My Late Grandfather's Message Towards Racism and Interracial/Interfaith Relationships

t-8900

The stereotype of "Old White Men" being racist is sadly very true but it's not just "Old White Men" who are racist. Racism comes from all walks of life from every continent on Earth. We are in a world full of hate when there's no reason to continue it. It is my belief that our life's purpose is to see past the exterior of others and find the heart in that person, their soul, and bond with each and every one of them in some way. Sadly we've come into a world warped with corrupting and wickedness which tries to refuse the recognition of basic humanity to minorities. This isn't a problem only from "Whites" to "Blacks", nor is it something that only the USA or European nations are guilty of. Sadly this is a rampant idea that is happening on every continent and in every country. Weather you are white, black, brown, yellow, red, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Taoist, Jewish, Pagan, Conservative, Liberal, Libertarian, Moderate, A Political, Tall, Short, Skinny, Fat, Athletic, Muscular, Straight, Homosexual, Bi Sexual, Trans, or any and everything in between you've faced some level of prejudice. You need to remember those times when you were trashed for being who you are and what you are and use that to empathize with others and find commonality instead of division.

A situation occurred when I was about 15 years old where a bunch of old men sat around a table together with me and we were watching football. Out of everyone my grandfather was the only person who had been raised on a Fascist Dictatorship without any family other than a sister he barely saw. He was raised be the Fascist state of Italy under Benito Mussolini, born in 1924 just 2 years after Il Duce first came to power. My grandfather was raised in a Catholic Orphanage by nuns. Sadly the Catholic Church was all too eager and willing to allow Fascist doctrine into their learning facilities. As we do here in the USA they had to stand for a pledge of allegiance. Only this one was to the Fascist state of Italy and the opening was, "Mussolini is always right". My grandfather was raised by the regime to be a hardened killing machine without emotion or remorse. But they failed to realize that no amount of conditioning can remove human emotion from the equation.

In 1942 my my grandfather was forced into the Fascist Regime's military service. You either joined or you and your family would be executed, that's how it was. You complied or they marched you out front of your house and shot you and your wives and children in the heads. You did what you were told, that's just how it was. People get so hung up on who fought for which side without ever knowing what it was really like for people on the other side. The Fascists used all kinds of methods to kill including public hangings and boiling people alive. My grandfather saw the hell of the Eastern Front. His battalion from Torino was responsible for wiping out a Russian force of 11,000 strong in just 2 days. My grandfather went on to tell me he hated doing what he did, he took no pleasure in it but it was a fight for his life and that of his friends he made.

Back to that day at the table with all the men. A commercial came on of Tyra Banks as well as another one of a black woman in a lotion commercial. These men said abhorrent things that I'll never repeat because they should never be said about a black woman, any woman, or any human being for that matter. My grandfather said to me then and there not to listen to these men. They were completely wrong and he said that no matter who I ended up with I should be happy. I remember his words in his strong Northern Piemontese accent:

"My little buddy, don't listen to them they have no idea what they are talking about. Don't ever choose a woman for her appearance alone. Skin color doesn't matter. There are plenty of beautiful women of every race, just follow your heart. Don't listen to what others say about your woman or your relationship with her. Make sure she loves you and treats you good and you her, nothing else matters in this world. Love is the most important thing in this world. When you have it, grab it with both hands and don't you ever let it go. Just find a woman who makes you happy and is loyal to you and nothing else matters."

So my question to us here in America is this: How is it a man who had to fight under a fascist dictatorship, alongside nazis, being apart of a battle where tens of thousands of men lost their lives was able to know this and believe this and yet we live in a country where all races and colors live side by side and are born in the same delivery rooms, and sleep peacefully in the same nurseries together and STILL have so many racial divisions? How can we be so hateful in this country to one another while someone like my grandfather from day one never bought into this crock of racist s***? We're doing it wrong America, we're failing ourselves, our kids, and we need to change this. If you harbor a racist heart (and only you know if you do deep down then you need to change that. It's my firm believe that you are failing at life. Get with it, get exposed to other people and cultures, actually TALK to people and break bread with them. It's not hard just treat your fellow human being well and recognize you are both hurting from these situations and mindsets. That's it, have a good day everyone!

My Late Grandfathers Message Towards Racism and Interracial/Interfaith Relationships

Veteran of Operation Barbarossa, Fascist Defector, Royalist Soldier, Apprehender of Benito Mussolini, Hero Of To Allied Powers, A Loyal Husband and Father, and amazing friend and Grandfather!

My Late Grandfathers Message Towards Racism and Interracial/Interfaith Relationships
My Late Grandfather's Message Towards Racism and Interracial/Interfaith Relationships
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Most Helpful Girl

  • lilyanony1
    Rip grandad.
    He seemed like a very intelligent and kind man.

    Much like you this racism stuff I find ridiculous.
    It's sad that in 2021 this conversation is still going on. I always loved people and cultures but in recent years I've withdrawn.
    I am finding that being a black woman I feel like I stick out again. Where as I blended into society.
    I liked being a woman not a black woman.

