Italian singer Giuseppe Povia is causing outrage in Italy over "Luca era gay" (Luca was gay), a song about a gay man who goes straight. See the clip and read more...
Material for this post was compiled by our Observer in Milan, Alberto Celani.
Giuseppe Povia is launching the song at the famous Sanremo festival, something of an Italian Eurovision, which opens on Tuesday and is broadcast on state TV channel RAI. The somewhat ambiguous lyrics tell the tale of a young man, looking back on his past, who realises why he was gay: "I was too smothered by my mother", and decides to turn straight. It's not the first time the singer has caused offence over the subject. He was previously quoted in an interview saying "you're not born gay, you become gay through your social surroundings".
The president of a gay rights organisation, quoted by Ansa agency, said that the song is "an insult to all gay people fighting homophobia and ignorance in Italy". A good number of Italians are pushing for a similar message to be broadcast on public TV. The debate comes not long after Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, who's also been chided for homophobic notions, made sexist remarks about rape.
"Luca era gay"
"Luca was gay and today he's with her, he speaks with his heart, Luca says he's another man
Luca says ‘before telling the tale of my sexuality change, I'd like to say that while I believe in god, I don't recognise myself in the thinking of men, who are divided on this subject.
I didn't go to see a psychologist, a psychiatrist, a priest or a scientist. I dug into my past, and I came to understand things about myself. My mother wanted too much of me, something that became an obsession, I suffocated from so much attention.
My father never took decisions and I came to never speak to him. He was always out at work, although I had the idea that wasn't entirely true.
Indeed, mother asked for a divorce, I was 12, I didn't understand very well, father said it was for the best and then took to drinking.
Mama always talked badly about papa, she told me never to marry for pity, she was terribly jealous of my friends, and I became more and more confused about who I was.
This is my story, simply my story, no sickness, no cure...'"