Thursday, September 02, 2004

Summer Roma Flashback!

Ok, let me first give an award of sorts. I realized today that most of the quotes from students in this blog are from one kid. Larell is the source of the last entry (he who writes his own life story) as well as many of the stories from English last year (go here for a peek at his wisdom).

The kid is a comic genius.

So now I have him in Communications. Today, we begin the Project Citizen process and are talking about community problems. We generate a big list of problems and start to discuss them. Racism makes the list and so the party starts. Larell speaks of racism as though it is an American invention. Remembering my PACE experience this summer, I start to tell the story of our two Slovakian exchanges that week.

We discussed at length in one session the Roma people and the struggle they faced as a minority status. We found ourselves hearing a somewhat racist rant from our Slovakian friend Erick. He tells us that if we went to a Roma village at night, we would be raped and that some Roma kids are so behind that when they begin school, they cannot even use stairs (go ahead, try to picture it)! We wrote Haiku...

Irony defined:
The Roma use typewriters,
But they can't use stairs.

OK, back to class today. I tell the class an abbreviated version of this story (minus the haiku) and Larell comes through again.
"Man, if they smart enough to rape you, the can probably figure out stairs!"
I love Larell. In fact, that might be a new TV show, I Love Larell!

So that exchange led me to google "Roma jokes" and I found this blog entry from Nicmoc (it's the first entry dated 6/19/03, somehow I can't get the trackback link for this entry). It is insightful but what strikes me is his closing quote.
I’ll tell you what this country needs. It needs a shit-hot Gypsy hiphop act.
Indeed we do.


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