With her party’s victory in parliament, Giorgia Meloni is set to make history as Italy’s first female prime minister.
Because she will be the nation’s first far-right leader since World War II, (heading the Brothers of Italy Party) the media has branded Meloni as a "fascist," even equating her with Benito Mussolini.
Meloni, on the other hand, has vowed to foster an "Italians first" approach and rejected "fascist" labels. She abides by and proclaims the party’s slogan — "God, Homeland, and Family" — as her approach to leading her country.
Many people question how the shift in political parties will alter Italy’s future.
However, Meloni may just be the leader Italy (and many) need today.
In her victory speech, Meloni declared, "If we are called to govern this nation, we will do it for everyone, we will do it for all Italians and we will do it with the aim of uniting the people."
Living in a politically polarized world, Meloni acknowledges that in order to move toward a brighter future, Italy must stay unified and include everyone. A nation can only be strong if it works together, putting differences aside, for a cohesive goal.
Meloni personifies attributes we should all strive to attain.
People who know Meloni have credited her growing support to her resilient resolve.
Coming from humble beginnings, Meloni grew up in a working-class district of the Italian capital and was raised by a single mother. From a young age, Meloni worked hard to get into the political sphere.
At the age of 15, Meloni joined the youth wing of the Movimento Sociale Italiano.
Her political journey would take her to become Italy’s youngest minister when she was handed the youth portfolio in Silvio Berlusconi’s 2008 government.
From there, Meloni co-founded the Brothers of Italy party in 2012, following Berlusconi’s resignation a year earlier. The party was named after the first words of the national anthem.
On Sept. 26, 2022 the morning after her party declared victory, Meloni told members of her party, "When this night is over, we must remember that we are not at the endpoint, we are at the starting point. It is from tomorrow that we must prove our worth."
It took decades of hard work for Meloni to get where she is today, but she acknowledges it’s just the beginning and it will take determination and diligence to get to where they want to go.
In 2019, Meloni would make a speech that would define her. She declared, "I am Giorgia, I am a woman, I am a mother, I am Italian, I am a Christian, and you can’t take that away from me."
The media has criticized Meloni for her conservative political stances and personal beliefs.
However, Meloni teaches us the importance of sticking to our convictions and not wavering under, or to, outside pressures.
Meloni has used her platform to share what she believes in. In particular, her speech at the World Congress of Families gathering in 2019 has gone viral, more recently amongst conservative politicians in the U.S.
In that speech, she said, "We will defend God, country, and family. Those things that disgust people so much. We will do it to defend our freedom. Because we will never be slaves and simple consumers at the mercy of financial speculators."
Her stances — valuing life, family and religious freedom — have troubled leaders around the world, including the White House. However, unlike many leaders today, Meloni won’t shy from what she believes and encourages others to do the same.
Since the beginning, Meloni has touted an "Italian’s first" approach and promised to defend "God, Homeland and Family."
Meloni recognizes how her approach may go against mainstream ideologies. In her autobiography, she wrote, "In short, political correctness — the Gospel that a stateless and rootless elite wants to impose — is the greatest threat to the founding value of identities."
According to Reuters, pollsters have found her success to be in "the steadfastness of uncompromising messaging." Even when her allies joined forces with the center-left democratic party to establish a unity government, she refused to follow.
Through the speeches she has given in the past few years, she continues to proclaim the same message — a strong Italy and a place where people’s freedoms will be safeguarded.
She said, "It will not be the usual 'spaghetti and mandolin' Italy that fails to show up when history beckons." As Meloni has taken center stage, she continues to abide by the same principles and messaging she has promised to Italy from the beginning.
Although time will only tell how Meloni lives up to her values and promises, her track record is promising.
If anything, it’s time people stop criticizing Meloni’s actions and follow her example.
Dr. Kent Ingle serves as the president of Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida, one of the fastest growing private universities in the nation. A champion of innovative educational design, Ingle is the author of "Framework Leadership.'' Read Kent Ingle's Reports — More Here.
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