Saturday, 20 February 2010

Armenia police 'in action' against opposition youth activists

Picture of the Day: Yerevan, Armenia, 19 February 2010, 2nd anniversary of presidential 'election'

*source of picture: ANC Youth Wing's Rally © PanARMENIAN Photo / Sedrak Mkrtchyan

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Armenia: Homophobia Hall of Shame

Starting today, there will be a new page on my blog - Armenia: Homophobia Hall of Shame. Any organisation or individual in Armenia and Diaspora that promotes homophobia will be eligible for the entry. Whenever appropriate or available, link will be placed next to the name with the example(s) of hatred.

First entrants to the Hall are Iravunk newspaper and Radio Van. More entries to follow, including based on my past postings.

Relevant reading:

Playing low: Radio Van in Yerevan promotes hatred and homophobia

No, putting individuals or organisations to the Hall of Shame does not bring me pleasure. I wish the Hall is empty or does not exit at all. It won’t be your usual blacklist. That’s not the main purpose. The purpose is to show that hate is wrong. Hate is not cool. Hate should NOT be profitable. And there are always ways out. You just have to want to get out and make efforts to change yourself for better, to free yourself of hate.

If you think of collaborating with or sponsoring an individual or organisation in Armenia and/or Diaspora, use this list as an exclusion criteria.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Failing to engage with broader Armenian community in London

If you read that during his visit to London president Serj Sargsyan have met with the Armenian community, do not take it as a fact. Quite a few Armenians in London were wondering when and where he is going to have a meeting with them. Well, I have to disappoint them. There will be a meeting, of course, but only with selected VIP ones. Why not have a broader meeting? Why not communicate and listen to the voices of those who may not have millions in their bank accounts but may have something valuable to say and contribute?

And this is not just president’s or his entourage’s fault. It is also a failure of (self-proclaimed) ‘leaders of Armenian community’ in London. Some of them are pretty protective of a circle they’ve created, and wary of letting others to challenge, let alone get in or even collaborate with.

There is such a huge potential in Armenians living or residing in Britain. It’s a relatively small but highly successful community.
ARMENIAN immigrants and their descendants are the most successful ethnic group in the country, according to an analysis of “melting pot” Britain.
It is therefore such a shame for not using this potential. And I am not referring here to using it for propaganda purposes or ‘information wars’, but to facilitate Armenia’s democratic transformation. For now, this aim - the most important, in my opinion, aim - does not seem to be high (or at all) on the list of priorities of those in the community who will be meeting president Sargsyan during his visit in London.

If I were to use Twitter hashtag here, it would be #fail.

* I use the word “community” loosely here, meaning not so much a “group” but PEOPLE.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Quote of The Day (in Armenian)

"Մնում է ազգայիններին ու հոգևորականներին իրենց ընտրած ազգային դիրքերից պատասխանել «երբ հայերը միասեռական էին արևմուտքում չգիտեին թե սեքսն ինչ բան ա»: Այսինքն դուրս ա գալիս հակառակը` ով հոմոֆոբ ա` հակահայ ա, ապազգային, որ մերժում ա մեր ազգային արմատները:"

*source: Ankakh weekly. For my brief reflections, see Unzipped: Gay Armenia