Posted by panchmaster from pool0588.cvx25-bradley.dialup.earthlink.net (22.214.171.124) on Wednesday, October 16, 2002 at 12:54PM :
It's discouraging...hanging on until the day when I can finally confront these people. Have to be back in December, then again in January...and that's not even for trial yet...just to deal with all the motions and things you have to do before a trial can even be discussed. Of course it doesn't help that I'm suing three thousand Assyrians.
Got to do it. We've been wondering if Assyrians have to act like deranged mice...that the only people who seem to be "reel proudit" to be Assyrians are the illiterate, muddle headed people we see at these functions of ours, running forums and opposition groups...for god's sake... those in charge of changing our National Diapers, but more importantly...KEEPING us in them.
We have lots of bright and talented people, they just aren't insane like I was...they see how things are...and get as far away from anything Assyrian they can.
I wouldn't lift a finger to make an "Assyria" in Iraq...especially if it had to be a trigger finger. All I would ask for is that our Heritage get some equal time and respect...same thing I ask for here in America. And it does...you can see it on the Iraqi site, hell they even had a cross on their homepage...you suppose out boys would put the crescent moon on theirs?...inspite of what these guys have been saying about how Iraq claims Ashurbanipal was an Arab or an Iraqi. Iraqi archaeologists publish books internationally, they direct digs in Iraq that have Western team members...they are hardly so stupid as to make these claims...it is OUR boys stupid enough to make these claims...and the rest of us dumb enough not to challenge them.
Funny thing is that I managed to get just that respect for us here in America where they are EAGER to give it...and guess who stopped it? It wasn't Muslims. These guys talk about democracy like they know what it is. Back in Iraq they lived under tyrannies and they're petty tyrants themselves...you can see it in the way they conduct their "forums". The same sort of tyrants most of them are with their wives ande children.
I wrote on their forums and responded to all challenges and questions and attacks as best I could...often with five and ten of them at a time on different forums. They removed answers of mine so responses to me could stand a chance of appearing half-human. They removed posts and left the answers hanging, then refused to let me answer...trying to make it appear that I was stumped...so they could win the day...sort of like an election in Iraq with only one choice...no dissent allowed.
They were all welcome to carry on their arguments or post challenges at our site but they disdained to go there as if an open and free atmosphere was anathema to them...and it is. I was participating from a pluralistic place...a place where you say your peace...and take on all comers. They...and our leadership, come from a place where you attack from behind before you run and lock yourself away...then issue challenges.
"Just make sculpture"...Jackie and Atour Golani and Nimrod told me...why? So any one of them, or their wife's third cousin just arrived from Tur Abdin could threaten to sue a city five years later for installing the sculpture because "Hammurabi didn't wear earrings" and my putting some on him was a Muslim plot of a traitor Baathey? Of course civilized people are going to recoil from us.
If you once change a sculpture because Golani...whose company can't build safe cars or put tires on them...says so...or change the costumes of your dance company because Jackie thinks red is too red...or leave off the last paragraph in your poem or book because Nimrod doesn't think it's a "good idea"...what are you...what have you allowed yourself to become? You think you're really gonna do us any good? You think you're gonna be able to go to New York or Los Angeles and keep your head and your judgement...or don't those things matter?
Besides it isn't as if they were offering you thousands to conform to their ideas. I love the idea that Atour and Janey were considering suing me to get the money back that was spent on the Hammurabi Maquettes. Godamn it...the money was mine...not theirs...made from the sale of MY sculptures to people happy enough to get them. Sue me to get MY money back...why not? There's leedership for you.
Like I didn't want to finish the Hammurabi??? After three years of work and miles of travel and revisions and countless letters and meetings and $90,000 of MY own money sunk into it? They wanted to sue me?
There are no prerequisites for being an artist...no degree you get from anywhere is gonna land you a job as an artist...an artistic technician maybe...but not anyone in the Fine Arts. And if you are a technician you'll have to work for someone else...we don't have our own "anything" you could go to work for.
What you might have...and that's a big doubt in most artist's mind...is something unique to your own experience to share. To do that it has to STAY your own experience..."art by committee" doesn't work well.
Andre Aghassi would never have received any help from us...never. But when he finds it elsewhere and makes a name for himself...we come crawling...and he kicks us...as he has every right to do...but shouldn't.
