Necessity Still Breeds Ingenuity - Archive of SQUALL MAGAZINE 1992-2006

Nothing New: A History Of Gyp

Squall 4, April/May 1993, pg. 5.

* In the 1650's thirteen people were executed at Bury St. Edmunds for the heinous crime of being a gypsy.

* 1822: The English Vagrancy Act declared that all persons pretending to be gypsys, telling fortunes, wandering abroad or lodging in tents, carts or wagons were to be deemed rogues and vagabonds with a penalty of up to six months imprisonment.

* 1852: Gypsys were still being sold as slaves in Europe.

* In the 1930s and 1940s thousands of gypsys were exterminated by Hitler and his puppet heads of state.

* Up until 1973 the largest children’s charity in Switzerland were taking gypsy children without consent, changing their names and putting them in foster homes.

* In 1992 the Department of the Environment published a consultation paper with proposals to effectively outlaw the travelling way of life.

John Carlisle (Conservative MP, Luton North) said: “The time has come for gypsys to be banished into the wilderness.”

There is an old Jewish custom where all the sins of the people are ceremonially placed onto the back of a goat which is then turned into the desert to die of thirst. It is the origin of the word ‘scapegoat’.