Monday, November 11, 2013

Human Waste and the Roma Ghettoisation

 Continuing SOYMB spot-light on the racism against the Roma.

The European Commission has demanded that Slovakia’s second city, Kosice, tear down a wall put up to segregate Roma – the 14th such wall in the country and the eighth built in the last four years.

The 30 metre-long and two-metre high wall went up in Kosice, (a European Capital of Culture), after locals in part of the city complained about that Roma were walking through a non-Roma estate to the town centre, and they were being accused of car theft and anti-social behaviour.

The EC has written to city officials telling them that the wall is a breach of the human rights values the EC holds. It is a sign of how entrenched the exclusion of the minority Roma population is in the country. International rights groups have repeatedly criticised the walls and called for their removal. But successive governments have failed to act on the issue.

Executive director of the European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC) Dezideriu Gergely told IPS: “Walls such as these in Slovakia or anywhere else are not only physical barriers but also psychological dividing lines, an illusory policy of protecting ‘us’ from ‘them’ which hinders any possible social inclusion of Roma in their respective societies. There are 13 other walls in Slovakia. They should all be removed. Governments and local authorities must invest their time and energy into developing inclusive policies that work, and discourage segregation in every manner possible.”

As in many other parts of Eastern Europe, Roma in Slovakia claim that they face systematic discrimination at all levels of society. Some schools in Slovakia and other countries in the region are de facto segregated, with Roma educated in separate classes. Little is done to address the issue of Roma segregation and the condition of the estimated 400,000 Roma across the country – almost a tenth of Slovakia’s population. Local authorities’ approach to inclusion is generally one of apathy or ignorance, rights groups argue. Many Roma live in poverty, sometimes in what are effectively shanty towns or on estates such as those in Kosice near where the new wall was put up. Criminality among such poor communities is an inevitable problem. Kosice is home to a notorious conurbation of housing estates where Roma live. Criminality and anti-social behaviour is commonplace and there are often conflicts between authorities and residents while water, gas and electricity supplies are regularly stopped over claims of non-payment and theft. But in places where walls have been put up there has been no effect on problems with crime, according to local media.

Activists say that the walls are not just ineffective but that they simply reinforce divisions in society and prejudices against the Roma. Laco Oravec of the Bratislava-based anti-racism and human rights advocacy group the Milan Simecka Foundation, told IPS: “These walls are more a symbolic than physical barrier, they won’t stop anyone physically walking through a particular area. But their symbolism is of course very dangerous and negative for the inclusion of the minority population.”

The ERRC’s Gergely told IPS: “These walls are a reflection of the misconceptions about and negative views of Roma. They clearly spell out for Roma that they are unwanted in their own countries…these walls segregate the Roma from the rest of society. In the very near future, Europe will be celebrating the 24th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. This should be marked by taking down dividing walls in Europe that separate Roma from the rest of the community.”

The Kosice municipality was recently criticized by Slovakia’s human rights ombudsman for demolishing a Roma settlement in Kosice under environmental laws, classifying homes as communal waste.


Alexander said...

The Slovak government has already transferred half the Slovak Roma population to the UK.
There are 400,000 Slovak Roma living in Britain, more arrive every day.
It is progressive ethnic cleansing on the part of the EU Slovak authorities and has the explicit support (secret agenda) of the UK government.

ajohnstone said...

Figures are very complicated. The latest is that for ALL Roma in the UK, it is nearly 200,000, that includes apart from Slovakia, Romanian, Bulgarian, Czech and Hungarian Roma.

In Slovakia, 80,627 Roma (1.52% of the citizens of Slovakia), officially declared themselves as such. According to estimates of the urban and communal offices of the state administration from 1989, however, as many as 253,943 Roma live in Slovakia, thus constituting 4.8% of the population. Since these statistics did not include Roma who have a standard of living comparable to that of the majority population, Roma political and cultural activists estimate that the number of Roma in Slovakia is even higher, citing a figure of 350,000 to 400,000 in Slovakia.

But your point about it being a policy of ethnic cleansing by Eastern Europeans is indeed valid. Whether there exists a secret agenda is up for dispute. As the above link argues "Ideally, the problems of the Roma and other minorities should be solved on regional and community levels." Until then, those escaping persecution and seeking a better life should not be hindered in setting up new lives elsewhere.

Often those against immigration have no trouble accepting emigration. If those arriving are a drain on resources then surely those who depart have been equally a drain and should have to repay education and health costs before receiving an exit stamp!!! But to be serious, that is just as a unenforcable policy as stopping even illegal much less permitted immigration.

Alexander said...

The issue of persecution against the Roma in their own countries should not be linked to the assumption of their automatic transfer to Britain, as we have not the will nor the infrastructure to accommodate masses of people fleeing ethnic discrimination in EU Eastern Europe.

