If a beard were all it took to make a philosopher, then a bearded goat could emulate Plato, according to the criticism leveled against self-styled philosophers by Lucian, who, born in Syria, would surely never have been granted a certificate of Greekness by the gene police of neofascist political party Chrysi Avgi (Golden Dawn). However, according to sarcastic Lucian wit, if a plush mustache and long hair were all it took to make a general on a par with Karaiskakis, then the Golden Dawn MP who “liberated” the open-air market at Mesolongi from the grips of the ultimate enemies of the state would be a better general than Karaiskakis himself as, alone, he faced the enemy’s troops, which were armed to the teeth with plastic toys, fly-swatters, T-shirts and whatever else street vendors keep in their arsenals. As far as the other Golden Dawn MP who “liberated” Rafina while paying homage to the Virgin Mary is concerned, well heaven help us.
This fascist phenomenon -- one manifestation of which is the wave of attacks by terrorists who enjoy parliamentary immunity against migrants (who are guilty because of the color of their skin) and people who express a different opinion -- is just as serious as the country’s economic predicament. If we expect this battle to be fought on our behalf by outsiders or a public order minister, we will lose and be lost. The same will happen if we do not look at the truth straight on and admit that the packs of men in black are not unnatural, but that their existence proves how much we have failed as parents, as educators, as political parties, as a Parliament and as a democracy. There is nothing strange about the wild growth of neofascism in ground that for years was sown (by TV, the Internet, Church officials and political leaders) with the seeds of God-given superiority, ill-bred and anti-social egotism, disregard for others, machismo and bigotry.
The neofacist phenomenon is a child of society and it is society’s duty to do something about it.
In Mesolongi there was a woman who had the nerve to tell off the Golden Dawn raiders. They could have beat her up, of course, but she wasn’t well known, like Liana Kanelli or Rena Dourou, two politicians who were assaulted on live TV by another Golden Dawn MP. The lady was not afraid. Maybe she had seen the plaque at the entrance to the city, which reads: “Every free man is a citizen of Mesolongi.” Knowing that those who are frightened are not truly free, she stood up against them, proving that the most important immunity the hit squads enjoy is not that granted by Parliament, but that of society.