I woke up this morning and checked my social media feeds. I always find it fascinating to scroll through the local area pages to find out what atrocities we Gypsy and Traveller people may have committed.
“Gypsies pulled on playing field”
“Cash machine was ripped out last night, police need to go check the caravans at …”
“Dodgy kids walking down our street, lock everything up. Think it’s the gyppos”
These are all statements I’ve seen on some on these pages. My own local one in particular, I’ve been called scum, I’ve received inboxes from other members, issuing threats to me and my infant daughter. I’ve also been told I should live next to “these people” before I start justifying their right to life. That’s always an interesting one. My point is usually “I live in this area, I have done for many years. I live in a house, I give to charity, I work full time. I am Gypsy, it’s an ethnicity please stop using that terminology.”
Sorry I’m rambling, but I’m still trying to formulate and organise my thoughts.
When going on said local page on my social media I saw a lovely picture of the gates of Auschwitz, all green grass and sunshine. I saw a lovely tribute to all those lives lost. Comments from the same people who told I’m scum. The same people who sent me a message to say me and my infant daughter didn’t deserve to live!
I saw other posts with the hashtag #Lestweforget that included posts about The amazing Ella Fitzgerald being jailed for singing to a integrated audience. I saw posts about war crimes and other violence’s committed. I even saw a post for the “victims of Covid 19” and I had to stop for a moment. I had to try and decide if I was angry, sad or just apathetic. We have only in the last few years gotten a Roma representative on the Holocaust Memorial Board, no Roma person as been given any Holocaust Restitution payment…
It seems as a nation we have remembered the atrocities for the Holocaust long enough, we have learned enough! We can now use today to talk about other genocides, other terrible inequalities. And even about a virus.
It seems that the huge number of Roma who were LAWFULLY murdered, starved and tortured have been firmly ingrained in the minds and hearts of everyone.
That we as a nation know enough about Hilters manifesto to label Roma criminals, to make sure that everyone mistrusted and blamed them, to ensure that the world didn’t see anything other than a problem to be solved. To make sure that the media portrayed them as less than human. To sway public opinion so that when he came for the Roma, when his laws started to be enacted it would seem perfectly normal.
They were feral.
They were inherently criminals, It was in their DNA
They were subhuman.
They didn’t deserve to live a mobile life, they should all be rounded up and catalogued…..
Priti Patel accused of inciting racial hatred after branding Travellers ‘criminal and violent’
Exclusive: Demands for apology for incendiary remarks – which come after police attacked the labelling of community as ‘inherently criminal’
The Independent 25th September 2020
I presume my apology is lost in the post!