Sunday, 26 December 2010

Italian Students Revive Giuseppe Garibaldi

(Giuseppe Garibaldi - Leghorn)

[Edoardo Montenegro, Turin] - While Italian Government found it hard to pass the Reform of University at the Senate (1), Italian students protesting against it were able to puzzle the media, proving to be politically intelligent (2).

Maurizio Gasparri, President of Silvio Berlusconi's People of Freedom Party at the Senate, had previously declared that the most frantic students should be pre-emptively arrested (3), actually tracing out the law issued by the Fascist Regime of Benito Mussolini in 1926 (4).

According to the proposal, an Italian citizen determined to take part in a protest march might indeed be sentenced up to three years of imprisonment and would pay a fine up to € 40,000 (5).

In spite of any provocation, on Wednesday a peaceful, cheerful and imaginative protest took place all over the country, even if fights with the police flare up in Palermo (6).

In Rome, students avoided the 'red zone' in the inner city, marched through the suburbs with citizens cheering them from the balconies and moved on the highway towards L'Aquila, the city struck by an earthquake on 2009 and still inaccessible (7).

In Turin they dressed up like Giuseppe Garibaldi, the hero who unified the country in 1860, entered the Carignano Palace which was supposed to host the Italian Parliament before the capital moved to Rome and simbolically proclaimed their own counter-reform of University (8).

In Milan they blocked the traffic to read the Constitution, while in Naples they blocked the main railway station (9). At the end of the day, the President of the Republic Giorgio Napolitano granted audience to a delegation of students, explaining that the country has the duty to listen to their opinions (10).

Even though the Italian Senate approved the reform on Thursday (11), the movement of Italian students now looks stronger than ever.


(1) "Bagarre al Senato: la leghista Rosi Mauro perde il controllo, Schifani fa rivotare gli emendamenti approvati",, December 22nd 2010.

(2) Giuseppe D'Avanzo, "La normalità e la patologia",, December 23rd 2010.
(3) James Mackenzie, "Italian minister appeals for calm before protest",, December 20th 2010.

(4) Giuseppe D'Avanzo, "Diritto di polizia",, December 20th 2010.
(5) Luigi Ferrarella, "Poteri dello Stato. Il cortocircuito",, December 20th 2010.

(6) Guy Dinmore, "Berlusconi's woes mount as protests gather pace",, December 22rd 2010.

(7) Paolo Gallori, "Roma invasa dai cortei. Protesta pacifica, con ironia",, December 22nd 2010.

(8) Ottavia Giustetti and Alessandro Contaldo, "Studenti in corteo come Garibaldini",, December 22nd 2010.

(9) "Milano, gli studenti bloccano il traffico e leggono la Costituzione nelle strade",, December 22nd 2010 and "Corteo degli studenti a Napoli. Occupati i binari della Stazione centrale",, December 22nd 2010.

(10) Mario Calabresi, "Napolitano: 'Diamo risposte a una generazione inascoltata'",, December 24th 2010.

(11) Eugenio Bruno, "In porto la riforma degli atenei",, December 24th 2010.

{paulginz, "'Democracy' in Italy: 17 motions on university reform in 3 min",, December 22nd 2010: 


The Italian Senate is voting on amendments to the controversial reform of universities. This reform is causing huge student protests. Rosi Mauro [Vice-Presidentess of the Senate, pictured, from the secessionist party "Lega Padana"] is chairing the vote.


I'm putting to a vote the amendment 6.21. Who's in favour? Who's opposed? Who abstains? It's approved. 6.303. Who's in favour? Who's opposed? It's approved. 6.23. Who's in favour? Who's opposed? It's approved.

Please, colleagues. The presidency [of the senate] has expressed itself, and expressed itself very clearly. I'll continue with the voting. I'll continue. I'll continue with the voting. No, I'll continue with the voting. The presidency has expressed itself; I said that president Schifani [of the Senate] has been informed. Let's continue, let's continue with the voting.

6.304 is inadmissible. 6.305 is inadmissible. 6.306 No [inaudible] 6.306 is inadmissible. 6.307, motion to oppose. Who's in favour? Who's opposed? Who abstains? It's not approved. 6.24 Who's in favour? Who's opposed? Who abstains? It's not approved. 6.308 Who's in favour? Who's opposed? Who abstains? It's not approved.

Please, the presidency has expressed itself. I'll go on with the voting. I'll go on. [You] also [need to have] respect for the Presidency. I gave you an answer. (x2). You should be ashamed of yourselves.
6.26 motion to oppose. Who's in favour? Who's opposed? Who abstains? It's approved. [She got confused and aproved an amendment she didn't want to]. 6.309 Who's in favour? Who's opposed? It's not approved. 6.27 Who's in favour? Who's opposed? Who abstains? It's not approved. [... same thing for 6.28, 6.29, 6.30 and 6.31]. Bravo, bravo, bravo! [/sarcastic] The Presidency has expressed itself.
6.310 who's in favour? Who's opposed? It's not approved.

Colleagues, good, at this point I call 10min recess. [rings bell] We're in recess.}


No comments: