The Italian Almanac

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Italian News - November 21

Castelnuovo Rangone in northern Italy has decided to dedicate a monument to the native American Indian to honor this people's history and respect for the environment. The American Indian, explained Roberto Alperoli, the mayor of this town near Modena, "is a symbol of how the strong oppress the weak and how a false peace is achieved through the annihilation of others".

The monument is part of a municipal cultural project entitled 'Spirits Never Forget' which seeks to "look to the past in order to speak about the future. "We believe that the culture of this people still has a lot to teach humanity today," the mayor explained. "There is a 'democracy in nature' in Indian culture which western man lacks. And this lack of respect for nature, this cultural arrogance, is making our planet less liveable day by day.

The famous 1853 quote by Chief Seattle will be inscribed at the base of the monument: "The earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like blood that unites us all. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself".

The monument, a sculpture by Maurizio Sterchele, will be unveiled on December 2. Castelnuovo was the first town in Europe to dedicate a public area to John Lennon, the ex-Beatle slain in New York in December 1980. It also has a road named after 'On the Road' author Jack Kerouac, a 'Catcher in the Rye' Park, named after J.D. Salinger's classic novel, and a Fairy Tale Hill, with drawing by Italian artist and cartoon director Emanuele Luzzati.