Tacked onto the bottom of a long list Mike Gatto’s legislative goals for 2014, you’ll find a curious bill urging support for The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. While bills on hot button issues like the film & TV tax credit, affluenza, and the rights of Native American landowners have dominated the headlines, the plight of AJR32 has, to some extent, gotten lost in the shuffle.
But what the fuck is a Nagorno-Karabakh Republic? And more importantly, why should anyone in Los Angeles give a fuck? The answer is long and complicated and boring, so I’ll try to make this as quick as possible.
About a hundred years ago, some fucking assholes called the Ottoman Turks pioneered the craft of genocide by exterminating the population of Armenia. Adding insult to injury, Russia bit off a chunk of Armenia known as Nagorno-Karabakh and decreed that it was now the property of a newly created Soviet Republic of Azerbaijan.
In 1988, a Nagaorno-Karabakh nationalist movement began, and after a few years of war, they established a functionally independent republic of their own. Despite that progress, skirmishes along the disputed border regions continue.
And why should anyone in Los Angeles give a fuck? Well, jackass, because there’s a bunch of Armenians living here, and after getting shit on for the better part of the 20th century, they’ve finally established a community and a base of political power in the city of Glendale, which if you didn’t know, is the centerpiece of the whole goddamn 43rd District!! As their official representative in the State Assembly, Mike Gatto has made the plight of the Armenian people — and by extension, the people of Nagorno-Karabakh — an utmost concern.
Yeah, great. So what does AJR32 actually call for? I’ll let the text of the bill speak for itself:
Okay, fine. So the bill is totally symbolic and serves no tangible purpose. Big fucking deal. Get off Mike’s back. If it’s important to Armenia, it’s important to Mike Gatto. And if it’s important to Mike Gatto, then it’s important to Mike Gatto is a Sweet Dude.