Scroll to: 24 minutes.
Keywords: Roberto Benigni; Oscar Wilde - De Profundis
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17.2.9 San Remo, Italy
Note by Steve C. Portelli
In his appearance yesterday at the San Remo Song festival, the famous Italian actor talked at length about homosexuals, saying that the only sin in homosexuality is stupidity. The festival has been marked by polemic this year after one of the competing songs, 'Luca era gay' describes the story of a gay person, afflicted with troubles, who becomes straight (and happy) when he meets the right girl.
Benigni said it is incredible that in 2009, people are still condemning other persons for loving others of their same sex. He also mentioned the thousands humiliated, beaten, tortured, imprisoned and killed - just because they LOVED someone else, and makes a comparision to a situation where a man or a woman are condemned because they love another woman or another man respectively.
Benigni also specifically mentioned the concentration camps where homosexuals were cruelly imprisoned and killed during the Second World War, and said that it was very difficult for the human race to become extinct because of homosexuals - as if dinosaurs had become extinct because they were gay!!!
And then he read the letter that the famous Irish playwright and poet, Oscar Wilde wrote in prison for his lover Bosie, more than 100 years ago. Oscar Wilde, born in Dublin, had been sent to hard labour in an English prison because of his homosexuality.
A truly moving performance by Roberto Benigni, full of love, dignity and respect - miles away from the patronising and judging attitude shown by many when they talk about homosexuals.