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Thread: Are you a Gypsy? Would you like to know?

  1. #241
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    Plus I agree with Ais a lot of people do it because it's interesting and you can find other things you didn't even know. I wasn't sure what irish to expect but didn't expect the 3% South Asian but it does explain why my brother and mum are darker toned plus other family members. I did think originally kool maybe romantic relations during British raj?? 😏 but I'm ruling all that out now and it's leading to Romany heritage I don't know how far back or how much full or 1/2 or 1/4 or 1/8 blood I have in my family scattered maybe 3 out of 4 grandparents have blood lines judging paper trail and the rumour (which yeah probably be fantasy) but for sure plenty mixed with Gorjer diluting it. Why are you so offended by people on here being curious or interested in their personal past? It's tight. And so what if someone hopes for something exotic yeah uk and Europe is boring but once or if an heritage is ruled out people move on and eventually find the truth of who they are and be happy.

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  3. #242
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    Ps as mean as I think you are I don't wish to cause you offence Vashti as how you feel about this thread that's your opinion.

  4. #243
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    So Vashti what you are saying is that if you are a certain ethnicity,be it Romani or whatever, it's an affront to have other people wonder how much they also come from that ethnicity? To put it bluntly that's ignorant poppycock.
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    Oh dear god. Gorjas get a grip on yourselves.

  6. #245
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vashti View Post
    And what we get is reams of people who take DNA tests and are suddenly Romani. How do you think that appears/feels to those of us who ARE? Too many of you are wrapped up in what you think is an exotic fairytale and you want to be anything but white or European or Gorjas. It's sickening to us. First it was Native Americans and now it's Romani. "Separated from their heritage and want to recapture it." I'd ask - what is one's heritage? Is it something that can be found in DNA or is it something that one was raised with?
    I'm neither part Romani nor Native American, neither culturally nor based on some tiny percentage of DNA.

    However, if having a tiny percentage of DNA helped me understand something about my family history -- for example, more about the story of a specific ancestor and what their life was like -- that would be of interest to me. This does not have to mean thinking it's exotic or that I don't want to be what I am (which is American anyway). It would interest me for the same reason learning something unexpected about my heritage would, and investigating that ancestor, if I could identify him or her, would be of interest for the same reason I want to know stuff about other ancestors.

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  8. #246
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    I can see where Vashti is coming from. Having fallen for bad advice on interpreting my paper trail, I thought I knew my grandmother's parents were British Romany. I have to tell you all that there is a fine line to walk on that, and this is from someone who trampled that line. Unintentionally, but I still hurt some good folk in the process. I had a very rich and educational interaction with someone who is Romany, a few in fact, but one in particular. Quite likely Vashti knows this person, but I won't mention names, it doesn't matter for this topic.

    Should someone have the right to learn about possible Romany heritage? Yes, definitely. Nobody has the right to tell you to shove off with regards to that. But for those who are doing so and those who are arguing for the right of these people to do so, you really need to understand the history of the Romany. I saw with my own eyes people trying to profit off of a BS version of Romany culture. Even those who believe they have pure intentions can go astray. I also saw people spread complete untruths and basically co-opt a narrative that has been longer overdue for accuracy. So, yes, go discover what ancestry you might have and if you do find something legit, honor it and learn as much as you can. But never forget, as Vashti said, it isn't the same as living it, I know that from the Romany I have talked with. This shouldn't need a gorja to be saying this but I think some are missing the point that is being made.

    There is a good reason they say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. I should know, I laid every brick on my own path.

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  10. #247
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    Quote Originally Posted by therrien.joel View Post
    Should someone have the right to learn about possible Romany heritage? Yes, definitely. Nobody has the right to tell you to shove off with regards to that. But for those who are doing so and those who are arguing for the right of these people to do so, you really need to understand the history of the Romany. I saw with my own eyes people trying to profit off of a BS version of Romany culture. Even those who believe they have pure intentions can go astray. I also saw people spread complete untruths and basically co-opt a narrative that has been longer overdue for accuracy. So, yes, go discover what ancestry you might have and if you do find something legit, honor it and learn as much as you can. But never forget, as Vashti said, it isn't the same as living it, I know that from the Romany I have talked with. This shouldn't need a gorja to be saying this but I think some are missing the point that is being made.
    Maybe I am missing the point, because I think Vashti seems to be making some odd assumptions, and I'm not sure what this has to do with "profiting" at all.

