Meet Praq Rado. His story is told by Taylor Vecsey in the East Hampton Patch in an article that went up last week. Rado is awaiting his fate in Los Angeles while the American government decides whether or not to deport him back to Albania, from which he fled 11 years ago.
Rado had been happily bobbing along, modeling, acting, writing, dancing in gay bars...until one day he made the all-too-common mistake of taking the Hamptons International Film Festival seriously. He put together a 25-minute short film about his immigration experience and then accidentally entered it into the HIFF.
He further compounded his mistake by trying to attend the HIFF in October, and was summarily scooped up by immigration police and is now out on bail pending a decision. His lawyers are arguing that he should have been arrested for impersonating a serious person who entered his film into a serious film festival.
According to the article, which is well-written by the way, Rado belongs to the minority Catholic population in the largely Muslim Albania, and we needn't think about what might happen to Rado if he should be returned there, after living out of the closet for so long.
So yeah. We pray for Rado. And we hope the story inspires in all of us a lesson about the Hamptons International Film Festival.
If forced to choose between entering and attending the HIFF or being sent to Muslim-controlled Albania...
We would have to think on it for a while.