Big Brother Italy host scolds housemate over homophobic slur
Big Brother Italy host Barbara D’Urso reprimanded one of the housemates for repeatedly using a homophobic slur to refer to a fellow housemate who is openly gay.
D’Urso delivered her scolding live on primetime television to the over three million people watching the show on Monday (April 29).
The Big Brother host first showed a clip of housemate Daniele Dal Moro twice using the Italian slur “checca,” which can be translated as “sissy” in English, to refer to his fellow housemate Cristian Imparato behind his back.
“If you said it lightly it’s even worse, do you understand? Because, I repeat, there are young boys and girls bullied because of this, because some idiot called them like that.”
— Barbara D’Urso
In a separate clip, Dal Moro boasts to other housemates he would “bully” Imparato.
“I don’t like using swear words, but I am f****ing upset,” D’Urso said.
“Daniele, I’ve been fighting against homophobia for the past 11 years. Because homophobia in Italy is an issue that is unfortunately, unfortunately, very topical,” she continued, placing her hands on her hips to convey her indignation through body language as well as words.
She added: “You used a sentence, and you’ve said it more than once, with which young people in Italia are bullied, mocked, maybe at school, maybe these youths don’t have the strength to react, maybe they are led to extreme gestures.”
Big Brother housemate Dal Moro claims he did not consider “checca” to be a slur
Dal Moro, the son of an Italian MP with the centre-left Democratic Party, tried to defend himself, claiming he has a lot of gay friends and that he does not consider “checca” to be a slur.
But his defence failed to impress the Big Brother host, who reacted: “I don’t care at all about how you interpret the term. I’m telling you how I and the rest of Italy understands it. If you said it lightly it’s even worse, do you understand? Because, I repeat, there are young boys and girls bullied because of this, because some idiot called them like that.”
D’Urso then threatened serious consequences should homophobic slurs be uttered again. “At Big Brother we do not tolerate any form of ghettoisation, bullying, homophobia. Is that clear?” she said.
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Dal Moro apologised, insisting he did not mean to cause offence.
In a subsequent exchange with a fellow housemate after the show, uploaded to the Big Brother Facebook page on Tuesday (April 30), Dal Moro however accused Imparato of having “found a hook” to attack him, even though he knows too well he has “nothing against homosexuality.”
“I told him as soon as I came in, I have plenty of gay friends because I get along with them,” Dal Moro said, claiming he had no idea the slur was offensive. “I say that to my friends,” he added, insisting he had acted out of ignorance.
Imparato, who was visibly upset at Dal Moro’s words, later received a visit from his father, having previously discussed his concerns about his father finding out he is gay, as he had never came out to him.
“I saw you hurting and I had to come. I left everything to come see you. I love you so much,” his father told him. “Nothing changes for me. You’re always my son. Nothing changes,” he added, before lovingly embracing.