(Sacramento) Senator Chuck Poochigian (R-Fresno) has introduced SB 424, which would permanently designate April 24 as “Day of Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide” on the occasion of the 90th anniversary of that dark period in history.
“While the California Legislature has recognized April 24 as the Day of Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide for many years, this is the first proposal to permanently commemorate this day in statute,” said Senator Poochigian. “This is an important step toward assuring families of those who perished or were tortured and driven from their historic homeland by the regime in control of the Turkish Ottoman Empire that the tragedy that befell them will never be forgotten.”
April 24 is the date on which Armenians around the world hold solemn observances of the Genocide in recognition of the day in 1915 when a group of Armenian religious, political, and intellectual leaders were arrested and killed. SB 424 will also designate the period from the Sunday before April 24 through the Sunday following as the “Days of Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide.”
The Armenian Genocide became the world’s standard of atrocity until World War II. That is when Adolph Hitler gave reassurance to his followers about his Holocaust plans, saying, “Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?” For decades, California has recognized the Armenian Genocide of 1915-23 when nearly 1.5 million men, women, and children were systematically tortured and murdered or taken on death marches in the Syrian desert.
“While the Genocide took place long ago and far away, the lives of so many living Californians have been touched by it. The issue of the Armenian Genocide’s commemoration is more important today than ever,” said Senator Poochigian. “With growing attempts to revise the historical record of this period, it’s vitally important that false depictions of the tragedies of the Genocide are rejected. The continued recognition of this crime against humanity is crucial to ensuring against the recurrence of genocide and educating people about such despicable acts.”