A stranger entered a cafe in Milan and puzzled its occupants by saying:
"I'm neither a foreigner nor Milanese."
"Then what are you?" they asked.
"I am an Italian,'" he explained.
Gian Rinaldo Carli
Della Patria Degli Italiani
It took another one hundred years before this nationalistic tone resulted in Risorgimento, or the Kingdom of Italy, which was completed in 1871. These days, nationalism is a four-letter word, and patriotism is being tested by policies that turn the concept of fairness on its ear.
The western world is being torn apart by (past) success and complacency, which is a deadly combination that has resulted in welfare societies being unable to denote the difference between tough love and real love.
Moreover, the argument is further complicated in America where any talk of asking fellow citizens to use their wit and determination to change their lot in life is greeted with cries of racism. Nonetheless, there is a movement gaining momentum in which the makers are essentially saying "enough," we just want our own thing.
For the most part, most nations have been cobbled together throughout the years, formed in the aftermath of war. While lines on maps can be erased or redrawn, and language and costumes can be stifled, the burning desire that dwells within a people for the love of their roots cannot be extinguished. Still, such passion can be expressed along with a greater love of country, when things are good, or when the entire nation has a singular purpose. Unfortunately, this is not the case anymore.
Big problems are not about slight differences in political opinion.
Veneto has five million people, and it is one of the richest regions of Italy. Recently, an online vote revealed 89% of residents want to break away and form an independent nation. These rumblings have existed in Northern Italy for a number of years, creating political tension that some see as a powder keg. Hardworking and industrious regions including Lombardy, Piedmont, Tuscany, and Emilia-Romagna are all worked up over the confiscation of their sweat to placate the non-working south.
Last year, the residents of Veneto paid out €30.0 billion more in taxes to Rome than it received in benefits.