Jack Wolfsohn | Head Editor
September 29th, 2022
History has a tendency to repeat itself.
In 1922, Mussolini became the prime minister, then in 1925, a fascist dictator. Mussolini claimed that fascism would end political corruption and labor strife while maintaining capitalism and private property. This incorporation of contradictions into massive government dictatorship created an ultranationalistic and authoritarian Italy that sided with the Nazis’ views in WWII. Also, he really wanted the trains to run on time.
It was during this time that the term “fascism” was actually coined—meaning that fascism as a concept originated in Italy. Additionally, “fascism” is derived from the word “fascio”, which comes from the Roman “fasces” and it’s the bundle of wood held by leaders to represent power and absolute executive authority.
“Fascist is really the perfect word to describe Mussolini’s dictatorship in Italy,” senior Christian McCleary said.
This week, Giorgia Meloni was elected Prime Minister of Italy. Her party, the Brothers of Italy, is a descendant of the party founded by Mussolini and his allies. The logo on her flag is even the same as Mussolini’s party. She is a textbook fascist.
She describes herself as a “Christian who defends God, the Fatherland, and family.” Opposed to abortion; euthanasia; and to partnerships, marriages, and parenting by same-sex couples. At the anti-LGBTQ demonstration in Italy called “Family Day,” she declared herself against LGBTQ adoption.
After Meloni’s victory, Hillary Clinton was asked how she felt about Meloni and she said that “every time a woman is elected to head of state or government, that is a step forward.” I understand that it is difficult for some to accept this seemingly “step forward” as a literal “step backward” but by not doing so, they are siding with fascist leaders like Meloni.
“Even though electing a woman into a position of power is progress, her also being a fascist is unsettling,” senior Kian Jadbabaei said.
Democrats may be forced to compromise or qualify her ideas because if they were outwardly against her or the free market capitalism which accompanies fascism, they would be arguing against their own ideologies. If they do adamantly oppose her, they’d be labeled as socialists or communists, as the only true opposers of fascism are anti-capitalists.
In some of her past speeches, she advocated for the end of neo-colonialism in African countries. Sounds amazing. However, she wants to stop the destabilization of these countries not because they deserve to be liberated, but because destabilizing them creates migrants who go to Italy. She has partnered with other far-right politicians in Italy who have spent years demonizing refugees, migrants, and other ethnic minority groups.
While Italian politics are largely irrelevant to the US, the fact that Meloni campaigned on “Christian values” just shows reactionary conservatives and the neo-fascists in America that they need to try harder.