    We can get through this and we will.
    Change is coming. I am hoping the focus of global warming. Fuel prices etc will act as a distraction to the nonsense that is skin colour.
    Is this still revelant?
    • t-8900

      It's definitely always going to be a grass roots group effort that brings people closer. Skin color is absolutely irrelevant and it's just sad that everyone can't see it. Thankfully most people I personally know have no issues with it. As far as you being seen as a woman and not a black woman I absolutely love that mindset! We sadly still have Klan rallies where I live in Maryland. The good news is I think the last rally only had about 13 attendees and all of them were old men basically close to life support. I dont celebrate the death of them but I do celebrate the death of their movement.

    • Thank you for your kindness and giving me mho x

    • t-8900

      It was well deserved and I'm glad you see past all the Bs in the world 🙏

Most Helpful Guy

  • ADFSDF1996
    Despite being on the axis side, your grandfather had higher morals than many of the allied soldiers who were hypocrites.

    Many of those US GIs that fought in WWII viewed some of their fellow country men as “enemies” simply because they were of Japanese, German or Italian ancestry. They refused to differentiate Ethnicity and nationality.
    Is this still revelant?
    • t-8900

      they refused to recognize basic humanity is what it was. Not many Americans know about the Biscari Massacre. Heck they dont know about the 1891 Massacre in New Orleans Either

    • Thanks for most helpful opinion

    • t-8900

      I loved every word of what you had to say. thank you for the lovely response!

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  • WhiteSteve
    Good shit, thanks for sharing the story.

    Funny you mention it, because just the other day, my dad — who’s almost 90, big American Exceptionalist, “the world should be kissing our ass and being thankful we’re here for the rest of time because we helped take down that Hitler guy, so everything else we do must automatically be noble and correct too”-attitude — …he was watching a YouTube video about WWII, and this particular piece was noting that, later down the line, there would be these reunions at battle sites, by soldiers from both sides, and sometimes, you’d have American or Allied vets mingling with guys who fought for the Nazis. They’d get to being buddies, and it’s like they wouldn’t have shot each other in the head without thinking twice about it in the 1940s, these guys could’ve even killed the very friends everyone came to respectively reminisce on at these sites. And I only saw a minute or two, but I was really struck by something a German soldier said, not that I didn’t believe it before, but more like “Even THIS GUY gets it, a fucking Nazi soldier”….. he says, as an elderly man, “The problem is we look at ourselves the wrong way. We see ourselves as Germans, as Italians, as Americans, as English…. and we’re not, we’re all just humans.” It was refreshing to hear, particularly from that kind of source, but it makes you a little sad too, like maybe you spend your foolish youth fighting tooth and nail for some belief or some entity, risk your life, take others’ lives, see your friends’ lives taken right in front of you…. then the wisdom of old age hits and you’re like “jesus…. what the FUCK were we thinking? What kind of goals and values were we holding? Have I lived my life all wrong?”
    • t-8900

      those later year epiphanies will hit you hard. If you have someone wise around to save you from wasting you life on shit that never mattered you will be more wholesome and happy for it. Thanks for sharing!

  • FinalFantasyBro
    Your grandfather definitely sounds like a very wise old man, I agree I wish nobody didn't face discrimination but unfortunately it would still be considered unrealistic. But I don't discriminate against others for simply being different from me, as a black male while black racism is still an unfortunate issue I wouldn't let that stop me from making me see the good in others well obviously the nice men and nice women. because obviously jerks do exist in the world.
    • t-8900

      I'm glad you took the time to read this. I have a lot of Mytakes incoming over the next week. They are long reads but near and dear to my heart. Please stay tuned if you enjoy them. Coming at y'all raw and real with full exposure.

    • Trust me I definitely enjoyed the whole thing I definitely glad to follow you it's rare knowing a non racist white person. No offense by the way, I just usually come across racist people unfortunately.

    • t-8900

      it's sad and sometimes i wonder if i say things unknowingly that might hurt someone. I used to do that a lot in my youth when i had less of a filter and blabbed before thinking. If I ever say something like that that hurt your feelings never hesitate to let me know so i can reassess my thought process and try to be a better person. thanks for your kind words and I'm glad I found you on Gag.

