The #Idavox Report: Talking Roma Rights and Police Violence in the Czech Republic
Why is Daryle in Facebook Jail?
The Patriot Front is a hate group that is based upon ideologies of neofascism, white supremacy, and white nationalism. They recently made news for vandalizing the George Floyd statues and memorial in Brooklyn and Newark. The Patriot Front has recently staged events in this part of the country and have been met with resistance from ANTIFA. The man who founded Patriot Front was recently arrested in Texas. Daryle advises us to be on the lookout for this dangerous group, as it is currently rising in popularity. He spoke out against the Patriot Front on Facebook recently and was consequently banned from posting for 24 hours.
The #Idavox Report Welcomes Gwendolyn Albert!
Long-time human rights activist Gwendolyn Albert joins us from Czech Republic tonight to talk to Daryle Lamont Jenkins and Christian Perez about the systemic oppression experienced by Romani(Roma) people around the world. Gwendolyn is originally from California but has been living in the Czech Republic on and off for 30 years. During this time, she has witnessed as a resident the events that began the transition to democracy in the country, including the fall of the Berlin Wall. She has also witnessed firsthand repeated dehumanization of Romani people.
Content Warning: Violence, Death
The panel begins by taking a look at horrifying video footage from the Czech Republic of a police violence incident where a police officer is assaulting a Romani man. The incident is undeniably reminiscent of George Floyd’s murder. The video is deeply disturbing, depicting a man in obvious suffering, wailing as he is being crushed by a police officer. The officer was crushing him with a knee to the neck long after he stopped resisting. The man’s name was Stanislav Tomáš.
Gwendolyn shares that she is disheartened that such an incident took place even after the world reacted as it did to the George Floyd incident. There were so many parallels between this case and the George Floyd incident, such as the media latching onto the idea that Tomáš may have been on drugs as fact.
Discrimination Against Romani People
The segregation faced by the Romani people in the Czech Republic is profound. They make up only 2-3% of the general population, yet they face a disproportionately high amount of hate and a severe lack of representation in both media and government. Romani people have been emigrating from the Czech Republic to countries like Ireland and Great Britain where they know that they will be treated better.
What will it take for Roma people to be treated with humanity and dignity? A good first step to begin remedying this situation is awareness. In America, we need to pay attention to the struggles of people in other countries, just as they do for us. To start, for example, more people should follow Romani media sources such as http://www.romea.cz/en, which chronicles important aspects of Romani life, struggles, and activism. The Roma people are in need of solidarity. We need to start forming an international coalition against hate. We have to step up here and now and show these oppressors that hate has consequences.
-Leah Giannantonio, for the Revolution Radio Network
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