World without Wars and Violence

International Humanist Organisation - Official Website

The winds of change are blowing

The winds of change are blowing

The resounding victory of "yes" to the referendum to repeal the privatization of water, the rejection of nuclear power and a shameful law "ad personam" which would allow Berlusconi to not present himself at trials against him under the guise of a "legal impediment" was an act of civil disobedience which involved 27 million Italians.

For the first time in sixteen years the quorum of 50% + one, necessary for the referendum to be valid, was exceeded (this time it reached 57%) and the percentage of 'yes' to all questions was more than 90%. The Berlusconi government had tried until the last moment to prevent or hinder the consultation, first with a fake cancellation of the rules on nuclear power, leaving the possibility to introduce it in a few years when people would be "less emotional and scared" after the Fukushima tragedy and then asking the voters to stay home and not vote on these unnecessary referendum issues. But among the millions of Italians who went to vote there were many right-wing voters, including regional presidents and mayors who publicly expressed their opposition to nuclear power plants and privatized water.

In addition to the extraordinary participation in the referendum, the most interesting result of this victory lies in how we reached it: a campaign from the base, with hundreds, thousands of initiatives all over Italy organized by committees and associations (not by Left parties, which with some exceptions participated only at the end), an intense and intelligent use of the internet to produce effective, funny and ironic spots and videos and to circumvent the shameful censorship of television and a playful and irreverent spirit that has made the old politicians in government look even more grim, pathetic and out-of-touch.

Like the campaign for local elections a few weeks ago which dealt the first blow to Berlusconi & Co with a victory in Turin and Bologna in the first round and Milan, Cagliari and Naples in the second, the protagonists of this new season are young people. Not only activists, but also creative and able to make fun of themselves and others with hilarious parodies and create a festive atmosphere everywhere, full of commitment and hope not seen in years.
And this is the most exciting thing, which bodes well for the future.