Friday, June 26, 2009

Green Balloon Friday for Iran

The Iranian protests touch me through blogging. That is, I've become friends with Iranian bloggers who have been threatened and whose blogs have been censored in recent days. This tells me how easily an issue becomes personal if I can only put a face on it--if I meet a person who is part of it.

Pasadena Daily Photo is part of a larger community called the City Daily Photo community. One of our fellow bloggers is missing in Tehran.

Here's a blog that's still going strong. He blogs in both Farsi and English. Yesterday he said:


Are you mad about what has been happening inside Iran these days? Well then take a deep breath... blow it all into a Green Balloon... and wait until Friday afternoon to send it up to the sky, wherever you are on this planet. Millions of Iranians inside Iran are planning to paint the sky green on Friday exactly at 1pm Tehran time. The non-violent green movement is being cracked down on the ground, so lets take it to the sky.

People are called to send "green" balloons to the sky on Friday in Iran and any where else in the world. Sky is ours if they ban us express ourselves on the ground. They may shoot our balloons but at least we can be happy that no one dies.

Tehran is 10 hours ahead of us, so just go ahead and send 'em up! Here are some places to buy balloons in Pasadena.

I've chosen to use an old photo today, from my 12th day of blogging. I retouched it for the occasion. My balloons are green at heart.


Dina said...

OK, let's do it!

Anonymous said...

How nice , the hard long road to free Iran would all green

morteza said...

I just came here to thank you for ur post about " Green Ballon Friday for Iran " .
We need ur helps in other countries to reach freedom

Anonymous said...

Many thanks Petrea!
None of us Iranians had ever expected such a huge wave of solidarity through the world for our movement for freedom. Although we have lost lots of lives for simple human rights, the movement will go on until freedom has been achieved.

I thank you deep from my heart for your solidarity!


Anonymous said...

Dear Petrea
I am an Iranian living in Australia. I am mad, sad and angry about what is happening there.
But it is people like you and rest of the people supporting Iranians which give us hope and keep us going.
Thank you for your support and god bless you.
A. from Sydney.


Hi dear
Thanks you for your post.
We did it in Iran.

Anonymous said...

First of all, please let me to thank you for your solidarity with Iranian student & people in supporting in their cause. Your solidarity is a sign of unity between all the people in the world against Tyranny.
Secondly, lets do it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks you

Anonymous said...

Hi Petrea,
Thank you very much for your support. You cannot imagine what a great feeling it is when we see we are not left alone on owr own!
Best wishes
One Iranian woman

hot tea said...

i come here for tell yuo thank you so much.
i'm an iranian movie maker.

Maryam said...

I -as an Iranian girl- was surprised by reading this! and now I'm thankful.
Thanks a lot for your solidarity, we all thank you:)

Elliot said...

What a great and simple idea.

Anonymous said...

Thankyou very much for your solidarity Petrea. Its very hopful to see world dont leave us alone.

Unknown said...

Thank you so much.. I'm so happy to see people around the world support us. it gives us hope to move on.
you made my day.


Laura Grace Bordeaux said...

After 9/11, I cried seeing all the outpourings of support from all the world. Today, let's extend the same care to the people of Iran!

Virginia said...

Great post Petrea. JM left a comment on my BADP blog today that the family has heard from him. I hope this is a good sign.

Anonymous said...

thank you for supporting iranians

Escapist said...

We shld step up to help Iranians..


Anonymous said...

Wow, these comments ...

Petrea Burchard said...

As early evening settles on Iran, I'm just sitting down with my morning coffee. I'm overwhelmed. Thank you all, you are so very welcome here.

I clicked on your names, those that were clickable. Some of the blogs have been shut down. Many others are in Farsi, which I can't read.

I hope you can click on the other commenters here to see what a diverse group supports the Iranian people. One of these commenters is a Jew in the Jerusalem Hills. One is in Jakarta, India. One is a Christian in the American south. And so on.

People around the world support and want freedom. That is why the world is watching.

Stay online this weekend. There will be more on many more blogs as the weekend goes on. Tell your friends in Iran, if you can.

Anonymous said...

PLEASE DON'T SEND GREEN BALLOONS INTO THE SKY THIS FRIDAY to show support for the protestors in Iran. Innocent animals will die slow, agonizing deaths to make this statement - PLANT GREEN TREES TO HONOR NEDA AND FREEDOM INSTEAD OF POLLUTING THE ENVIRONMENT!!! Please be part of the solution instead of the problem!!!!!! Isn't that a better way ????????

