Commemorating the Capaci Massacre

Photo by Barbara Morana
Legacy ships
Legacy ships

(Photo by: Barbara Morana)

May 23rd is the 21st anniversary of the shocking bombing of an anti-Mafia judge and his family near Capaci, since then known as the Capaci Massacre.

It was wonderful to realize, once again, how we have managed to transform a painful day into a moment of hope and dedication.

Twenty-one years ago, thousands of Sicilians went out to the streets to say enough with Mafia and its deplorable massacres. It was the first time we broke the chain of silence, and we were finally a civil entity allied against Cosa Nostra. Since then, every year we try to do the same, by showing up in a public place to reaffirm our refusal to accept any kind of mafia control.

Above all, we want our kids to remember the extreme sacrifice that Falcone, his wife Francesca Morvillo, Borsellino and their bodyguards made for all of us. So we have decided to focus on our youth, and the future of our nation. We want them to realize how easy it is to choose legality over illegality, courage and civil awareness over indifference and fatalism.

(Photo by: Barbara Morana)

Thousands of young Italian citizens arrive in Palermo each year with the so-called “Ships of Legality”sailing in from Civitavecchia and Naples. Palermo looks like a huge green field filled with scented flowers spread out to cover the ground where our heroes died.

Everyone crowds in the city streets for concerts, conferences and workshops, in a celebration of lawful citizenship. All of this is made possible thanks to the courageous work of many anti-mafia organizations, and the devoted persistence of thousands of Italian teachers and volunteers, who work all year long.

Of course, I went with Emma's class to the event, and it was very touching to see all these little kids wearing t-shirts with Falcone and Borsellino's images. So, as a mother of two, I say thank you to these people, thanks for reminding us who we are, where are we from, and what we are capable of. Thanks for never allowing us to forget the fact that there are people willing to die for their beliefs, normal people like you and me,  capable of putting common interests above their own, just because it is the right thing to do.

Legacy ships (Photo by: Barbara Morana) Legacy ships

This is what we want our children to learn, this is the way we want young Sicilians to grow up, responsive citizens of an island who have lived through a recent past full of tears and blood, aware that now it is up to them to wipe the tears and clean up the stains..

All international media should have broadcast this event, but sadly almost nobody was there.