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August 16, 2022



Karel Holomek

Author's articles

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Karel Holomek: When remembrance is out of joint

Brno, 12.8.2014 19:27, (ROMEA) The month of August here is traditionally linked with commemorating the victims of the Roma Holocaust, unfortunately usually only in Roma circles. Of course, this occasion is also marked in the official circles of government and state, but that is not the same thing as being marked by society.  full story

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Karel Holomek: "Positive discrimination" - nonsense or a total misunderstanding?

Brno, 25.6.2014 20:27, (ROMEA) The news that Czech Human Rights Minister Dienstbier intends to submit the 2020 Romani Integration Strategy to the Government has sparked horror in political circles across the political spectrum here, or at best has sparked a reaction of total rejection. This has happened on the basis of a suggestive question asked by the tabloid daily Parlamentní listy, namely, whether these politicians support the "positive discrimination" of Romani people?  full story

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Karel Holomek: Czech PM should have a Romani advisor

Brno, 27.3.2014 16:04, (ROMEA) The Czech PM has assembled 36 advisers for a mere half a million crowns, but the money is not the point. The sheer number of his advisers strikes me as fearsome.  full story

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Karel Holomek: Some Czech senators know not what they do

Brno, 27.12.2013 17:56, (ROMEA) Our senators have distinguished themselves once again. About a week ago they adopted a resolution by a large majority in response to recommendations from the Council of the EU on the matter of discrimination against Romani people.  full story

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Karel Holomek: What democracy and freedom mean to me

Brno, 17.11.2013 15:29, (ROMEA) For me, democracy and freedom mean the opportunity to express my opinions on public affairs and to participate in them. When I express my opinions to the public, I don't feel restricted by anything other than the accuracy of my statements, which can be critical of abuses in society and eventually of those who personify those abuses, such as people in politics, including at the highest levels, and in public offices.  full story

Commentary by Karel Holomek: A killing or a murder?

Brno, 5.1.2012 20:03, (ROMEA) Whether it was a killing or a murder, it must be properly explained and taken up by the legal authorities. I am talking about the case of the death of one young Romani man and the serious injury caused to another on New Year's Eve in Tanvald.  full story

Karel Holomek: I have known Václav Havel a long time

Brno, 20.12.2011 17:59, (ROMEA) After the death of Václav Havel, people are researching those who might have been graced by his presence or had the opportunity to meet with him personally during the days before he became famous. This is understandable, because Václav Havel was and will always be considered an extraordinary, world-class personality. At the moment there is holomek-karel-CB_big.jpgnot another one like him here.  full story

Karel Holomek: Solutions never implemented, ethnic relations will deteriorate

Brno, 8.9.2011 14:49, (ROMEA) Relations between Romani people and Czechs (non-Roma) are proceeding as anticipated. Between 2003 and 2005, a Working Group of citizens and experts proposed essential preparatory steps to take and also predicted what might happen if those steps were not be taken: The situation would deteriorate until we begin to address Romani problems as a whole at both the local and statewide level instead of permitting the disorganized improvisation that has characterized this effort until now.  full story

Commentary: Barmaid not responsible for machete attack

Brno, 15.8.2011 23:55, (ROMEA) I don't want to sound like a long-distance wise-guy, if only because I am a Romani man who is old enough to know how pub disputes like the recent one in the "Pivní pomoc" game room in Nový Bor usually develop. However, because that dispute was marked by several features that characterize many such incidents in this country, I would like to express my opinion about it.  full story

Commentary by Karel Holomek: The embarrassing end to the Czech presidency of the Decade

Czech Republic, 7.7.2011 17:37, (ROMEA) At the end of June, the Czech Republic handed over the presidency of the Decade of Roma Inclusion to Macedonia. For those who are not completely in the picture: The Decade is a 10-year program during which governments solemnly pledged to achieve success in coexistence between Romani people and their majority-society citizens and to implement so-called Action Programs based on various programs for integrating Romani people into society. In other words: To raise up Romani people to a level comparable to that of other citizens in society while preserving their identity at the same time. We hasten to say that this is a task that is just as binding for Romani people themselves as it is for other citizens, aware as we are of the kinds of objections that are raised during discussions of this issue, which usually lack a basis in reality.  full story

Karel Holomek: The census is about facts, not feelings

Brno, 26.3.2011 18:44, ( I am hearing many people taking exception to the participation of Roma assistants with the census commissioner during the 2011 census. Jan Kysela, an expert in constitutional law, claims that the use of Roma assistants is a sin against the objectivity of the census because it will influence who people feel they are. Mr Kysela is grossly in error, because the census is about facts, not feelings. He is thinking of Roma people who might be influenced by Roma assistants to the census commissioners to believe that perhaps they don't have to feel they are Roma. What a bitter - and ridiculous - commentary that is!  full story

Commentary by Karel Holomek: Czech mayors' declaration is amateurish nonsense!

Brno, 26.2.2011 21:20, ( I am looking at the Mayors' Declaration of Nový Bydžov, dated 14 February. It is hard to believe this Declaration is the result of the efforts of some of the top leaders of our town halls, aided and abetted by representatives of the Czech Chamber of Deputies, and as it turns out, it was not written by those who really comprise the elite of this country (thank God)!  full story

Commentary by Karel Holomek: Czech Government social strategy unmasked

Brno, 8.2.2011 1:04, ( The "Strategy for the Fight against Social Inclusion" is a document which was meant to be submitted to the government for approval in the middle of last year. It wasn't. The material was developed by the analyst Ivan Gabal together with the head of the (now-defunct) Socioklub association, Petr Víšek.  full story

Commentary by Karel Holomek: It's all up to the mayor of Nový Bydžov

Brno, 27.1.2011 23:34, (Lidové noviny) The mayor of Nový Bydžov has called on his colleagues in other towns and villages to take action to make sure the state finally imposes some order. His message is understood to concern imposing order on members of the Roma community, even though the fine print at the end of his letter does admit that some "decent" Roma do also exist.  full story

Czech Decade Ambassador Holomek: Impotent democracies and the Roma

Brno, 4.9.2010 16:59, (Lidové noviny) The deportations of Roma – most recently, once again, from France – are proof of how fragile the democracies of various societies in Europe actually are, how they founder at the first sign of a more serious problem. Are the Roma, once again, the cause of this? Without their realizing it, the Roma are becoming a touchstone for how these democracies operate - including the traditional ones. The Roma hold a mirror up to these societies, revealing to their members what they really look like. This should be appreciated rather than censured. History will certainly appreciate it!  full story

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