Bill Paparian, former mayor of Pasadena CA, is running for the House as a Green. Something is happening. His campaign is getting major traction, interest from the media, and the buzz is definitely building. This will not be the usual Green campaign where the candidate gets 5% of the vote, rather Paparian will get considerably more votes than that – you read it here first.
He’s strongly antiwar, and this is the primary theme that is resonating among voters. The Pasadena / Glendale area has one of the largest Armenian populations anywhere (including Armenia) and as a bloc, is strongly antiwar. Yet, even Republicans can be antiwar too. The current issue of USA Armenian Life has a front page photo of Paparian with Bill Holderness, a notable Republican who now opposes the war and supports Paparian.
I was involved in the Green Party for a while. More than a few had been Republicans before becoming Greens, so it shouldn’t be surprising when a highly visible local Republican supports a Green candidate.
In the aftermath of the Armenian genocide, Arabs in the surrounding areas opened their hearts to Christian Armenians and aided them when they needed help the most, a generosity Armenians have not forgotten. Armenians thus see Arab culture as the highly developed civilization that it is (indeed, during the Dark Ages in Europe, it was Arab culture that kept civilization alive in the West.) Armenians, who live in many countries in the Middle East, tend to oppose imperialism there, whether it be U.S. or Zionist. Local Armenians, many who emigrated from Lebanon, have picked up on Paparian’s message, and he’s been appearing on Armenian cable TV virtually every night.
Bill Paparian, a friend (I’m his webmaster too), is the real deal. Strongly progressive, he opposes the Iran and Afghanistan wars, saying bring the troops home now, and stop the torture too. If you live in the area, this is the campaign to get involved with.