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  • CrazyGirl2
    I think the thing here to focus on is not how is it that one old man raised under fascism can see humans, all humans, as just that… HUMANS! But rather that of ALL the old men there ONLY 1 stood up for what is right!
    Today in America, where the “old” were mid to late teenagers in the 60s I’d bet at least HALF, likely more will stand-up for what is right, and in 20 years when the old men will have come of age in the 80s, then maybe 90% will stand up and say that language and behavior is unacceptable!
    Finally, when MY generation reach old age, nobody will believe that type of behavior is acceptable! Nobody said the US was a “perfect union” they said we strive to be a “MORE perfect union” and to go from one little old man from a fascist country, to half in 20 years, THATS PROGRESS! And to go from half to all, in just another 40 years THATS PROGRESS! Because, while people love to shit on the US for 150 yr old sins, ask yourself why? Why, when RIGHT NOW there is ethnic slavery in China. RIGHT NOW!
    Slavery exists in Africa RIGHT NOW!
    There are slaves, RIGHT NOW in Russia, and they get those slaves from N. Korea!
    Girls who look JUST like me R being kept as sex slaves all over the world RIGHT NOW!
    I don’t know what the answer is, but I do know that as long as they keep us focused on what ended here 150 years ago, when we KNOW we’ve had amazing progress, we are not looking to end the slavery that is STILL happening, RIGHT NOW!
    • That is really sad to hear about slavery still happening all over the world.

    • @FinalFantasyBro Yeah, right! Kinda puts things in perspective, when you hear someone say that America is “the most racist country on earth!” AND… We are the only country on earth to fight a civil war to END slavery!

    • Yep that is true our country might not be perfect but at least it better than living in Afghanistan. I heard that most young girls get sold into sexual slavery over there plus you have to deal with Al Quida as well.

  • jshm2
    You should have done this as a "Mytake" kiddo.

    As for your point. Some people are just pricks who revel in hating others. Calling them "racist" is being nice to them as you're not pointing out the many other flaws and evil they actually engage in.

    Like calling Jeffery Dahmer a "bad driver".
    • t-8900

      yeah it is a mytake actually. ^^

  • FictionalCharacter
    All military men back in the day tried different color pussy. So of coarse you’re going to hear your grandpa say appreciate every race/woman.
  • 888theGreat
    If US was still mostly Racist , you would see black people hanging from trees everywhere. No interracial dating would be allowed. Black people would not have drivers license, car , or a home. No college degrees. No TV network of their own, no acting or singing contracts. Would have their own professional sports leagues. No voting.
  • hahahmm
    "As we do here in the USA they had to stand for a pledge of allegiance." -- There sort of is a difference between just saying a pledge and actually being forced to execute people who disagree with the political party in power. The impression I have is that groups like Catholic churches/schools usually go along with the local government because if they didn't the church & school would 'accidentally' be burned down and teachers would vanish into unmarked graves and they figured that they'd be less able to have any influence if that happened. I'm not saying I would condone going along with just anything tho.. there's a line somewhere that shouldn't be crossed for sure.

    As far as your grandfather: he was right. But I wouldn't say there aren't lots of people who know what he knew in the U. S. I'd also say culture is important. If someone has the wrong cultural beliefs, regardless of skin color then they're a bad match for you. So there's good & bad matches in all races.
    • t-8900

      ah I wasn't comparing the pledge to the things they did in fascist italy. I was doing a compare and contrast. You know how so many people try to say we live in a fascist state? I'm trying to like give insight to what fascism is really like and make people see the difference. But if you ask me if the Pope condemned Mussolini and declared him an Anti Christ then Il Duce would have been screwed. And to your last point sure, of course. But I think it comes down to how zealous and closed minded they'd need to be for that to be the main issue to drive a wedge. I guess it depends on how seriously that affects their own identity as an individual but from the broad aspect of it I think it's not what should be highlighted when first meeting someone. It's only if they are not willing to adapt, that's when things change and maybe you cut them loose. I associate that more with tribalism, the same kind that gave rise to fascism if i'm just being honest. Not to the same degree, perhaps. But still of a similar nature.

    • hahahmm

      Okay about the pledge thing. " if the Pope condemned Mussolini and declared him an Anti Christ then Il Duce would have been screwed" - I found this: "When Mussolini ignored the pope’s warning that the ban on racially mixed marriages was in violation of the concordat, the ailing Pius made a final gesture to secure Mussolini’s attention. The pope invited bishops and cardinals to attend a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Lateran Agreements on February 11th, 1939, when he planned to speak out against fascist violation of the concordat. The pope died the day before the scheduled celebration, however.

      Pacelli took charge of the Vatican on the death of the pope, destroyed copies of the pope’s prepared speech and returned the draft of the encyclical against racism to LaFarge. In March 1939 Pacelli was elected pope, styling himself Pius XII in deference to his predecessor. Yet he also moved to change the direction of the papacy by restoring good relations with the fascist regime, just as he took the initiative to improve relations with Hitler’s Germany." www.irishtimes.com/.../...-and-mussolini-1.1803692

      Quite a coincidence that the pope died the same day he was going to go against Mussolini! But I haven't looked into it beyond the web page I linked.

    • t-8900

      Given what the Fascist Party of Italy did and what they were capable of doing I could totally believe it was an inside job sanctioned by Il Duce or Ciano perhaps. Maybe that's why it happened. But my grandfather had spent his entire childhood doing that pledge and he would have been 15 by this point. That said yeah I suppose it's never that simple.

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