After surviving three assassination plots to kill him, Rosario Crocetta has just been elected as the first openly gay governor of Sicily
Crocetta is representing a coalition of Italy’s center-left Democratic party and the Catholic UDC Party. He just beat out Nello Musumeci, who was representing the right-wing party of premier Silvio Berlusconi.
A devout Catholic, Crocetta has long claimed that southern Italy is much more relaxed about gay politicians than appearances indicate. He stated:
“There is a great respect for the indiviual, making it less homophobic than the north.”
This hasn’t stopped the candidate from making a few enemies though. When he was elected mayor of Gela in 2008, Crocetta convinces local business to stop paying protection money to the mafia, claiming that coming out showed him the severe oppression Sicily was under from mafia control. A mob boss, who hired a Lithuanian assassin for a failed bid to kill the mayor was less than tolerant of his sexual orientation. The wiretapped call recorded him calling Crocetta “this queer communist”.
Not only is it a marked achievement that Crocetta was elected as an openly gay politician, he is also the first left wing candidate to win and the first anti-mafia candidate to win.
“Today is more than an election result,” Crocetta says, ” It is a date with history.”
The newly elected governor or president of Sicily as it is sometimes called has a long record as champion of government reform. His role as leader in Sicily’s anti mafia movement played a key role in garnering many of the votes in Gela.
Locals defend the courageous politician, one magistrate saying:
“The clans may ridicule Crocetta’s sexuality, but it’s the backing he gave businesses that refuse to pay protection that really drove them mad.”
The plucky candidate has suggested that a surprising number of members of the mafia clan Cosa Nostra are homosexuals. ”The idea that the mafia is all church, home, and shotguns make me laugh.”
Magistrate Antonio Ingroia of Palermo agreed with Crocetta’s assertion, adding that he believes that there are several head mafiosos who are gay. “It remains taboo, because they’re afraid of being ejected from the mob.”
Whatever the case may be, our sincerest congratulations go out to the newly elected official, Governor Rosario Crocetta.
Do you think that sexual orientation should play a factor in the election of a politician? Why or why not? Tell us in the comments below!