"My country is the world, and my religion is to do good" - Ralph Waldo Emerson

We are just a normal family...

...says 15-year-old mother of two who had her fist child at age 12. She either does not know who the father is of either of her children or does not want to disclose the name or names.

They go on about Gypsy child marriages and while personally I think that our People should discard the idea of child marriages when one sees Gohja like that then how can they even dare to talk. At least Gypsy girls do not get pregnant at twelve, generally, without knowing who the father of the child is. If a 12-year-old Gypsy girl would get pregnant then she would be a bride and would have a husband and all that. But it is Gypsies who are always portrayed as being in the wrong and without morals. Without wishing to sound pompous things like that do not happen amongst our People and it is therefore no wonder that the Gypsy People regard non-Gypsies, which they call Gohja, as being less then them. We only need to look around us in general and see the deterioration of Gohja society - not that that leaves Gypsy society unaffected; far from it - with respect for anyone older having gone out of the window, and I have to admit that the influence from the outside society is having and adverse effect also on the Romani-Gypsy, with all the other problems going on to see that there is nothing to aspire to for Gypsies in Gohja society and that we must remain apart, as a People and Nation separate.

While we, as a People, will need to learn to integrate we must never allow ourselves to become like them by assimilating. Too many of ours in some countries are, unfortunately, headed that way however. We must show the Gohja that we are proud of what we are and who we are and that we are different to them and showing them the better ways of our Culture.

© M V Smith, March 2006

The Vatican and the Roma politician

In an article in the Dzeno Association website yet again an author, in this instance Valeriu Nicolae, is trying to tell the world that the word "Gypsy" is basically a dirty and politically incorrect word for the Romani People, who he insists, like so many other professional Roma politicians, to lump together into "Roma", which they are not. While those outside the realm of the Roma, such as Sinti and others, wish not to be called Roma and rather, in some places, refer to themselves as Cygany, for instance, or as Gypsies, thereby making it acceptable terms. Why do some Roma politicians think that they have to lord it over the People with their paternalistic attitudes, not unlike the Holy See in Rome, and in many aspects even worse. Not all Romani are Roma; is that so difficult to understand and yes, and maybe the author has not noticed, in many parts of Western Europe, the Gypsy People, are still quite a mobile population.

While I rather do disagree with the term of the Vatican that states "Gypsies are also known as Roma…" because this, yet again, makes the false claims that all Gypsies, all Romani, are Roma, I do not disagree one bit with the use of the all-embracing title of "Gypsy" or "Gypsies" for our People. I also have to say that while I am not very keen on the idea of the Vatican and the Roman Church having a evangelization drive aimed at the Gypsy People in Europe, I rather have the Catholic Church involve themselves in such a manner than the holy roller kind of tent missions and the like who destroy the very Culture and fabric of our Society by targeting our People.

However, the reason our People fall prey to such missions is the fact that we have lost the cohesion of society amongst us and the mutual support "organizations" (though they never were organizations per se) and it is for those reasons more than anything that so many of our People fall into the trap of the so-called Christian faith and believe themselves to be saved and born-again.

How, by the way, dare Roma politicians, like the author of the article on the Dzeno Association website, entitled "International Herald Tribune and Vatican 's paternalistic blunder" to claim that the term Gypsy has a strong pejorative connotation for Roma and non-Roma and is considered as politically incorrect when he, I am sure, has never asked the People themselves, and definitely not those that tare NOT of the Roma how they feel about it. The older Romanichals have used Gypsy always and most Romani in the USA, except maybe some of the Kalderash and such, also refer to themselves, especially when dealing with outsiders and being truthful as "Gypsy". So does the author of this article and he does it with pride. The term Gypsy is neutral in the same way as is the term Zigeuner and many German Sinti have no problem either with the latter if they'd be honest. In fact the same can be said for the N-word that, as politically incorrect as it is supposedly, the author of the article in the Dzeno pages uses. The American Blacks use it to address each other with. It is amazing though that, as soon as it is used by someone else, it immediately becomes a racist slur. But that is neither here nor there. The fact is that many of the People have no problem being called, as long as it is not with racists or other kind of undertones, Gypsy or Zigeuner. Also the spurious claims of the word "Zigeuner" do not hold any water whatsoever, whatever new ideas some "exerts" in Romani Studies wish to come up with. While, yes, we do know, Gypsy is derived from Egyptians it does not make it a word like the "N-word" the writer of the article used. It has not been assumed that Gypsies can from Egypt; it has something to do with the fact that our People upon being noticed in Europe denoted as their origins, or better as the place whence they had come, regardless of whether they may have called it "Little Egypt". That is why in English they were called "Egyptians" and then "Gyptians" and later simply "Gypsies" and they themselves ascribed this mane to themselves when talking amongst others not of their own groups or when talking to outsiders, while amongst themselves they may have used "Kale" or being "Black Bloods" or indeed, whence the term "Romanichal" comes, "Romane Chave" which, when spoken, to the untrained ear, especially with the "e" in chave being often silent and the "v" becoming a "u" sound at times, with the word then, reading "chau", sounding like "Romanichal". However, when using the English language the words "Gypsy" invariable has been used, while some, after interference from some self-styled experts came to use the term "Traveller" for themselves. The vast majority of the Romani in the UK and those hailing from the British Isles do not have problems with the word Gypsy so, therefore, dear Roma politicians and "experts", do not tell the world that we have. None of us have elected or appointed any of you to be our representatives therefore do not claim to be thus. Given a chance I am rather sure that the People can speak for themselves and do not need people whose only interest has been and still is not the People but how much political mileage they can get out of the People.

