Snapchat didn’t acknowledge Persian New Year on their story. Not cool! Here’s what I wrote:
I use you everyday. I love you. I love watching the little tid-bits of my friends lives, seeing artwork, food, scenery, and anything else they like to post. I also really enjoy when you guys post stories from The World Cup, Diwali, Hanukkah, Xmas. But I was pretty disappointed – actually, scratch that – royally pissed the f*ck off to see that the Persian New Year was not acknowledged at all. Sure, I saw a couple fire-jumping ceremonies on the “LA Life” story, but no cute Nowruz graphic, let alone a story. I mean you guys had one about Indian Kite Day for Christ’s sake. Not hating on that at all, but I’m sure SOMEONE on your board is well aware of how widely celebrated Nowruz is. In case I’m wrong, here are some facts, taken from a Harvard informational PDF on the holiday:
“People all over the world celebrate Nowruz, but it originated in the geographical area called Persia in the Middle East and Central Asia. The distinct culture based on the language, food, music and leisure activities that developed among the many people and ethnic groups who lived in this area is known as Persian. Nowruz became a popular celebration among the communities that grew from these Persian influenced cultural areas. While the physical region called Persia no longer exists, the traditions of Nowruz are strong among people in Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, India, Pakistan, Turkey, Canada and the United States.
Nowruz is a holiday that is celebrated by people from diverse ethnic communities and religious backgrounds. For the Parsi community, however, Nowruz is very special and is known as their spiritual New Year.” – http://cmes.hmdc.harvard.edu/files/NowruzCurriculumText.pdf
Now I’ve added the populations of some of the above-mentioned countries and it looks like theres over 300 million people in the Middle East/Central Asia alone who celebrate Nowruz. Now add in the literally millions of Persians and Afghans who live in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago…. and it seems pretty silly that “LA Life” was given leverage over a holiday that is celebrated by a huge chunk of the world.
I really hope this complete neglect of an entire culture of peoples has nothing to do with the recent heat Iran has gotten in the media. I really, REALLY hope this was not the case, but the skeptic in me literally could not think of another reason.
So Snapchat, I’ll keep using you. But you let down a lotta people. Hope to see a Nowruz acknowledgement next year – for the diversification, acceptance, and message of love and solidarity across all peoples.
-Madinah Wardak Noorai, Afghan-American, Los Angeles