    What I think we are talking about is people seeing something in their DNA results (specifically, matches with people of Romani background) that causes them to think they might have a Romany ancestor, researching that with the paper trail and more careful DNA research, and perhaps identifying that an ancestor was Romany and then, as with any ancestor, learning more about his or her life through research.

    No, I don't personally think having a gg grandparent who was Romany makes you Romany. (I have a great grandmother who was Swedish, I wouldn't say I'm "Swedish" or think I am somehow now part of Swedish culture despite not growing up with any of it. I might say I'm part Swedish or an eighth, though, and sure I get that's less charged because there's no particular history of persecution or exoticization in the same way. Some poster here keeps telling me I'm "Jewish" meaning a little bit of Jewish ancestry. I don't think that's true, but if it were I'd be interested in the details of the person's life, it wouldn't make me more callous about historical persecution of Jews, it would be of interest in the same way that my surprise French ancestors were of interest. (It also wouldn't make me Jewish, obviously.)

    The only place I've run into this idea that people WANT to be "Gypsies" or, for that matter, "Irish Travelers" (which won't be discovered by DNA testing) is here, for the record, if anything I think most people I know don't really want to be. What I think fits that model better is Native Americans, and yeah people think they are who aren't, but if you find out you really do have an ancestor understanding the life and history of that ancestor the way I think people serious about family history try to do with ancestors seems to me likely to cause MORE understanding of how Native Americans were treated, not less. I think it's dumb to think you understand what it's like to be a Native American with certain experiences today because you found out you are a little bit Native American, but who is actually doing that here? (The people who are inclined to are probably not likely to look closely at the evidence.)

    For one example, when I first started researching my family history I was having trouble getting information about my dad's dad's family, and I thought he knew less than he did (my dad's dad died when I was a baby and was a mean drunk resulting in various estrangements). Based on what I knew I ended up following a line to a guy, who would have been my gg grandfather, who clearly had been part African American and changed from "mulatto" to white on progressive censuses. All of a sudden some things that I recalled -- like my grandfather supposedly hating my dad's fullish lips and telling him to hold his lips in as a child -- seemed to make sense. I started trying to raise this idea with my dad, beginning by telling him I'd found his dad born in Chillicothe, OH, as he'd said, and I thought his g-grandfather was born (I don't even remember now, somewhere in the south). My dad laughed and said that his dad was born in WA state, his grandmother was supposedly from Chillicothe, and proceeded to give me a full name and place of birth for his paternal grandfather that turned out to be correct and actually showed he was 100% English and Welsh and eventually I found lots and lots of information, relatives, photos. So I felt kind of stupid.

    However, I don't think briefly thinking I might be a tiny percentage African American hurt any actual African Americans. If I had been, it would have been dumb for me to think I was now able to speak to the American black experience, duh, but exploring the circumstances of my ancestor would if anything have probably taught me something about how life was for him, and caused me to feel closer, perhaps, to the reality of how black people were treated in the US, slavery, so on. I think it would be likely to cause more understanding, not less.

    And I do think studying people like this can help with understanding. When I first started I never particularly wanted to be anything in particular (I've never desired to be some particular ethnicity and am not bothered by the fact that I seem to be just white either -- the "passing" ancestor would have been an interesting story, but not something I was seeking out, we have family Native American stories that I've always thought were likely bunk and never cared if they were true or not). However, what I initially did not like was that much of my family seemed boring -- farmers who just kept moving west. Learning about them has made me much more interested in history and details that I never would have found interesting before in all kinds of ways, and I think it can really do that (and IME can even when you intentionally research people not related to you).

    Sorry so long, but I guess this is something that interests me.

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  12. #248
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    Thank you, Joel. You understand.
    My postings here have been out of anger, I'm not explaining myself well, and coming from a place of emotion. I apologize for that.

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  14. #249
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    I do know a lot about the Romany people went through I can't believe you even think you know me enough to say I don't. I know it's the same for the Irish travellers too, he wasn't related to me but he was my dads friend he committed suicide because of stress from all over. Mainly because of the new land owner making him move on for that final time. Don't ever insult me Vashti thinking you know everything because you say you are 100% pure. So what you saying someone with prehaps only 1/4, 1/8 or maybe less can't be amongst the gypsy traveller community when I already don't fit with the Gorjer community. You are just as bad as them in my eyes.

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    Infact forget it I feel bad within myself for sending that post. I shouldn't have sent it. I came here asking for help. I'm sorry for getting mad but I feel hurt and upset. Its just a forum.

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