It also must be said that it makes no difference what word is being used when used in the wrong attitude. We now see the use of "Sinti & Roma" more and more when news media and police reports deal with supposedly Gypsy perpetrators of crimes, real or imagined (not the crimes but the ethnicity of the perpetrators) with statements such as "an olive complexion, as found amongst the peoples of the Sinti and Roma", and such like. The tone makes the music and in more ways than one. The words are all neutral, whether they are Gypsy, Zigeuner, Sinti & Roma, but the way they are being used and the context in which they are used are not.

I am Gypsy and proud of it!

© M V Smith, March 2006

World Gypsy Union - a new concept

The beginning of March 2006 saw the foundations being laid for the first ever organization for the worldwide Gypsy People with an individual membership policy and ensuing out of this the World Gypsy Union was born.

Now, for the first time in the history of their own political organizations do the Gypsy People of the world have a body where the ordinary grassroots Rom and Romni, and also the Chavale as well, have a voice, and a say, as individuals, by being represented directly by being members, instead of by spokespeople of this or that national Gypsy or Traveller organization insisting on speaking on their behalf whether or not they, the People, have had any say in the appointment as such a spokespeople.

The World Gypsy Union (WGU) will unite the Gypsies of the world as individuals, a prerequisite for nationhood, giving them a worldwide body where they can have a voice and a say where before they have had none.

The World Gypsy Union welcomes into membership all those that are ethnic Gypsies, including, amongst others, the Jenisch and the Domari; so often neglected by the other political Gypsy organizations (they do not like the name Gypsy though; those organizations, that is) but membership is not open, and no excuses are made for this, to people such as the Irish Travellers and others who are of a different culture entirely; most Irish Travellers being nothing else than Irish Gohja in trailers and are not ethnically Gypsy whatsoever.

The World Gypsy Union does not, unlike, as apparently some other Gypsy organizations do, play at being a Racial Hygiene Institute, and the WGU, therefore, accepts into membership all that do have a true Gypsy Bloodline regardless whether this comes from the father's or the mother's side as Blood is regarded to be thicker than water and if it was "good enough" for a small amount of Gypsy Blood to have one under the Nazis sentenced to the concentration camps and eventual death then it must be good enough for a political and cultural organization for the People. A didikai or a poshrat are as welcome as a member of the WGU as is the full-blooded Gypsy.

For further information contact:


O NEVO DROM Blog - changes

Dear Readers,

Well, it's been a while. Some may have noticed that there has not been much updating happening with news and views as there used to be. This is due to two things. One that there has not been much interesting Gypsy news around really and two that I am moving the news and views from media sources and the like to our yahoo groups companion.
Therefore, if you wish to continue to receive and read all those news and views from the Gypsy world with comments by yours truly I urge you to subscribe to the O NEVO DROM @ yahoo groups. Please click on the box on the left hand side column and you will be taken to the correct area.
The O NEVO DROM Blog will from now on, in the same way as the ROMANI FIRST Blog, feature only articles written by us of the editorial staff. I believe this will give you all a much better service and it will allow me (and the other writers) to actually write informative articles for you all to read.

Veshengro (Editor-in-Chief)