Vicenzo De Luca dismissed Halloween in a Facebook livestream. Halloween is popular in Italy as an imported American holiday and serves as a precursor to celebrations of All Saints’ Day on Nov. 1 and All Souls’ Day on Nov. 2.
De Luca blasted the holiday as a “moment of idiocy” that would only aggravate the coronavirus surge.
“Halloween is this huge piece of nonsense, this huge stupid Americanism that has also been imported into our country,” De Luca said, as translated by The Independent. He added: “Seeing as we must deal with reality, and seeing as I’m hearing about people already preparing to have parties, from 10 p.m. on the last October weekend, everything will be shut.”
De Luca is known for his unwillingness to mince words, and local media nicknamed him “the sheriff” for his no-nonsense style of governing. He previously threatened to mobilize police with flamethrowers to bust up parties when COVID-19 first began sweeping across Italy in March.
The Campania region in southwestern Italy, which includes Naples, faces major repercussions from a second coronavirus wave. About 530 of the 671 hospital beds designated for COVID-19 patients were occupied as of this week. Schools shut down on Friday through the end of the month as a result.
Italy hit 10,010 new COVID-19 infections over a 24 hour period as of Friday, the highest number since the virus first entered the country.
See De Luca’s speech below, courtesy of The Independent.