Thursday, July 16, 2009
Italian Interpretations of Robbery
While rock climbing at an outdoor natural gym in Frassené (Agordo) on Saturday, our car was broken into. Someone ripped open the lock and stole a wallet they found inside the car. The problem for us and boon for them was that they were able to glean lots of cash on that particular day, while the wallet happened to be full of Euro-backs (this means "greenbacks" but for Euro)AND an ATM/credit card all-in-one. They somehow got the PIN number and were able to withdraw ridulous amounts of money inside of an hour, our guess as to the time it took to rob us, get down to the valley and start the cash-pull.
Of course, we are absolutely horrified about losing our hard-earned money. That parking lot was in located in one of the smallest mountain towns we know about and never has much car traffic. The obviously professional job of the operation, and its location, caught us off-guard.
The real surprise was the police (carabinieri) reaction and their assumptions which were offered to us when we reported the robbery. It was a quick: "Romanians did it. Those foreigners come from the Eastern European countries and raid our country because they know they can get away with it." This statement was supposed to make us feel that we had proof about how horrible those foreigners are who come to Italy. After all, the media is always talking badly about them. But remember, I am a foreigner, too, and extra-communitaria like them! Well to be precise, I am still one while Romanians' status has recently changed, since the country entered the European Union.
In fact, their testimony made us even more angry, not about the foreigners, but about Italy. Some foreigners come here because they know that neither the police nor the justice system works very well, so yes, they can rob Italians and run off easily with the money.
The police didn't realize that they were criticizing themselves.