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Wednesday, June 13, 2018

SEA CHANGE FOR GLENDALE, CALIFORNIA

JUNE 13, 2018
Vocabulary word for today: hegemony.  I'd heard it and maybe even used it in the past, but just remembered what it means.  Hegemony is afoot in Glendale, California. 

A 'Sea Change' is when something that may be what Malcolm Gladwell calls "a tipping point" happens.  It's a time when the burgeoning tide of an idea moves the scales to something new: be it physical, mental, political or as has been happening.. in Glendale, cultural. 
Glendale's culture is tipping.

For many years these well organized Armenian immigrants to Glendale, instead of heading for Little Armenia in Los Angeles, have gravitated to  changing our city. Ignoring assimilation, their goal seems to be and has been... more obviously now..  to install their foreign culture here: To overwhelm Glendale with Armenian customs, Armenian architecture, Armenian language:  virtually overwhelming the City of Glendale, California.

At last night's City Council meeting (June 12, 2018).. a group called United Young Armenians, who had proposed a name change for a section of Maryland Avenue in Glendale to "Artsakh" (an evidently disputed region of Armenia that is not recognized by the world community), showed up in force with what appeared to be a bevy of older Armenians who arrived, were coached and 'assisted' by City volunteers: Young Armenians who filled out special teal blue cards supporting the idea of this name change.  The older people disappeared after their ballots were collected by the volunteers. There was no organized order to the way the ballots were handed out and no "first come, first served" for the list of speakers who wanted to address the City Council. It was a debacle. Challenging the Young Armenians who facilitated the distribution of the Speaker cards and the "Yea or Nay" ballots was ignored. The opportunity to "stuff" this odd ballot box was open. It appeared that at least one young Armenian woman was filling out multiple teal blue forms.

After the Glendale City Planning Commission sent a REJECTION of this name change idea to City Council for good cause, the United Young Armenians, wearing black T shirts imprinted with "Artkeh Forever" filled the Council Chambers.  Because I arrived after the chambers had been filled to capacity, I sat in the lobby of City Hall and watched first hand as the room became crowded with many Armenians of all ages  being 'assisted' by the volunteers. Cultural profiling? Well, it's pretty clear when you hear a familiar foreign language for starters. 

 The minute that there was any issue of the process being skewed, the matter of this name change should have been tabled.  That our city will now literally 'celebrate diversity' by funding this project to the tune of $131,000.00.. 

ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY ONE THOUSAND TAX DOLLARS 

For a special Armenian interests project to be promoted by City Council that does not serve a majority of our population is unconscionable. 

It seems as though the Armenian community is less interested in 'diversity' and more interested in making Glendale the center of their culture. How does this serve the majority of Glendale residents?  With the Glendale City Council consisting of four men with Armenian names, this business of manipulating spending and this 'cultural sea change'  feels a little like that movie where foreign invaders hold sway in an insidious way: pressing their agenda on all who are unfortunate to encounter them.  Those who resist are eliminated. Our situation is more overt than insidious.
EDIT..  
I quoted an email  from one of our Council Members without asking  permission before hand. This was not polite.  I am embarrassed and have apologized. 
Our situation in Glendale is becoming more serious. Hegemony?   In the public record now is the information that the Young Armenians will possibly get their name change for Maryland to become Artsakh.  Again.. I apologize that I neglected the courtesy of asking the Council Member if I might quote what was sent to me in a private message.

END OF EDIT..

As an addendum.. I want to mention that many other sites for an Armenian museum, scheduled to be part of an Eighty Million Dollar "renovation" that will obliterate Central Park have been suggested. However, it has been my understanding that Mayor Zareh Sinanyan, after the rejection by residents in north Glendale to build the Armenian museum on a space next to the Glendale Auditorium, simply 'suggested' Central Park as the site with NO FORMAL PUBLIC DEBATE (as was held with the Planning Commission regarding the Maryland name change).  The City Council then simply vetted the idea of choosing Central Park, held expensive promotional meetings to further instill the Armenian museum idea and changes as a 'done deal.' This is not democracy. This feels like government by caveat.

Of course, we are in dark times politically in the United States. There are people who actually believe ideas that are destructive to the democratic way of life that we have enjoyed and now.. sadly.. we echo these dark times here in our small city. 

This architecture reflects, I understand, the mountains of Ararat. It will block the sun and the view of our Verdugos will fall victim to kitch and chrome at the will of these immigrant invaders. 


This is not to 'hate' anyone. I support the Armenian museum, just not at this location. Not to lose forever the green space: Central Park.
I simply want to expose changes that are being manipulated at the expense of the majority of the residents of Glendale. The sad fact seems to be that accepting that 'it's a done deal' and  rising to the call to duty and discussion regarding these changes is not of interest to the long time residents of Glendale who, like the Democrats, have been complacent and may allow this 'sea change' to become the end of traditional culture enjoyed in Glendale for almost a hundred years. 

This, to me, is just a shame. 

ADDENDUM:
According to the Glendale City Clerk's office, at the City Council meeting last night, there were three venues for observing the meeting in addition to the closed circuit TV broadcast. The community room at the Glendale Police Department was in use as was the lobby of City Hall and the actual Council chambers.  345 blue "position slips" to 'vote' for or against the name change for Maryland Avenue were returned. Of those, a reported 309 were in favor of the name change to "Artsakh", 21 were opposed and 15 neglected to check a box. 
The speaker list was in excess of seventy with 67 speaking in favor of the change to the Armenian name with only SIX not in favor.  I was exhausted after two hours of waiting and did not stay for the end of the meeting which adjourned at 12:30. For anyone with curiosity, the meeting was recorded in full.   
http://glendale.granicus.com /MediaPlayer.php?view_id=12&clip_id=7650

If 'hegemony' is in play here in Glendale, with enthusiastic United Young Armenians, rallying to build support for overwhelming Glendale's traditional culture with their own, turning our community from a diverse and open town to a center for a growing Armenian influence, we, at least, need to be aware.  Our City Council has vetted this name change in the face of informed  Planning Commission's rejection of the idea.  This says something and this is important.   Not only will $130,000.00 be in play, but this tide of cultural  of change is only the beginning. 
End of Addendum.  

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