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Once again this year, in the midst of summer, under the pleasant and cool shade of a tree, my mind leads me to gaze and contemplate, taking the proper distance of a summer break, at the world that stands in the background and awaits us on the threshold of autumn. I have often followed the news of politics and culture in these heated hours because so many things have happened, so many words have been spoken, so many thoughts have been normalized, and there have been so many improper reactions that ignoring all this was simply not possible.

And so, I find myself asking some questions. I wonder if governmental fascism and the fascism of thoughts circulating among people are our most bitter enemy. Certainly, the violence, the stupidity, and the arrogance of certain things done and said by multiple individuals, whether institutional or not, would seem to embody public enemy number one, the one that’s easy to spot, the one where there are no shades of opinion, only black-and-white views.

I think about historical revisionism, ideas about women and relationships, the economy, labor policies, migrants, healthcare, rights, environmental emergencies, in a word, ideas about the world. It might seem easy to say “it doesn’t exist,” “what are you talking about,” “it’s not like that,” “what you’re saying is violent,” “what you’re saying is false,” in short, “NO.”

It might seem that way, but evidently it’s not. Something is missing in this scenario. Never before, as far back as I can remember and as long as I’ve been interested in current events, have I encountered such a limping democracy that, precisely because it limps, perhaps cannot even be called a democracy. I, at least, don’t see the opposition, and if you see it, maybe you can explain it to me.

What I see is a divided front, but above all, it’s filled with very high, very cultured, very agreeable words—politically correct words—but they ring hollow because they are just words devoid of content now. Maybe they’re devoid of something else, maybe they lack identity.

The ultimate question is, “what is the left?” Is it a movement opposing stagnation? Is it a reaction to a reactionary proposal with an evolutionary one? Is it opposition? Is it saying NO?

Well, maybe this is the connection with this psychology and related blog you’re reading. The ability to say NO in opposition to violence is what’s missing now. To truly say NO, to be effective and clear, a certain identity is necessary—one that, without overthinking, without studying it in books or at the most prestigious university, allows you to react to the inhuman in a definite, almost ruthless, and unambiguous manner.

So, I return to my question, modifying it a bit: is the worst enemy we have the violent one or the one who can no longer say NO to this violence? Apathy doesn’t cure itself. If someone who can see it and fight it is missing, we’re in trouble. In a way, it’s like being colluding with that apathy, it’s like having it within.

I believe this is what afflicts what we call the left. For this reason, certain discussions sound empty and false. For this reason, people don’t line up to say, “Today, I’m going to the polls and voting.” For this reason, quite astonishingly, certain discussions have been normalized and are considered “normal personal opinions that we should respect because we should be kind and respect everyone.”

So, the most dangerous enemy is the lack of identity that allows fascisms to take shape. These are my reflections under the trees: perhaps there was little shade and the sun got to my head.

Maria Giubettini


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Credits by: Elisa Dri