Unknown said...

Just wanted to say that this is a wonderful picture!

Anonymous said...

While balloon releases aren't exactly the most eco-friendly gesture, there are precautions you can take to minimize the balloon's effect on the environment. Make sure that you use latex balloons instead of Mylar ones and that you release them without string. If the balloon is inflated fully and properly, then it should freeze when it gets high enough and shatter into pieces too tiny to pose any reasonable danger to wildlife.

Mademoiselle Gramophone said...

Right here in Pasadena we have one of the most thoughtful and intelligent activists for human rights, Ann Lau. Here is what she says about Iran:

There has been much talk about Tiananmen lately, not of what happened in China but of what is happening in Iran. The fear of a Tiananmen style massacre has been in much of the media reports. Such reference to history may have stopped the Iranian regime from using their all out repressive tools, at least not when there is a possibility of it being on YouTube.

Just as the 1989 pro-democracy movement in China gave the world a different view of the Chinese people, so do the protests in Iran have given the world a different face of the Iranians. The image of a dying young woman named Nada will forever be the symbol of the young in Iran longing for freedom just as the iconic image of the tank man's defiance in Beijing. Indeed, a poem written and recited by an Iranian woman in the night amid the rooftop shouts of "God is great" could very well have been the same posting on the Tiananmen democracy wall two decades ago.

Unfortunately, dictatorial regimes also learned that their repressions would garner little long term consequences. After the obligatory condemnations by the world democracies about Iran's violent actions against their own people, some other events will take center stage, the world will soon lose their attention on the 20 Iranian journalists who are now detained nor of the many protesters who will certainly be sentenced to prison terms.

Will the Iranian demonstrators turn out to be like many of the Tiananmen generation of China who became disillusioned and cynical, culminating in the mass scale moral decline as evidenced in the poison milk powder issue?

One thing is certain, the fate of Musavi, the Iranian opposition candidate, will fare no better than Zhao Ziyang, the Chinese Communist Party General Secretary who went to Tiananmen square and told the students, "I came too late." Zhao died after 15 years in house arrest. Still, Musavi is constrained by his belief in the supremacy of a fundamentalist Islamic theocracy just as Zhao's belief in the supremacy of the Communist theocracy, albeit an atheist one.

If the global community is to stem the tide of dictatorial regimes' repressions, it must make its rhetoric counts.

Ann Lau
Chair, Visual Artists Guild

pasadenapio said...

I have posted one on my blog in solidarity of your efforts.

Maria said...

a great color for even a greater cause. i'm in!

Petrea- i was inspired by both PDPs to start my own. thanks for checking in. a bientot!

Petrea Burchard said...

Thanks, everyone. Fantastic discussion. I appreciate the input. Hadn't thought about the environmental impact of the balloons and that's important.

Mlle G, all true: revolutions are often baby steps. But I'm an idealist. We must be allowed to make them, and I can't help but encourage. If nothing else, our participation may have stemmed some violence. The longer we can sustain it the better.

Threats of death penalty today said...

Does it help? I hope it does.

Amy said...

It's wonderful to see all these comments and support. Great post Petrea.

Dina said...

Glad to see Virginia's news from JM.

Shell Sherree said...

Sorry, I thought I left a comment yesterday ... I'll try again. A beautiful photo for an important cause, Petrea. Surely it all helps, even the baby steps. {Nice tip about the 'green' way of sending up balloons, too.}

Ms M said...

Very powerful comments. I hope and pray solidarity through worldwide communication can make a difference. Thank you for your posts.

Petrea Burchard said...

I hope it helps, too, "threats." What's the alternative? Remain silent and watch without comment? What sort of people would that make us?

Thanks, AmyR. More tomorrow.

Yes, Dina, I saw that. Waiting to hear more, and also for news of Sarah. I don't think she's checked in lately.

Shell, yeah, that was a good tip.

Ms. M., worldwide communication would be good. Best to keep the lines open. Even if people argue at least they're still talking.

Jane Hards Photography said...

I can only echo all the above. So many without the freedom we take for granted I noticed have left a comment. Those are the voices we have to speak for.

SP said...

A beautiful response to a difficult and complex situation. Thanks for sharing.