From the Desk of the Minister

Yesterday after the final whistle in Siena, it didn't take long for one of the country's more well known Inter fans to speak up in light of his team's victory. But when Ignazio La Russa, currently holding the office of Italy's Minister of Defense, so not precisely just any guy on the street, spoke it wasn't to congratulate the winners, nor even to say he was proud of his team for another victory. He chose instead perhaps the most unlikely, as well as the most unfair, of targets and publicly scolded Siena. "They should be ashamed", he said, "they were playing for Roma out there".

Again, this is one of the country's most high profile football fans lashing into an already relegated team for having the indecency to mount some sort of last stand and fulfill their sporting duty to at least try to win something. Be it a point, three points, or just some self pride; the end result is less important than the attitude to actually try. (This is clearly a concept Lazio has failed to grasp, by the way, even though they pride themselves on being the football club with an Olympian identity, having somehow chosen their colors in honor of the Olympic Games. Oh, how ironic it is.)

Today two Italian soldiers were killed in Afghanistan, and another two are in critical condition following the same attack. This naturally falls directly on the desk of the country's Minister of Defense, who in fairness did state that in light of the tragedy he didn't wish to continue the polemics from Siena-Inter. Well done, the choice to stop complaining about football must have been difficult to make. Then, however, he proceeded to do just that anyway, national tragedy be damned. Through his press office was spread the Minister's belief that Siena didn't conduct themselves according to his own high flying standards of sporting justice and excellence, and that he was hoping for a more "positive attitude" from the team.

Never mind the glaring inconsistencies of his statements, nor the fact that even this couple could raise children possessing the wherewithal to point out the absurdities of a fan of the newly crowned champions complaining that an already relegated team actually tried to win a game against them. Never mind all of that. Do mind, however, the bizarre, twisted, downright sickening prioritizing La Russa showcases. Today he let his complaints go through his press office, but it matters little and the channel of communication is but a red herring; he continued to prolong that particular discourse, which was twisted already yesterday, when tragedy had struck and when it falls fully within his job description to involve himself with it.

A club has the fans it deserves, and fans have the club they deserve. I guess.