The journalist, companion of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni: “I used an inappropriate term, I’m not racist”
Andrea Giambruno, journalist for Rete4 and companion of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, apologizes for the use of the term “transhumance” in relation to the movements of migrants. “During Friday’s episode of Diario del giorno, dedicated to the complex phenomenon of illegal immigration, I used a decidedly inappropriate term. I apologize, to these people, to the public and to the company”, says the journalist, trying to close the controversy that saw him as the protagonist after, in the episode of ‘Diario del giorno’ aired last September 29th on Rete 4.
The gaffe was widely targeted on social media, with memes and taunts. “Thousands of words are used during a live broadcast and it can happen to anyone, humanly, to make mistakes, but accusations of racism – says the host of ‘Diary of the day’ – they are light years away from my ideas and my history“.
Giambruno found himself at the center of another controversy at the end of August. During an episode of Diario del Giorno (guest Pietro Senaldi), which dealt with some cases of sexual violence that have shocked public opinion such as those in Palermo and Caivano, Giambruno stated: “If you go dancing, you have all the right to get drunk – there must be no type of misunderstanding says Senaldi and no type of stumble – but if you avoid getting drunk and losing consciousness, perhaps you also avoid running into certain problems and then actually risk the wolf finding you”. Words that sparked a hornet’s nest.
The journalist addressed the topic in a subsequent interview with Corriere della Sera. “I never said ‘the girl asked for it’ or that, if you avoid getting drunk, ‘they won’t rape you’: these quotes appeared in a newspaper and then everywhere, but they are pure defamation”, he said. “I took the liberty of telling young people, boys and girls without gender distinctions, not to go out on purpose to get drunk and take drugs. I recommended them to be careful because, unfortunately, the bad guy will find them. I didn’t say that men are legitimized to rape drunk women. Instead, certain politicians go after a false title, ask for my suspension, but for what? For telling kids you don’t take drugs?”.
Giorgia Meloni’s response
On 7 September, the topic was also submitted to Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, who was asked in a press conference. “I don’t tell Andrea Giambruno what he should say on TV. I think Andrea Giambruno said something different from what was interpreted by most. In those words I don’t read ‘if you go around in a miniskirt they can rape you’, I read something similar to what my mother told me when I went out as a girl: eyes open and head on my shoulders”, said the prime minister.
“Unfortunately rapists exist, we must not let our guard down. The concept of remaining as present to ourselves as possible and doing our best not to put ourselves in a position to allow these animals to do what they would like to do… I think this is a advice that many parents would give to their children: eyes open and head on your shoulders, I find no justification for anyone who rapes. Girls, be careful: I can see this”, Meloni’s response to the question.
The Prime Minister then added: “For months I have been called into question everything Andrea Giambruno says. I would like to understand what interpretation you give of the concept of freedom of the press. The way I see it, a journalist doesn’t say on TV what his wife thinks. My idea of freedom of the press is this: I am not called into question for the things that a journalist says in the exercise of his freelance profession and that journalist is not attacked in the exercise of his profession because he loves me . I ask you, for the future, not to ask me to account for what a journalist declares in the free expression of his work. I don’t think I have to tell him what he has to say, I don’t think I can do it because I believe in freedom of the press,” Meloni said again, addressing the reporters.