silence will not protect you
words from poet, warrior audre lorde
I was going to die, sooner or later, whether or not I had even spoken myself. My silences had not protected me. Your silences will not protect you…. What are the words you do not yet have? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own, until you will sicken and die of them, still in silence? We have been socialized to respect fear more than our own need for language.” I began to ask each time: “What’s the worst that could happen to me if I tell this truth?” Unlike women in other countries, our breaking silence is unlikely to have us jailed, “disappeared” or run off the road at night. Our speaking out will irritate some people, get us called bitchy or hypersensitive and disrupt some dinner parties. And then our speaking out will permit other women to speak, until laws are changed and lives are saved and the world is altered forever. Next time, ask: What’s the worst that will happen? Then push yourself a little further than you dare. Once you start to speak, people will yell at you. They will interrupt you, put you down and suggest it’s personal. And the world won’t end. And the speaking will get easier and easier. And you will find you have fallen in love with your own vision, which you may never have realized you had. And you will lose some friends and lovers, and realize you don’t miss them. And new ones will find you and cherish you. And you will still flirt and paint your nails, dress up and party, because, as I think Emma Goldman said, “If I can’t dance, I don’t want to be part of your revolution.” And at last you’ll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth. And that is not speaking.
Czech party drafts petition against discrimination of the majority by the “Gypsy minority”
News server iDNES.cz reports that one of the parties in the local municipal coalition governing Ústí nad Labem, the Party of Health, Sport and Prosperity (Strana Zdraví Sportu Prosperity - SZSP), has drafted a petition demanding an immediate end to the “discrimination of majority-society members” by the “Gypsy minority”. Political scientists say the party is reaching out to its voters through what are rather extremist practices and statements.
The title of the petition is: “Petition for an immediate end to the moral, physical and financial discrimination of all who uphold the laws and work by inadaptable population groups, in particular the Gypsy minority.” “We have called the state of affairs as we see it. This is our proposal for solving it,” party chair Zdeněk Kubec told iDNES.cz.
In the petition text, the party demands, among other things, the introduction of laws that will take strong action to reduce crime. The text also demands the state stop giving advantages to the “Gypsy minority” and the abolition of state support for nonprofit organizations that are “doing a brilliant business in privileging the Gypsy minority.”
The petition’s introduction also includes the following statement: “We are not extremists, we are not racists, we are educated people and athletes.” However, Miroslav Mareš of Masaryk University in Brno says that to a certain extent, parties that make such statements are encroaching on the dominant area of traditional right-wing extremists’ activities. Local civil rights activist Miroslav Brož says that “mainstream politicians are legitimizing fascist opinions in society.”
This is not the first time that a local politician in the north of Bohemia has used such vocabulary recently. The Vice-Mayor of Cvikov, Jaroslav Švehla, said last Tuesday at a meeting of mayors in the Česká Lípa district that Romani people are not “inadaptable”, but rather have very rapidly adapted to a system that makes it possible to steal, not work, and live on welfare.
“Let’s call things by their real names. The Roma do not want to work, they don’t want to learn, and even if there were a thousand jobs available in the Česká Lípa district, they wouldn’t go to work. For most Roma who have not been working for 20 years, it is the case that this is a trade passed on from father to son,” Švehla told iDNES.cz.
European racism in action. I really don’t see how a minority can discriminate against a majority….