Their birthrate, for example, would mean their numbers here would treble every 20 years. We cannot go on ripping up farms and woods to accommodate the world's masses.
The only justice to be sough is in openly campaigning for the rights of Roma to live in their own countries without unfair treatment by their governments.

My opinion is that Britain should cease forthwith paying any money to the EU, and use our net contribution to the EU to finance infrastructure for the Eastern European Roma in their own countries in Eastern Europe.
That would be about £15 million a day. We could do this for a year, financing the institution of schools,, colleges, clinics, hospitals, work-places and farms for the Eastern European Roma in their home villages and towns and cities.

I would agree to this, but not to their mass transfer to Britain.
We have to acknowledge that decisions concerning Britain and immigration need to be dealt with by the British People, as the Country is ours, otherwise we would have an imposed tyranny telling British people off and telling everyone what they must and must not decide.

The fact is, most people here do not want a mas transfer of Eastern Europeans to Britain, regardless whether they are ethnic Slavs, Romany or other. Hence my proposal seems fair, as it would mean doing justice for the Romany - at our expense - but for a good cause that leaves us and the Eastern European Roma satisfied.

ajohnstone said...

Your assumption is that the UK is the first destination for all Roma. That is not true. It is indeed a question for all the EU and in fact the world. Nor is the anti-Roma racism going to be fixed by simple improvements in their infrastructure which may take years to show results. In fact it may exacerbate the persecution if they are perceived as being the recipients of special aid that the other poor of Eastern Europe have no access to. Even in the UK we witness the reaction against any foreign aid. Birth rates are usually high for all immigrants but statistics show they drop in proportion to poverty falls.There is no quick fix that you hope for. There are always scapegoats required for this unjust system to continue...a while back it was single teenage mums jumping the housing list for council flats to hide the fact that affordable rentable property was not being built. Before that we had the political asylum seekers accused of not being genuine but seeking only benefits, disguising the consequences of wars and civil wars around the globe. Then it was the Polish undercutting wages and stealing jobs ...then the disabled who were really all scroungers and can work....don't you see the trend is everybody's elses fault but capitalism's. Next year the media will move on to some other section of the population to blame. Even the rich sometimes get it in the back such blame the recession on bankers greed and not the basic nature of the economic system. I'm sure you can recall yourself how many groups of the population have been treated with headlines as the cause of our unions spring to mind...

D. Alexander said...

The project I've drawn up for helping Roma communities is not discriminatory towards other ethnic groups in Eastern Europe, as I'll outline here:
The Roma speak the same language as the other people in the countries where they live. Many live very close, for example as next-door neighbours, to their Slavic, Hungarian or Romanian co-citizens (Slavic intended as Poles, Slovaks, Bohemians, Moravians. Serbs ...).

Basically, investment in infrastructure such as schools, technical colleges, skill and training facilities, factories. farms, hospitals, clinics and other civic and economic infrastructure would mean relieving the recipient country of some expenses, obviously to the benefit of all the country and its national budget.
It would mean creating local employment, and obviously, the workers doing the construction or renovation work for the buildings that would serve for the above-mentioned infrastructure would be the local people in general, but the emphasis and condition for our investment would be that the Roma communities are expressly INCLUDED in these contracts, that the pupils and doctors and nurses and factory workers and farm employees are not only Roma, but ALSO Roma.

In this sense, it would create a sense of comradeship between the Roma and their nighbours of different culture or ethnic identity, as ALL would benefit, however, WITHOUT discrimination against any one group, for example the Roma.
Such investment, in our case, would be from BRITAIN, not from the EU, hence it would not come about under the "patronage" of this increasingly unpopular and failed system (largely co-responsible for many of the woes you mention in your post).

In fact, I don't mind the idea of Britain contributing voluntarily and without capital gain to people in other countries who need help, so long as the British People agree and are not bullied into it, and that we can say "this is from us because we feel for you".
The recipient EU countries would understand that the money paid to them by other countries actually comes from other people and not from faceless EU commissars.

I do object to our monies being handed to unknown characters employed by the EU and that these faceless characters then hand our money over to who knows who or for God knows what in their own name, as if THEY gave the money that WE paid.

To give you an example, I've never heard one person from Eastern Europe, or one representative of an Eastern European country, ever say "thank you" to Britain, or Germany, or France, or any other Western country, for the net contribution that we pay to the EU every day and which goes in favour of mainly Eastern European countries.

In this sense, they take us for granted, believing the faceless EU commissars are father Christmas and that money here grows on trees. As said, the EU commissars who handle our money are paid (by us), it is not THEIR money; WE paid the taxes that constitute the net contribution going from Britain and Western European countries in favour of Eastern European countries.

