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This is Italy, not the US, but it is absolutely disgusting.

Over at Yahoo

Italy's first black minister, a target of racist slurs since her appointment in April, has condemned a spectator who threw bananas towards her while she was making a speech at a party rally.

Integration minister Cecile Kyenge, who was born in Democratic Republic of Congo, has angered far-right groups with her campaign to make it easier for immigrants to gain Italian citizenship.

Racism isn't just an American thing.  It's international.  But look at some of the other reactions if you hop over the curls:

This is what another Italian politician said:

Kyenge has faced regular insults since becoming minister, often from other politicians. Earlier this month a senior parliamentarian in the anti-immigration Northern League party likened her to an orangutan and only apologized after a storm of criticism.
At least there was a storm of criticism.

Now I bring you some of the disgusting things being posted on the message board:

I'm sure they've seen how our "born on US soil and you become a citizen" has worked out for us. Basically its cultural suicide.

Alphone Sharpini and Jessico Jaconsoni to the rescue.

Maybe Sharpten will move there and start protest

When are they going to start throwing them at The Muslim Whisperer and Eric Holder?

I am surprised that they didn't throw melanzana...(eggplant) also known as the slang......moulinyan.....

A black from the Congo was made an "Integration Minister" in Italy? What were they thinking? No surprise that she wants all born on Italian soil to automatically be Italian citizens, and no surprise that Italians are protesting that - they see how that's worked out in the U.S. I like bananas.

There's an awful lot about Sharpton.  Does anyone know why he'd be a particular target right now?

And do we have any hard information about the RW funding people to sit around and write these nasty messages?

Racism needs to be fought everywhere, everyday.

Tired of politics?  Need to escape?  Try one of my Greek-mythology based novels, either the story of Jocasta: The Mother-Wife of Oedipus or a trilogy about Niobe, or one of the first examples of civil disobedience, Antigone and Creon.  Or, if you like mysteries and/or Jane Austen, treat yourself to
The Highbury Murders: A Mystery Set in the Village of Jane Austen’s Emma very positively reviewed at the Daily Kos Monday Murder Mystery blog.

Originally posted to chloris creator on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 06:38 AM PDT.

Also republished by More and Better Democracies.

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Comment Preferences

  •  So she is black and born in the Congo so...... (3+ / 0-)

    That explains everything about her position on immigration?  I find articles like the one from Yahoo irritating because of their not so subtle racist rants of well he/she is also black so there you go.

  •  These types of racists reactions seem to be (9+ / 0-)

    growing throughout Europe.  As a fan of European football, I've been reading more and more about "fans" throwing bananas and making monkey chants/sounds at black players.  Football organizations/leagues throughout Europe have  penalized teams for the actions of their supporters.  Teams have actually forfeited games, games have been cancelled and on occasion, teams have played in empty stadiums because of these racist acts.  Black players and teams have refused to continue play unless these acts are stopped and people are removed.  It seems the only way to stop these overt acts of racism is to threaten the team the opportunity to play.  It is so sad and ridiculous.  I give these organizations credit for saying this is unacceptable.  Can you imagine the reaction here in the U.S. if say, the NFL, forfeited a game because of the racist actions of fans?  That would probably draw attention to the issue of racism more than anything we have ever seen.  Politicians would be climbing all over each other to have their say on T.V.  I'd bet there would be an immediate Congressional committee (on TV of course) demanding answers.  As you stated:  Racism certainly isn't only an American problem.

    As for why Sharpton seems to be such a lightning rod right now; I think it may be due to how vocal he has been throughout the Zimmerman trial. He has continued to challenge not only the verdict, but the laws that allowed the not guilty verdict.  And he has continued to call for action and protests throughout the country.  I would guess he has really pissed off the racist right wing portion of the country.  The racist right doesn't focus well unless they have a target to unify against.  

  •  Ironic. Apparently, everyone's (6+ / 0-)

    ethnicity is being measured against a very nationalist standard.

    Italians, those who emigrated to the U.S., were themselves humiliatingly penalized for this. They had ethnic slurs flung at them I won't repeat here.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 07:15:01 AM PDT

    •  I read this paraphase of Old Testament wisdom (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Neon Mama, karmsy, cotterperson, unfangus

      on this very subject.  That source would apply to all Jews, Christians and Muslims though I suspect as good as it is the same idea is found in all the writings of people of good will.

      "Welcome the stranger for once we were strangers as well".

      •  Sodom and Gomorah were destroyed (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Tonga 23

        because they failed their duty to welcome strangers.   Sadly, too many clerics have gotten away with claiming other motives for that total destruction.    

        A really carefull reading of the whole series of events -- from Abraham splitting with his brother, his brother becoming a resident there, Abraham coming to rescue townsfolk from them being hauled off as slaves when outsiders defeat them in battle, yet they still distrust the brother when he welcomes and defends the disguised angels, to the brother's daughters raping their father to keep dad's seed alive instead of finding spouses from the nearby town which survived  --->

        none of it really fits with sermons I've endured which blamed everything from interracial marriage to being gay instead of the actual message.

        De fund + de bunk = de EXIT--->>>>>

        by Neon Mama on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 08:34:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Countries where immigration is not a tradition (12+ / 0-)

    have had a much harder time adapting to it.  Average people in these countries tend to be decent and polite to immigrants, but they never see them as being part of the same society.  Not first generation, not fifth, not ever if you look different.

    Part of it is that these countries have never had to develop an abstract idea of themselves, because most of them have had more or less the same population for centuries.  So they knew themselves among strangers by sight alone.

