moochers. That said, do you think many Romas have just accepted their lot at the bottom of the social ladder and aren't inclined to prosper? The sentiment I hear around here is that Romas don't want to move into the mainstream.

Camille Acey said...

I think the same as we black folk don't want to be lumped together (for me that is the definition of racism, being by your appearance), we should allow every single Roma to tell their own story. we have a beautiful Roma television program here in Slovenia that I watched the other day and it was very illuminating. There was recently a blood drive in the country and one local Roma young woman-s league got together to donate and on the show they said "We wanted to show everyone that Roma's don't just take, we can also give." and it broke my heart to think these beautiful young girls had been raised in a society where people thought (and still think) them to be worthless moochers. What a burden to carry! And honestly where is the space for them to much into such a "mainstream", even some of the most enlightened people I've spoken to here have disparaging attitudes about them. Shameful.
There is no Roma "hivemind" just as there is certainly no black hive mind. If we all educated ourselves about ourselves and stopped obsessing over others we'd give them just enough breathing space to stand up. As you can see from the video many Roma are shining despite the oppression and whether the individual Roma person decides to be a business man or garbage truck driver, we should give the person RESPECT. Europe is a long and slow time coming on that.

Anonymous said...

i know the roma and sinti have also had their problems here in germany, including being interred in concentration camps during the war.

i was pleasantly surprised to see a young roma girl as a favored contestant of germany's version of 'american idol'. when the girls were asked to come out in bikinis during one of the re-calls, she refused saying that it was against her cultural tradition to show so much skin in public.

it was no problem - she wore an attractive beach dress and wowed the jury with her vocal prowess.

i know the situation in germany can't be compared to the situation in places like hungary, etc., though.

Anonymous said...

"Europe is a long and slow time coming on that"

Kind of true, but I'd be careful of judging the rest of Europe on the basis of your experience in Slovenia, where "some of the most enlightened people I've spoken to here have disparaging attitudes about them" is most certainly my experience as well. It can, at times, be utterly depressing.