(ADW) Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Thursday, March 10, at the historic high school in Via delle Milizie 30 in Rome, killing a 16-year-old boy.
During the entrance to the school, while many students entered the classrooms, a group of about ten children (some high school and some not) showed up to distribute brochures about the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
This is the Generation Popolare, a neo-fascist organization from the north of Rome that has been trying for some months to enter Roman schools, with topics like European sovereignty and a new (more dignified) form of feminism.
Giovanni, a boy in his senior year of high school, as well as a member of the Mamiani Self-Organized Collective, tells us: “I, along with several other members of the collective, asked him to leave, and tried to explain to them that our school will always and in any case reject their ideas and that historical Mamiani was and always will be a stronghold of militant anti-fascism in the north of Rome.
In fact, it is important to remember that the high school in the residential area of Prati belonged to those who in ’68 created the wave of professions that then spread throughout Italy. A historically left-wing high school, as well as a cultural center, where ideals such as anti-fascism must be taught and respected on the agenda.
A rapid escalation prompted those concerned to quickly switch from insult to physical assault. Giovanni continued: “At that time the first pressure started and after ten seconds, there were about ten of them, they felt in power using their right hands. At that time the only defense was the attack: we reacted and but a sixteen-year-old boy, who belongs to our collective, who tried to help a friend of his, who was blocked by two of them during the escape, was violently slapped in the face: nine days forecast » .
A violent attack thus disrupted the normal course of Mamiani school week, but the young men and women of the collective had clear ideas about what had happened: “We felt obliged to react even to the evil ones in the face of their aggression first. . verbally and then physically; we had to forgive them. But we want to emphasize that violence in any form will never be compatible with our ideals, other than them, and that we will justify it only in the case of defense. A few things can no longer be tolerated ».
Daily battle for Mamiani students; In fact, it is not the first time that fascist organizations have attempted to approach the school community of that high school. There have been several episodes in recent years and months in which friction has led to confrontations and conflicts.
In fact, John continued: “This episode is one of many. Certainly the most significant was the last night of the occupation last year, when they arrived. [i gruppi neofascisti ndr] with sticks and threw a firework into the yard, looking across a street. Last week, probably student action, she tore up the anti-war banner we had hung up at night and showed it on flyers the next day; with a provocative attitude, of course, but certainly more peaceful than a Thursday ”.
But this conflict does not only take place in Mamiani Lycée, so much so that some schools in the capital feel compelled to confront this kind of presence: “At city level, in the last two years, we have seen an attempt. These neo-fascist organizations not only expand our school; they are in fact using brochures and, in some cases, even verbal aggression even against Russell, Darwin and Colonna. [altre scuole superiori della capitale, ndr]”
It becomes impossible, therefore, not to ask us what role the educational institute has in the face of these events. Giovanni tells us that in Liceo Mamiani there has always been a great deal of solidarity on the part of the main party vis-à-vis the anti-fascist position of its collective, even if it is expressed privately and verbally.
In fact, it has happened more than once that she herself has invited students not to react to the fascist attacks, trying to limit the violence between students without ever exposing themselves too much.
On the other hand, it is clear that the political management of the school is very far from the idea of a transversal cultural education, which can educate students not only to an anti-fascist reality, but also an ecological and transfeminist one.
After two years of pandemic, students experience a lack of institutional awareness about safety and internships, adequate pandemic management, or deep civic and sexual education.
All elements which, as far as various aspects of society are concerned, are inextricably linked, illuminating the gaps which the formation has in the young generations.
It is important that institutions also take responsibility for promoting values such as anti-fascism, anti-racism and anti-sexism in the classroom, taking a clear position alongside those who oppose neo-fascist impulses on cultural sites such as schools every day. Just like the kids who defended their school on Thursday against a dusty and extremist ideology like fascism.
Giovanni concludes: “We want to reiterate that fascist propaganda is never tolerated and we will always respond with the militant anti-fascism that distinguishes us, like Mamiani and Lupa Scuole in Lotta”. An anti-fascist garrison was called yesterday and a public meeting was called at 3pm right in front of the Mamiani. Another important sign that the school is a place free from hatred and violence and must continue to be.
Cover image fb Page Mamiani self-organized collective