Marking 100 years since the still unrecognized Armenian Genocide, people of all ages gather in solidarity at the San Francisco City Hall to watch Arax Armenian dance ensemble perform the beauty of culture of resilience for the Armenian Genocide centennial commemoration. Amongst the audience, representatives of the city, state, and even Rwanda council and Assyrian communities gave remarks of solidarity.
Many ask why the Armenian genocide centennial is significant today and what it means for not only Armenians in the country or diaspora, but for the rest of the world. It’s significant because it’s a prime example of an unacknowledged and denied atrocity, that is repeated today in countries near and far. It’s significant because genocides unacknowledged are genocides that will happen again, and do cycle into today. It’s significant because our future generations deserve to live in a country that accepts their people’s histories and identities, in order to move forward, feel whole, build on and teach the world that our identity does not only revolve around the genocide- our history didn’t start there and it didn’t end there. There are clearly some important and beautiful things that have kept it alive. However, it’s hard to believe that after 100 years, the atrocities are still not ‘worthy’ of being defined as ‘genocide’.
Photography and writing by Lara Sarkissian