Wednesday, August 24, 2005

I know I said I would do an entry on how/why I came to be involved with the Albanian community, and over time become an adopted member of it, but for right now, I thought I would post this press release from AACL (Albanian American Civic League), which was posted a couple of months ago on the ALBANEWS e-mail list. All I can say about it is "it's about time!" I for one am sick and tired of pundits from both the left and right maligning the Albanian people as a PEOPLE, making false statements about them, accusing them of all being fans of Taliban-style Islam, involved in narco-terrorism, Al-Qaida, etc. To anyone who knows the Albanian people, their culture and their history (as I do), such accusations should be laughable. But the problem is that waaaay too many people take these jag-off bandits, er....pandits, er....pundits as being some sort of divinely-inspired source for news and truth. And so it's not very funny at all to me.

I have been saying for YEARS that the Albanian community and it's friends need to stand up to this stuff, and not just say "nobody pays any attention to those people (the pundits)", or "who cares what they say about us?" Because the simple fact is that people *are* paying attention to these self-appointed opinion makers, and we *do* need to care what people are thinking about us. In fact, the latter is just good, common sense. IMO, if you don't stand up for yourself, and give answer to the BS that people might be saying about you, then in a very real way, you are, in effect, by your very silence affirming what they say, or at least that's the way it will likely appear to the average person. As a matter of fact, I proposed on several Albanian related discussion lists nearly 2 years ago that some sort of Albanian Anti-Defamation League was needed to combat the calumnies being spread about the Albanian people (esp. Kosovars). Unfortunately, though there was some interest, nothing came of it at that time.

But anyway, the far lefties and far righties alike are continuing their smears of the Albanian people (watch for a future posting where I profile some of those folks) unabated, and in fact such slanders, if anything, have been increasing as of late, so any sort of educational/defense organisation that is dedicated to putting out a proper, accurate image of the Albanian community is all to the good....even if it is a bit late in coming. I hope that everyone reading this will support Mr. DioGuardi and his co-workers in these efforts.


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