Those of you who follow my work, and sometimes roam my website, know that I have a tab dedicated to my Artivism (Projects where I use my art and my public visibility to help promote a cause I believe in.)
Naturally, first, I am an artist. My passion is to create. Whether with music, acting, design, writing, painting, you name it. But along the years, activism gradually started taking a bigger part of my life and career. I am not a politician, I cannot decide on policies and steer governments, but I do believe in grass root change, where people connect with people, on an individual level. People are afraid of what they don't...
"You do know that God gave that land to the Jews, right?"
"I don't consider the bible a history book. Therefore, sorry, I don't."
"The bible is not a history book, it is the word of God."
"Again, I am not seeking to offend your beliefs, but I do not believe in the God you are talking about, and therefore, to me, the bible is a book of mythology, written by man, not a reliable documentation of anything."
"Well, I am sorry for you."
"Oh, you are?", I start to lose my patience.
"Yes, because you cannot see the truth."
"I can see my own truth,"
"There is no truth without HIM", her finger in now pointing to the ceiling.
“You are not a Palestinian Israeli, you are Arab Israeli!”
A female voice pierced the silence in the room. A few members of the crowd sounded murmurs of discontent. And from above the stage I said: “I think I have the right to decide that for myself”.
The crowd applauded.
“No, you don’t!” insisted the woman.
Now the crowd was agitated’ “Of course she does!”,
“You are Arab Israeli!”
“Oh, leave her alone already”, voices in the room started repeating.
“Madame, I do insist it is my right to decide how to define my own identity like it is your right to decide yours.”
The woman stood up and left the room.
A man with a Yamuka shared how identity is imposed...
Standing in a long line, cursing myself for yet again forgetting to renew my Bulgarian passport that would have given me access to the Fast Track. A few steps away from me, the "Fast Track" for EU citizens was totally clear. It looked shiny clean, with all its high tech scanners and automatic glass doors, I could almost hear background music of heavenly angel singing, inviting me there, luring me in, the soundtrack abruptly disrupted by an imaginary electric guitar screech, "No fast track for you today!".
I was trying to calm myself with the thought that maybe all this would be irrelevant anyway when/if/how the UK completes Brexit, when I noticed the per...
"Where are you coming from?"
"Tel-Aviv", I say.
But something in her face tells me she is not satisfied with the answer. She stares at my passport for clues. I start staring at my passport too. It had so willingly passed from my palm to hers, and now it seems like it is almost arroused with the fact that it is telling about me. What is it they are whispering to each other in codes? I feel so left out! This object that lives under my roof, turns out to be a traitor!
The Israeli security woman looks like she has an idea now: "Where were you born?".
Ah! A good one. Because although I am a resident of Tel-Aviv for the last twenty years, I indeed was not born...
Those of you who have been following this week's events know that I faced a media tsunami following (yet more) statements by Israeli minister of culture Miri Regev. Those of you who haven't, in a nut shell: Two weeks ago I was notified that I had won an award from Acum (Society of Authors, Composers and Music Publishers in Israel) for my contribution for the empowerment of Palestinian music and its integration into Israeli culture, and was asked to sing something at the ceremony, and I decided to perform the ultimate solidarity anthem from my repertoire, a song called "Think of others" by Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish. Regev, who likes to claim that...