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Once A Fascist Always A Fascist?

9 years ago

I am going to stick my neck out and predict that the job we’ve given ourselves against Benfica next Thursday is a bit too big, so it appears the only aim left this year is to stay in the Premier League. As if it needed it, this makes next weekend’s derby an even bigger game than it perenially is.

What’s this though, sunderland have got a new manager? But they’re already in huge bother about this, because he’s a fascist, and everyone knows that is definitely not allowed. Let’s get after him.

First off, I have to say I abhor fascism, racism and any kind of right-wing politics that seeks to marginalise minorities and spread hatred. It is indicative of small-minded cowardly attitudes that are nearly always expressed from the security of a mob.

Di Canio has pointed out that his brand of politics is different to the World War 2 version of fascism we immediately think of in this country, being a more watered down version of national pride and anti-immigration beliefs, directed towards maintaining the strength of the Italian people by protecting them from hidden threats from overseas coming to take their jobs and women and destroy their way of life. Ironically, many of the articles I have read condemning the Di Canio appointment have come from the Daily Mail.

I do believe these claims, to an extent. Di Canio doubtless does not believe in ethnic cleansing and may not be directly openly racist and anti-semitic. He claims to be just proud of who he is and seeks to preserve that. I would then ask the following: how many people who will abuse Di Canio for these beliefs hold values that are not too dissimilar from the above?

I am sorry to say that I’ve heard some awful stuff from a minority of Newcastle fans on my travels down the years. Opposition players and fans being attacked for their colour, beliefs and nationality in a humourless and hate-filled manner is not common, but it happens. Often when it does it is to the detriment of the atmosphere, as the surrounding crowd gets stunned into silence by the tirade they’re subjected to.

I would also extend it further to say I’ve seen some right bullies at Newcastle games. The bloke who started on a middle aged man (with his wife) for no reason other than he was drunk, lairy and with 4 of his mates, at Blackburn a few years back was one of the most shameful things I’ve ever seen. The same man will probably be screaming at Di Canio for his beliefs in a regime associated with bully boy tactics and social intolerance next Sunday. As I said, it’s a minority that most football crowds have to suffer, but I just don’t believe any cross-section of society is as decent as the media portrayal is having us believe.

I hope Di Canio does get dog’s abuse next week because he is a visiting manger in an important derby. I also hope a large part of it is because he holds values that have no place in our society, and the majority of people in attendance find it disgusting. If the appointment of Paolo DI Canio has caused people to think about this, then as far as I’m concerned it’s a welcome one.

There is one thought I can’t quite get out of my head though:  would a German lad with a Hitler tattoo have got a job anywhere?



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