Appeal of students, researchers, professors and Italian citizens to salvage their own fundamental rights

To the Representatives of European and International Political Institutions
To European and International Media

Dear Sirs,

As you may have heard in the past days, the future framework for Scholastic and University Institutions in Italy is being decided. Institutions which are at the basis of the social,civil and cultural structure of every democratic country. They are the key tools necessary for economical progress and social mobility, as well as cornerstones of international competitiveness in a globalized world.

Nobody can deny the necessity of a reform. A reform that prevents waste and personal favoritism, rewards merit, promotes research, and provides incentives to those teachers who put effort,passion and competence into their work. However, the measures chosen and imposed by the Government to the parliamentary opposition, and to its own political majority, have nothing of the breadth of scope that would be needed by these institutions. They are mere budget cuts curtailing funds which are already dangerously slim, and which will not only jeopardize the already precarious future of researchers and teachers, but also of the very schooling institutions, creating the pre-requisites for their irreversible decline.

Of this reality government ministers either do not seem, or do not want, or -one fears- are not capable to grasping the gravity. Rather than openly engaging in a dialogue with expert representatives of the sector, to reach a shared agreement on a reform, they prefer to accuse the democratic opposition of millions of italians as being “terrorists”, “ignorant”,”lazy” and “politically instrumental”.

These accusations hold all the political blindness of somebody who struggles to realize that an entire new movement of opinion stands before them. A movement which is extremely informed, which intervenes on the merit of the measures, which is completely pacific, in no way demagogic or politicized, and which finds methods and locations unseen until now to express its dissent, such as the Facebook “Cause”: A favore dell’istruzione e della ricerca! No alla Legge 133/08 (In Favor of Education and Research!Against law 133/08) at web-page:, now close to reaching 100,000 members.

This is a generation of citizens who have spontaneously united, who discuss and agree on the non-violent forms that the protest could and ought to undertake on the entire national territory, that have a clear vision of what the present conditions and future risks are, and who ,sadly, do not feel represented, in their own interests, by democratic institutions. Instead, they are even forced to feel threatened with physical violence by the declarations of the Prime Minister ( as is documented in the following video in which the PM invokes the intervention of police forces against students who choose to protest : ) as well as being daily and publicly denigrated by him and by the members of his government. Not a day goes by without the government trying to convince the italian population that its children -the “brains” of this country- are stupid and incapable of comprehending the wisdom of his decisions, and, even worse, that they are terrorists whose action must be trampled over before it even begins. It is obvious that the government, aware of the impossibility to honestly defend its own intervention, is attempting with every measure to politicize a movement of opinion which ,in reality, is everything but political, so as to avoid confrontation and arrive directly at a clash. We fear that to reach this goal the irresponsible statements of politicians could turn into the violent action of a mole planted within the opposition.

Because of all of this, because we believe and feel we are able to contribute to the common Well Being of our country (that we love) a great deal more than who governs it is willing to recognize, because we fear that the primary objective of our present parliamentary representatives is the protection of the rights and privileges acquired by past generations rather than the construction of guarantees for the future (not to mention that this attitude is present also in the recent italian position against the european program for the reduction of pollutant emissions.) Because of this, we address an appeal to ask the attention and solidarity of students, teachers, research assistants, of the public opinion, of the political representatives of European and Non-European countries, to protect freedom of thought, speech and expression in Italy. To protect its constitutional laws of parliamentary democracy so that – beginning with the academic system – a decent future can be assured to this country and its people.

A concerned Italian Citizen


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