Friday, September 17, 2010

The Gypsies and Discrimmination

        European Union justice commissioner Viviane Reding wants legal action taken against France for its treatment of its Roma community.She says France's deportation of its Roma, or Gypsies,are similar to injustices committed during World War II.
     Frances president Nicolas Sarkozy has said Roma camps are links to crimes like prostitution and child exploitation and has deported 1000 gypsies back to Romania and Bulgaria .
    She's personally been appalled by a situation where people are being removed from a member state of the European Union just because they belong to an ethnic minority," she said.
   "This is not a minor offence. After 11 years of experience in the commission, I even go further: this is a disgrace."Ms Reding says the European Commission has no choice but to start legal proceedings.

Gypsy in Spain

     Antonio Moreno lives in Madrid. He owns a four-bedroom house with a pool.He works out of his own photo and video studio and he's a Gypsy, one of the 40,000 inhabitants of an illegal settlement on the outskirts of the Spanish capital. If they lived in just about any other European country, Moreno and his neighbors would be the source of tension and controversy.  When it comes to dealing with Gypsies also known as Roma Spain is different. Spain has embraced its Gypsies, giving them rights, celebrating their history and making them feel at home. "Of course there is racism, but it's better here than anywhere else I've seen," Moreno says.

 Gypsies Tramps and Thieves

    Roma or gypsy
  are an  ethnic minority that is difficult to define in any definite, factual terms. Throughout their his­tory, the Roma have been comprised of many different groups of people, absorbing outsiders and other cultures while migrating across con­tinents. This has resulted in creating a patchwork of groups calling themselves Roma, Romani, Romany or Gypsy, each with differing cultures, cus­toms.
    If any one single aspect of their history has been dominant, it must, unfortunately, be that of their persecution, forced assimilation, enslavement, and yes, even genocide carried out against them by the Nazi's. Estimates are that roughly 600,000 Roma were exterminated by the Nazi's, roughly 1/4 to 1/3 of their numbers in all of Europe. Even in Europe in the 1400's  they were confused with muslim invaders from the east. Laws were enacted against them everywhere they went. The history of the response of the countries in which they have lived has been uniformly one of rejection, mistrust, fear,and  banishment.

     It is the Vardos that reminds me of the Gypsies and my mum had one on her mantlepiece for years. That's an ornamental one.When I was doing my blog on Cohen's song Suzanne there was an article that contained the story of Suzanne Verdal and her son, building one to live in on the banks of the St Lawrence River. Then looking for my behind the news story I came across France's discrimatory actions against these people so I chose it as my behind the news story.

Gypsy Dance and Music

 The Flamenco
      Flamenco dancing was the result of several cultures coming together with music, dance. The gypsy people came from India and arrived in the Andalucia region of Spain in the early 1400s. Jews and moors also lived in this area, which was under Arab rule at the time.
    Catholic monarchs forced the gypsies, Jews and moors all to convert to Christianity and give up their traditions and way of living; as a result, these groups took refuge together in mountainous areas that were too dangerous for authorities to visit. This is when gypsy dance began to mix with Arab influences and other Spanish dancing, which eventually became known as flamenco.

 Caravan Of Love 
House martins

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