That's the central issue for me...why I have to persist though it costs dearly in every way. Either we are going to learn how to deal as civilized people...claiming descent from such civilized people...or we go on allowing unqualified, ego-centered leaders to run and ruin even the things they don't understand at all...each of them willing to use us for what benefits them personally...or break us if we pose a threat to them in their own addled minds
Both Nimrod and Bejan saw ONE thing when they looked at the Shumirum Monument...a chance to enhance their resumes...to show you what they did for YOU. And when they couldn't...when I wouldn't let them take it away they turned on me and you both...on all of us.
Nimrod doesn't want the Shumirum...he never did...tried to talk Helen out of it all along...then he scuttled it. For the monument to come to Chicago as a gift to the entire city from ALL of us...and to come in easily and nicely with no need of whatever influence and power we like to kid ourselves that he has... would be unthinkable to Nimrod. He was never interested in it as something to benefit us...something WE needed. It was something that had to benefit HIM...and if it would appear to hurt him at all...by making him unnecessary or ignoring his desires...then it was unnecessary...for HIM...screw the rest of us...AND your Federation which took $10,000 of OUR money and put it in the Shumirum and has done nothing for it in all this time.
Jackie used the convention to enhance her resume...look at her,,,she runs the best ones. The Shumirum was to be another victory plank for her...she was able to get it installed where all others had failed...where the east Coast had failed...she in the West Coast, with HER contacts and HER people and HER ability...would get the job done.
The fly in her ointment was me again...because I could see what she was up to...saw her stalling till I would be forced to move away and she could run the show entirely as benefitted her...and you little dears too, of course.
To neither one of them did the idea of the Shumirum...the goal behind its creation, matter at all. If it could not benefit them first...serve them first...then who needed it? It isn't just with monuments that they behave this way...it's in everything they do for "us"...it's just glaringly obvious in this case.
We'll still produce talented Assyrians no matter what happens with me. But as in the past, the really good ones wont come withion a mile of us. Jackie said in her response to Melody that there was a sculptor, a woman, who was great or brilliant coming to San Jose...that we had many more talented people than this one rude boor. I saw the three clay pots she brought...things Jackie wouldn't show in her garage if you gave them to her.
Here's a woman who in her own house has over $70,000 worth of my sculpture...telling the rest of you, those of you travelling miles to the convention, those of you interested, those of you with children...that the three pots are good enough... for YOU...that's what you deserve...because she's damned if she's going to be "crossed" and allow the person who "got away" show you his stuff...and "benefit".
And Atour Golani...to whom I gave four bronze sculptures...and a gold pin I'd made to his wife...a man who wept when he saw Ashurbanipal in San Francisco for the first time...he has my sculptures at the convention herded into a corner, covered with tablecloths and walled off...to remove the offending sight from YOUR eyes...while he displays the pieces I gave him proudly in his home.
These people work for us?
They have what they would call a "vision"...but comes across more as acid reflux, of what they think is "good" for the rest of us...those of us willing to hope that something can come out of any sort of a federation of our people...no matter how small. In their reaction to my sculpture...just to that...you can see what drives their vision...that for all they say it is for our benefit...it really isn't...unless we are willing to be "benefitted" by them as they determine. And that would be fine if they would leave the rest of us alone...or willing to allow for other visions...even in the Arts. But they don't. What doesn't serve them, has to be destroyed.
Neither Atour nor Jackie were about to toss out or remove the sculptures of mine they have. They still display them proudly to guests...they still value them as Art. But that wasn't what counted to them...what counted was keeping others from seeing the work...what counted was creating the idea in your minds that I am out for money...that I cheat people...that my sculptures are overpriced...that I am rude and wild and a troublemaker...anything they could get across...and then stop me from being able to defend myself...
It's business as usual for these people...and you all thought Assyrians must not be able to produce talented professionals in these fields all these years. Thank god someone else builds hospitals and medical schools and there is a Law and Court system in this country and institutions for our people to learn from and work at...what would we do otherwise besides drive Taxi's and trucks? Left on our own, how could we ever manage to build these kinds of institutions...are you kidding me? Again, it isn't that we couldn't do it...my Grandafther wanted to make a hospital in Iraq, until he too was betrayed by his own people... and our people in Iran managed to have hospitals way back when. But we wont allow that sort of thing any longer...the people with that sort of vision and ability have no time to be directed and told what to do by an Atour Golani, Nimrod or Bejan.
You can also see what a Francis Sarguis will do to a Narsai David...or an Eden Naby. There is a set pattern we have of tripping up anyone we think might win the race...even, and maybe especially if...he or she is an Assyrian.
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