Russian language discrimination

The topic of discrimination remains relevant in Europe, which traditionally sets the bar for the protection of human rights.

Estonia also takes part in various pan-European initiatives, in particular in the campaign “2007 – European Year of Equal Opportunities for All”. The final conference following the annual program of events organized by the Ministry of Social Affairs was held last Friday in the conference hall of the University of Tallinn.

The conference was opened by Minister of Social Affairs Maret Maripuu. She stated that every person is important for little Estonia, therefore, the struggle for equal opportunities for all is a very urgent task. The Minister also expressed hope that this topic will not remain only “for quiet rooms”, but will be widely discussed in society. And not only during the annual campaigns, but constantly and every day.

Kadi Wijk, Head of the Department of Gender Equality of the Ministry of Social Affairs, reviewed the activities undertaken as part of the annual campaign. She highlighted two events: the international conference in Tartu on the topic of religious tolerance, and the project “Respect the Differences” in Lääne-Virumaa, whose goal was to develop a tolerant attitude towards people with physical disabilities. Ms. Wijk also mentioned the unrealized draft media campaign. Why it was not realized, she explained so confused that it was very difficult to understand the true reasons.

On the theoretical side, the issue of equality and discrimination was explained by the judge of the European Court of Human Rights, Wright Maruste. He recalled that for many centuries inequality was considered a normal and natural phenomenon in human society. A vivid example is at least the famous Roman law, from which all modern jurisprudence has grown. Therefore, to the slogan “Freedom, equality, fraternity”, put forward for the first time by the French Revolution, many are still skeptical, believing that complete equality exists only in the bathhouse.

Further, the eminent lawyer delved into the theoretical foundations of the activities of the European Court of Human Rights and a description of the international obligations Estonia has in this area.

The theme of the conference, like all the events of the annual campaign, suggests that such “sharp corners” as discrimination based on national and linguistic principles are carefully avoided. But in vain. Having received the conference materials, any Russian person would at first feel gratitude to the organizers, who were not stingy with publishing the package of materials in Russian. However, having got acquainted with them more closely, I would prefer that the organizers do not.

The only thing that can still be called Russian is the translation of the conference program and the press release. The following pearls follow: “ombudspersons from Sweden” (probably ombudsmen from Sweden), the constant mention of some “project leaders” (leaders should be thought of), “the purpose of the report is to discuss this …”, “refusal to conduct a job interview “,” Serving customers it is not suitable “- and so in almost every offer. Women throughout the text are stubbornly called “women.” And what about the phrase: “Journalism can create an agent in different ways: escalating conflicting opinions”? Or: “under the leadership of the NGOs of Patients with a hernia of the spinal cord and water head, a youth camp“ Good Life ”was organized in Elva.”

You should not even talk about grammatical errors and typos – they are in almost every word. It’s just right to sue the European Court of Human Rights for bullying a Russian reader of all this. But what was easier: to give these materials, which are only about a dozen pages, for verification. Not even a professional Russian philologist, but simply a competent native speaker of the Russian language.

This post is also available in: English Русский (Russian)

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