You probably don't know Khaby Lame if you are younger than 25. But Khaby Lame is a global leader. He became the most-followed person on TikTok just after midnight on Thursday. This social network is where the youngest users have a preference that goes beyond videos of girl dancing. Lame is 22 years old and started this platform for fun after he lost his job due to the pandemic. He now has over 143 million followers. We must also consider the success of other major social networks such as Instagram, where Cristiano Ronaldo is a soccer player, and Twitter, where Barack Obama is the former president of the United States.
Lame's primacy, which is the result of his videos in which he mocks the ridiculous challenges that circulate online without needing to say a single word, has brought back the debate about the difficulties of obtaining citizenship in Italy. He has lived there since he was one years old. . Lame is the son of Senegalese emigrants. He was born in Dakar. Lame completed his education in Italy, worked in that country, and feels Italian. However, his passport comes from Senegal. He is still waiting for his Italian citizenship, as many foreign children are.
It is required that those who were born in Italy to emigrant parents must prove they have lived on the territory for at least 18 years. It's even harder for people who came as children. Lame was invited to attend the Venice and Cannes film festivals.
It is unfair that someone who has lived and grown up with the Italian culture for many years, and is clean (having not committed any crimes), does not have the right of citizenship. "And I'm not only talking about me," lamented the young influencer" in an interview with 'La Repubblica", claiming that many others in his situation are not being talked about because they're not famous.
His success on TikTok and the media attention it has generated have helped to illuminate his case. This Friday, Carlo Sibilia (Undersecretary of the Ministry of the Interior) announced via Twitter that the decree that granted him Italian citizenship had been approved at the start of June. The official notification will arrive soon and you will be able to take the oath.
Lame's TikTok number one may have revealed a secondary effect. It could accelerate the parliamentary journey for the bill called 'ius Scholae'. This bill grants nationality to children over 12 years of age and to foreigners who have completed at most one full school year (five years) in Italy. The process does not require that they wait until they turn majority. Next Wednesday's discussion of the 'ius Scholae' will take place in the Chamber of Deputies. It is expected that it will be approved in July and then will be considered in the Senate.
The measure will benefit approximately 877,000 Italian-speaking children and teens who attend school in Italy. It is difficult to claim that an Italian student studying with our children isn't Italian. This law is a reminder that Parliament can take note of reality," says Giuseppe Brescia (the 5 Star Movement parliamentarian who wrote the bill's text).
Even though polls indicate that even large numbers of voters support this initiative, Matteo Salvini is the League's leader. Salvini says that citizenship must be developed until 18 years of age. He believes that a "shortcut", such as the "ius scholae", would be counterproductive for the boys. They complain about the difficulty of waiting until they are majority age to get their nationality. Mario Balotelli was a soccer player who was born in Italy to Ghanaian parents. He competed for the Italian under-21 team but had to wait until the age of 18 to get a passport from Europe.