What do you say?
What if we gathered all our organizations from around the country and outside of it too and asked the Arts Council of the city of Chicago to move forward with their original plan for installing the Shumirum Monument near to the Oriental Institute on the campus of the University of Chicago.? The new and expanded Assyrian Gallery there will be openning next year...what if our monument was installed by then...even became a part of the ceremony?
Twice the city offered to pay the costs for installation and a pedestal, and twice they took the offer back due to John's nonsense. There was even going to be a media campaign to announce the unveiling. They just might do it a third time. Michael Lash, the Director, told me the Oriental Institute is his favorite museum and he and his staff have shown great respect for our Heritage. Indeed it was an honor they extended to all of us...I am nothing if not an Assyrian, I represented you all in my dealings with them and I promise you I brought no dishonor to our name.
What would it take? A unified stand, leters...a petition campaign via e-mail with a simple statement..."please move forward with plans to install our monument at the intended site". Our organizations could join in as well as non-Asyrians.
Tony Khoshaba once offered to spearhead a grass roots campaign in Chicago. Anyone interested...or should the monument just sit there and gather dust, as we are in danger of doing? I'm certain our Chaldean family in Detroit, working to have their monument as well, would support us in this, and they have a powerful voice in that region.
Our Queen Shumirum once led our army in defense of her people, though she was wounded yet she triumphed. The statue of her has also been wounded, but even with all of that, she could still prove to be a savior in some small way, protecting us thousands of years later from disintegrating completely. A Monument is not just a huge chunk of metal...it has to have a spirit and a special meaning. I think the way things have played out for the monument, and us so far...gives it just this potential of doing something for our spirits. The monument HAS a special meaning, especially after all its gone through.
Months ago when I first posted about it, I was told it was purely a financial deal between John Nimrod and I. Now, after all that has transpired, does anyone believe that really? IS this just an issue for me...or is it of concern to us all, whether we live in Chicago or not...like me or hate me?
I am moving on with my life to other places other projects entirely, the monument can remain in storage or be placed in some obscure corner...I've done all I humanly can to get it installed and have been frustrated by overinflated egos, outright lies, threats, intimidation and silence for years now.
There was never any "profit" in these monuments. Their only purpose was to serve as rallying points for our people, our young ones, those not even born yet, especially. We have to begin to make our presence in this country known. There can be no better way, all things considered, than a bronze public monument,informative and at the same time aesthetically pleasing...giving proof to the fact that we have survived all these centuries and are finally in the position to understand the value of staking out a place for this unique Heritage we share, regardless of what religion we pay homage to.
What do YOU say?
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