I’ve always been surprised at the average Italians innate racism, sexism and homophobia. I’m certain there are plenty of enlightened Italians out there but the majority I’ve met are more of the red neck kind.
(Image from the Guardian newspaper online)
A recent example is the debate during the recent European soccer championships about whether or not the Italian Mario Balotelli could be considered an Italian with his Ghanaian origins.
Balotelli is a bad boy of Italian soccer incredibly talented with an arrogant attitude and obviously a huge chip on his shoulder about his African origins.
For those ‘red neck’ Italians B. isn’t Italian simply because he doesn’t have Italian origins. In reality he is just as Italian as anyone else. He was born at Palermo to African parents and after health problems as a newborn he was given into foster care because his parents weren’t able to financially support him and he was eventually adopted a wealthy middle class family from Brescia.
So born and raised in Italy, doesn’t this make him Italian? He also later acquired Italian citizenship. I don’t see how his ethnic origins preclude him from being considered Italian.
Citizenship isn’t about genetics it’s about acquiring language, culture and a way of life. There is no such thing as a pure Italian race, come on Hitler fell into that trap in Germany and we all know that turned out to be a failure.
Being Italian is so much more than the colour of your skin. So Balotelli is Italian my friend!
The unwilling expat