Mattarella: “The Charter prohibits nefarious ideas of supremacy based on race. The person, not the ethnic group, has the right to protection"
MILAN. «Using today's terminology to speak of a popular but not populist Manzoni». The President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella, a guest of Alessandro Manzoni's house in Milan for the 150th anniversary of the death of the author of the Promessi Sposi, dwells on the more political aspects of Manzoni's work and on the lessons that he can still offer today. «The controversial link that Manzoni establishes between power and public opinion, between justice and widespread sentiments, leads us to reflect, albeit in immeasurably distant times, on the dangers that democratic societies run today in the face of the diffusion of the distorted and aggressive use of social media media, the centralization of the means of communication in the hands of a few, organized disinformation and attempts to systematically manipulate reality» suggests the Head of State.
Mattarella talks about democracy, the relationship between politics and the popular masses, but also about universal rights and international law. «Manzoni's conception of human rights extends to that of international law and relations between states, where we find a lucid and close-knit critique of exaggerated nationalism - explains the Head of State -. Because morality, fraternity and justice must prevail over hatred, selfishness, useless and counterproductive rivalries". In Alessandro Manzoni's vision, Mattarella continues, «it is the person, as a daughter of God, and not the lineage, belonging to an ethnic group or a national community, who is the recipient of universal rights, of guardianship and protection. It is man as such, not only as a member of a nation, as a citizen, who is the bearer of dignity and rights".
Then Mattarella dwells on the role of inspirer of Manzoni, and his constant reflection on justice, on the fundamental papers of the twentieth century. «The Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 represents a fundamental charter, born after the horrors of the Second World War, which identifies the human person in himself, without any difference, as a subject bearer of rights, thus barring the way to nefarious conceptions of supremacy based on race, on belonging, and, ultimately, on oppression, on persecution, on the prevalence of the strongest. Concepts and assumptions that - as we well know - are expressly placed at the basis of our republican Constitution".
In his reasoning on the contemporaneity of Manzoni's figure, as a protagonist artist of Romanticism and as a protagonist politician of the Risorgimento, he also speaks of values often at the center of contemporary political debate. «With regard to Romanticism and the Italian Risorgimento, the triad of God, Country and Family is often mentioned, almost as opposed to the triad of the French Revolution, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity. It is an excessively schematic caesura» says the President of the Republic. Who then concludes: «The romantic and Catholic Manzoni, in truth, does not deny the values of the French Revolution, on the contrary, he approves and shares them, insisting above all on the most neglected one, fraternity. The French Revolution, according to Manzoni, had betrayed these values, because, with Jacobinism, it had been transformed into the ideology of Terror and violence» observes the head of state.