We are being told off all the time, whatever we do, is wrong, no matter how much we pay to others, it is not our money anyway and we must shut up, no-one needs to say "thank you" to us, anyone can come here, and when we have taken in millions of people, we just get told off even more.

D. Alexander said...

That said, I still hold to my idea that we give economic aid to Eastern European countries independently of the EU, on condition that the Roma are expressly among the beneficiaries of the investments made with such money and are not excluded. However, it is essential that there be public consensus at home in Britain for any public money being paid to Eastern Europe, as otherwise it would be back to what we already have, namely a tyrannical government doing what it likes and acting as if THEY owned our economy and everything we work and live for, never bothering to include US the People in any decision.

In fact, I believe that the People should be sovereign, that Parliament must NOT give an oath of allegiance to a private family member, and receive from this private family member the "authority" to run the Country, but, on election, should make a pledge to The People of Britain, having received from US the authority to administer to our needs.
Yes, it's time for the private family to become normal people and forget their hereditary titles that only serve to assure tyranny, not Democracy and true Sovereignty.
And it's time that we have the right to democratic referendums within parish and district communities on important local issues, and the right to national referendums on important national issues.

Please believe me, I do resent the ethnic discrimination against the Roma in some Eastern European countries and I resent the undemocratic form of government meted out over us in Britain.

ajohnstone said...

I understand your concern that the UK are paying a "price" for other countries' domestic racist policies and that perhaps a cash substitute may be cheaper on the long run for the UK. Unfortunately the UK is subject to the international treaties it has signed about free movement of EU nationals. If we were not members i think you agree that the persecution of the Roma would then entitle them political refugee status to come under another international law obligation.

Just to change the subject when you say that you resent the British contribution to the EU but are you aware that Norway a non-EU country also contributes financially.

Norway is part of the single market, without being an EU member, via the European Economic Area (EEA) Agreement.

The Agreement provides access to the single market through the inclusion in national law of EU legislation covering goods, services and capital, as well as the free movement of people. In theory, Norway has equal access rights to any EU Member State. Several areas are not covered by the agreement including trade negotiations, agriculture and fisheries policies, justice and home affairs.

EEA members still pay contributions to the EU, with Norway paying 100 EUR per capita, well over half of the UK’s contributions as a full member (180 EUR).

I mention this as many members of the public in favour of pulling out of the EU but still wanting trading agreements don't know about the fee for that.

D. Alexander said...

It's essential to remember that, under international obligations, any country causing their own Roma citizens to flee their country is braking these obligations. They should not be simply allowed to get away with it.
If the British Government is handing over our money to the EU but allowing governments of recipient countries to use the money to build ghetto walls and create a sense of intimidation and discrimination, then the UK Government is complicit.
The Roma have the right to live in their own country where their forefathers have lived for centuries.
Some Eastern EU governments are encouraging the use of phrases such as "the Roma must return to India".
This is shocking racist discrimination, and it is backed up by active discriminatory policies on the part of national and municipal authorities.

I will later answer your point on EU finances, but must go to work now, shift finishes at 11 pm.

D. Alexander said...

The EU is financed by its member states, and also by associated countries such as Norway.
My view is that the whole EU economic system will collapse soon.
Norway can afford its contributions as it is in possession of oil reserves that account for important revenues.
Most EU countries receive more from the EU than they pay in, whereas others, including Britain, are net contributors.

Britain's oil and gas revenues are fractional compared to those of Norway, as they are largely used up and because Britain has a considerably larger population than Norway, hence the effect pro capita of North Sea fuel is considerably lower.
Britain's public debt is enormous, and has passed from £750 billion in 2010 to anything between £1.2 and £1.4 trillion three and a half years later under the current failed Coalition. That which the Government hands out from the National Treasury to the EU, or on foreign aid, and for many other expenses, is simply coming from a combination of taxes, public borrowing and digital money printing (Bank of England).
Although the BoE doesn't give the money directly to the Treasury, it buys up Government bonds from creditors who in turn buy new bonds from the Treasury.

We pay currently anything between £50 and 70 billion a year alone on the interest on the public debt. The Government just borrows more money to make up the difference, adding to the national debt, cuts spending and ignores the urgent reforms that are necessary, such as investing sufficient money into skills and training for local people, including the youth.
Numerous other EU member states are in a similar condition.

It's a mathematical fact that the current economic system will fail tremendously and totally.
The bailouts of EU member states are a proof of this.
The USA is in a similar situation, with the FED printing $40 billion a month in Quantitative Easing and using the money to buy up shares so as to artificially prop up the share markets that otherwise would long ago have crashed.

Col. Ghedafi wanted to mint a golden dinar that would have challenged the fiat currencies. He paid the price.