    In the US, we see the same thing in isolated rural areas and states that aren't very economically or culturally dynamic - so we get the right-wing ODS nutbar contingent who loses their minds over seeing a black face in the Oval Office.  Imagine that magnified to a whole country.

    That's what I think people don't get about Europe: Its government bureaucracies may be more diligent about discouraging racism, but the people are culturally vastly more racist because they haven't had time to adapt to the concepts that have always been part of our country (even before they were understood as such).

    The Irish consider Irishness to require being white, period, full stop.  Same with "Italianness" and "Germanness."  If a black man were born there, spoke their language perfectly, was a perfect stereotypical example of their culture except for their body shape and color, they would still say that person is imitating them rather than actually being one of them.

    American narcissism (and also Brazilian to some extent) actually works to our advantage in this sense, because white Americans love to be copied, so the ego is tickled to see people of many races speaking unaccented US English and behaving exactly as we do.  Kids grow up seeing that and their idea of Americanism becomes abstract rather than anatomical.  But in these other cultures, they feel the opposite - like something is being taken from them.

    Some countries will adapt well to immigration and discover a sense of dynamism in themselves.  Britain is doing relatively well, reactionary elements notwithstanding.  Others will always struggle with it, and Germany seems like a country that sees the bad instincts in itself and tries to fight them with mixed results.  And a few will just never accept it.  Italy, ironically, is probably in the third group - not because they're rigidly ideological, but the opposite: Because they can passive-aggressively endure anything while holding on to prejudices literally forever.

    •  I am fascinated by your perspective. Top comment! (6+ / 0-)

      The word dynamism was a gift to me as I search how to express the wonder of the melting pot.  I see us moving more and more toward full inclusion and respect for our whole national community which means fuller utilization of that dynamism component.  The John Birch Society reaction to our first black president is awful in many ways but it has provided us all with our next object lesson.

      We need to continue our efforts to form a more perfect union.  We need to let each other know we are valued.  We need to capitalize on our tradition of new citizens being incorporated all the time and allow everyone to reach their potential in our national community to the benefit of all.  No holding people down but rather lifting them up.  We all do better when we all do better.  E pluribus unum!

    •  We may be better in the US but (3+ / 0-)

      then again we went through a few hundred years of adjustment. And for much of it we kept black people in chains. I think these more racially homogenous European countries are going to have some growing pains over the coming decades as their societies get more diverse. It's unfortunate, but inevitable.

    •  Granted the Northern League would be racist even (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      if there were no immigrants. This is the same bunch who thinks the southern italians are an inferior race. With people like this- they are not happy unless they have someone to discriminate against.

  •  the Sharpton thing is easy: he's got a TV show. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueoregon, cotterperson

    This comment is dedicated to my mellow Adept2U and his Uncle Marcus

    by mallyroyal on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 08:01:41 AM PDT

  •  she's not the only one (4+ / 0-)

    Mario Balotelli is a striker for both Milan and for the Italian National Team.

    His natural parents wereThomas and Rose Barwuah, Ghanaian Christians living in Palermo Sicily at the time he was born. When his parents moved to the mainland, for a while he was entrusted to another family during the week but return to his natural parents on weekends.  Eventually his natural parents agreed to surrender custody and Silvia and Francesco Balotelli became his foster parents.  They did not legally adopt him, so even though he had been born in Italy he had to wait for his 18th birthday until he could petition for Italian citizenship.   By the way, the Balotellis are of Italian Jewish heritage.

    When Mario became famous, his natural parents tried to claim him, he blew them off, claiming they were glory hunting.

    Important to note that in Italy being born there does not automatically entitle you to citizenship.

    OF course there is a difference, in that Balotelli is very undisciplined as a player and as a person, and has a long record of being carded -  yellow and red - so despite his incredible talent there are those who can claim that they are not being racist in demeaning him.

    It is however worth noting that it was an Italian player who made a an insulting remark to Zinadine Zidane, the incredibly talented midfielder for France in the middle of the last decade (including being world footballer of the year).  He was born in France of Algerian descent.   Marco Materazzi made the remarks, which Zidane claimed insulted both his mother and sister,  and Zidane responded emotionally by headbutting him, thus getting ejected.  This was the Final game of the 2006 World Cup, which Italy went on to win 1-0.

    Make of all this what you will.

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 08:27:07 AM PDT

    •  That head butt was unreal. While I don't think (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tonga 23

      insulting a persons family is a very cool thing to do, getting tossed from the World Cup Final and costing your team the game, seems a little selfish.  However, it seemed the French people understood and didn't hold it against him.  Amazing how cultures are so different.  Could you imagine New England fans forgiving Tom Brady for getting tossed out of the Super Bowl because he felt insulted.  Different worlds.  

      And Balotelli is an unbelievable footballer.  But he does need to grow up.  He doesn't seem to always have the teams best intentions in his heart and he doesn't listen well to his coaches.  However, I think he has acted incredibly mature in the face of the racism he has received. He has made it clear he will walk off the pitch before allowing others to mock him and his teammates seem very supportive.  It is so sad to see this beautiful game ruined by these racist punks.

    •  I have seen Balotelli play (0+ / 0-)

      even if only on TV. Astonishing talent.

      The specific form of racism that he confronts during games is people in the stands chanting against him.

      “There are no black Italians!”

      and worse.

      He has been known to take off his shirt after a notable goal to show off his blackness, taking a yellow card penalty in the process.

      Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

      by Mokurai on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 10:29:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Are Italians Considered "White" Now? nt (0+ / 0-)

    Men are so necessarily mad that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 12:09:55 PM PDT

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