If we look at the Roma reality today, what we are faced with is a view of a helpless, hapless people who need to be uplifted by the society at large. Most pictures of Roma are devoid of dignity and depict squalor and hopelessness. I find it as obnoxious as pornography and it reflects what I call poverty porn. However, this depiction belies the historic reality of Roma. By that I mean that if you look at Roma, they have been living among foreign cultures for at least 500 years. Throughout these five centuries they have been oppressed and abused. They have never had any sustained support or solidarity from anyone, yet they survive. They survived pogroms in every country in which they live.
Michael Simmons is an international human rights activist who has been working in peace & justice activities for over 40 years. From his early organizing activities in the African American Civil Rights movement, to anti-war and nuclear non-proliferation movements, to advocacy on behalf of women & Roma in Europe, Michael has been at the forefront of social justice and social change organizing in wide variety of contexts and issues. For more information, please check the following link: http://raday.blogs.com/michael/aboutmichael.html