religion :: hate is a global issue
|Roma in history|
by Luis Delgado
Typically called gypsies, Roma can go by the names Cigano, Gypsies, Gipsies, Rom, Roma, Romani, Tsigani, Tzigane, and Zigeuner.
The Council of Europe has since 1995 used the term Roma to refer to Gypsies. The word Gypsy has come over the centuries to poses a very negative connotation. The term incorrectly applied to Roma because the Europeans of the time believed that the origins of the Roma were Egyptian. Actually, most Roma came from the areas in southeast Asia near India.
In the middle ages rumors about the Roma led to their persecution and hatred were that they were descended from the offspring of Roma women and the devil.
Religious groups have from time to time lashed out at the gypsies. Christians in the 16th century were guilty of persecution that included the murder or the banishment of Roma. There are many religious rumors that led to their persecution. Roma were accused of conspiring to attack the church. Roma were accused of being responsible for forging the nails used to crucify Christ.
These rumors fueled animosity that resulted in hateful actions. Roma were allowed to be killed by Christians, according to the Diet of Augsburg, which controlled much of Germany in the 1500's. The killing of Roma would not be considered murder, and the courts would not hear the cases of Roma injured by Christians.
The Diet of Augsburg also declared that the Roma were traitors to the Christian countries and accused them of being witches, of being thieves and for kidnapping babies. In 1504 Louis XII bans Roma from living in France and removes those already there.
As time passes from the Diet of Augsburg countries one by one begin to expel the Roma. Finally in 1568 The Roma are banished from all Roman Catholic areas by Pope Pius V.
Today there is still animosity but the result is not as extreme as death or banishment. Roma are relocated and ignored there cries to the police go unanswered and the newest forms hate groups in all parts of Europe have selected the Roma as a segment of the population to hate.