Feminist Icons | Rita Borsellino
Dear Rita Borsellino,
Our hearts go out to you. You’re 60 years old but you’re brutally taking on the whole of the bloody Mafia in order to become Sicily’s next leader and eradicate mafia influence for ever. A true revolutionary!
In a world where sicilian politicians don’t travel with their family because they know they are likely to die at the hands of the mafia, you bravely choose not to have bodyguards. Sicily wants change! And pretty much all of Sicily wants you.
We think you will become the next president of Sicily. But as an enemy of the mafia, we don’t know how long you will survive.
Mookychick loves you for your courage, Rita Borsellino! Viva Rita! Rita Presidente!
respectfully, Mookychick xxx
Best Known For:
Her revolutionary campaign banners. White sheets with ‘Rita Presidente’ written on in thick red paint like blood. A famous Sicilian author made an anti-mafia satire called ‘Mafiopolis’ and bits of his body were found by friends after he was strapped down to a railway line, bound in dynamite and blown up. The women of Sicily formed a ‘committee of sheets’ and hung sheets out of their windows to protest this outrage. Rita’s campaign honours this act of rebellion.
Least Known For:
Being conniving or snakey. Sicilians like her because she is a woman who is normal. They know they can trust her.
Through the roof. Artists can take care of our souls, but it is so difficult to do something in politics to make a real difference: If Rita Borsellino succeeds in becoming President of Sicily and staying alive, she could change a whole country…
Best Rita Borsellino Quotes:
I’m feeling happy and sad and completely out of control
Patronage is illegality (about the government and the mafia swapping favours)
(translated rather weirdly by google)
Rita Borsellino’s background:
It’s all looking really ugly at the moment in Sicily, birthplace of the mafia. People say Sicilians have a fatalistic streak because they have put up with the mafia controlling the government for so long. At first, everyone turned a blind eye to the mafia because it looked like they were only killing themselves. Now, if you walk in Sicily you will see firebombed shops and cars belonging to people who refused to pay protection money or crossed the mafia in some way.
All politicians in Sicily cannot walk anywhere without their bodyguards. They never let their wives and children walk with them down streets or travel with them in a car. The minute they are in power, they know they will be on someone’s death list.
Sicily is also a big web of intrigue, with everyone in each other’s pockets. The current president, Cuffaro, is today on trial for aiding the mafia and warning Cosa Nostra bosses when police heat was coming their way. We all love the romanticism of the mafia, but this is no way to live. We should expect more of our leaders… much more.
Rita Borsellino has come to change all this! She is not your usual Sicilian politician, oh no! She is in her 60s, a grandmother, an ex-chemist. She’s an outsider in the campaign race, with no political debts to pay. She is tiny and vulnerable but brave. Ever since her brother was assassinated by the mafia she has decided to take matters into her own hands and is battling to become the next president.
Rita Borsellino has no bodyguards at her campaign office- all her campaign money is spent on the campaign itself. She walks the streets and gives talks at schools. She’s anti-mafia but also stresses environmental issues, tolerance of foreigners, more benefits, better healthcare and awareness in schools. She’s determined to become Sicily’s next leader and eradicate the power of the mafia for ever, and so far it’s a mystery while she’s still alive. Her followers hope that if she cleans up the country a bit, they might give her a bit of terriotry and let her live.
The thing is, the mafia pride themselves on only killing once they think there’s no other option. first they isolate you, then they kill you. They’ll wait until (or when) Rita Borsellino is in power, and once they feel they cannot control her by infiltrating her organisation, they will unfortunately strike.