Anytime Donald Trump speaks or does anything in public, many on the left are furious. But he’s not alone as his target. Smart conservative women who rise to prominence and excel in their chosen professions seem to be fast catching up with Trump in that regard.
Two American examples come to mind. A quick Internet search will yield criticism, virulence, and unhinged hatred from the left for former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett. Much of this criticism seems to be coming from progressive women who evidently believe that only liberal women are entitled to be praised for breaking glass ceilings.
But as shocking and embarrassing as the hostility towards Haley and Barrett may be to some, it pales in comparison to what Italy’s first female prime minister, Giorgia Meloni, has endured over the past two years. Leftists—again, many of them women—have come after her with a hammer, apparently for committing the ideological crime of conservatism. However, Meloni has remained true to her values and her faith, challenging the many narratives espoused by the left.
They have called her a “fascist,” an “extremist,” a “dictator-in-waiting,” and the second coming of Benito Mussolini. Some critics have even hinted that she is a Nazi 2.0.
If you’ve paid attention to liberal activist “journalism,” it’s no surprise that some of the most venomous attacks directed at Meloni have originated from progressive sites in the US, UK, France and Australia.
Many of the fiercest rants against Meloni have been written by women. One such article was published by The Atlantic in September 2022, titled “The Return of Fascism in Italy.” Then, in February, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation ran a story headlined: “Is Italy’s Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni a Fascist?” The network included a photo of Mussolini giving a Nazi salute as she stood next to Adolf Hitler. It seems like an attempt at defamation; subtlety has never been a hallmark of those on the left.
Of course, a titled liberal definition of “fascism” is millions of Italian voters’ definition of pragmatic, common-sense solutions to the problems that plague their lives and potentially threaten the future well-being of their children.
HBO host Bill Maher recently criticized the liberal media for its meltdowns on conservative European political parties with “far-right” origins. To make his point, Maher used Meloni as an example because she was repeatedly labeled a “far-right” politician and compared in the most incendiary ways to Mussolini.
“The newspapers were apoplectic,” Maher said. “I have read some of his statements. Doesn’t sound like fascism to me. It sounds like the people we’ve heard in this country on the right: ‘We must not forget our roots’ and traditional things like family. And you know, I understand why there is a backlash to some of the things that are happening.”
He also went after liberals for attacking Meloni’s Brothers of Italy party for having “fascist origins.”
“They kept saying: ‘Your party has fascist roots.’ So did the Democrats. They were the party of slavery and Jim Crow; then they got over it. All our parties have roots. We all grow up in corrupt places, and now I see that she is invited to the White House.”
And therein may be the real problem for some liberals, democrats, and far-left activists: they seem petrified of conservative, self-assured, intelligent, and eloquent women. Because? What do they fear? Could it be, as one theory goes, that these women, many of them mothers like Meloni, are able to connect much more effectively with disenfranchised voters based on their gender, their commonalities, their style, their struggles? , his principles, his faith and his success?
The truth is, Giorgia Meloni has an inspiring backstory. She grew up in a working-class neighborhood in Rome and, alone, without wealthy political connections or benefactors, created her own political party, one that, in just four years, went from garnering 4 percent of the vote to winning 26 percent. in the most recent elections.
As Meloni herself said in a speech: “I am the first woman appointed prime minister in the history of Italy. I come from a cultural area that has often been confined to the fringes of the (Italian) republic, and I certainly didn’t get here because of my family background or influential friends. I represent what the English call ‘an underdog.’
Shouldn’t such a storied life story be celebrated, especially by women seeking their rightful place at global power tables that have been dominated by men for centuries?
When I read the disgusting insults and charges that some on the left hurl at Meloni, I wonder if those who yell “Fascist!” they are betraying their own bigotry, insecurities and power-hungry ideological biases.
Douglas MacKinnon, a political and communications consultant, was a White House writer for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George HW Bush, and a former special assistant for policy and communications at the Pentagon during the last three years of the Bush administration.
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