America’s only legally blind governor, David A. Paterson of New York State, has proclaimed April 24, 2008 Armenian Remembrance Day in the Empire State.

In commemorating the Genocide, Paterson also remembered Greeks and Assyrians who were killed along with the Armenian nation.

Whereas, a global leader in human and social rights, the Empire State has a prominent role in highlighting humanitarian concerns and teaching future generations critical lessons derived from mankind’s past transgressions and intolerance, and we acknowledge the importance of discussing such events that contribute to our understanding of world history while promoting tolerance for people of all races, religions and points of view; and

Whereas, the Armenian Genocide of 1915-23 was a catastrophic event during which an estimated 1.5 million Armenians were killed by the Ottoman authorities under whose imperial rule most Armenians lived; alongside their Greek and Assyrian imperial co-subjects, Armenian men, woman and children met their end in mass killings, organized death marches, starvation tactics and other brutal methods employed against civilians; and

Whereas, a deliberate effort to destroy people on a massive scale, the Armenian Genocide led academics to use the term genocide and it is believed that, had the Armenian Genocide been stopped through diplomatic or interventionist means, the resulting precedent for peace could have prevented the Holocaust that befell the Jewish people; and

Whereas, the Armenian Genocide caused the displacement of the Armenian people from their ancestral lands, the loss of two-thirds of the these lands and the orphaning of countless Armenian children; Armenians’ expulsion from their ancient territories was so extreme that almost every Armenian-American family can trace its immigration history to the Genocide and to the missionaries in the Middle East that housed children, the European continent, and ultimately to the United States; and

Whereas, New York recognizes that the number of survivors of the Armenian Genocide of 1915-23 is dwindling and the memory of the elderly who experienced and witnessed its occurrence has led to courageous testimonials that have put a human face on this event; and

Whereas, it is fitting that all New Yorkers recognize the hardships Armenians faced, for the purpose of preventing tragedies such as the Armenian Genocide of 1915-23 from recurring, and to appreciate the United State’s role as a refuge for all oppressed people […]