An emotional video uploaded by a Maltese man after his parents were allegedly attacked in Buġibba has gone massively viral in Malta, garnering nearly 150,000 views in less than 20 hours.
The powerful video reveals the reality many people are experiencing in their everyday lives in Malta, culminating in many feeling frustrated and downright angry. Indeed, Fenech ends up threatening outright violence on an entire race as a result of his anger due to the actions of some.
“I just went home to say hello to my mum and dad. Listen to this,” Ryan Fenech says in the video, which is filmed in his car. “I noticed my dad was keeping something from me, and then he said: ‘Isma Ry, I am afraid to tell you something’. I said ‘tell me’ and he told me: ‘A black guy attacked me’.
“So here we’ve begun – now they are attacking elderly people.”
Fenech quickly enters a tirade where he covers everything from the economic reality that Malta’s facing to the ongoing migration crisis that Malta’s been at the forefront of for years.
Fenech says that when he was younger, he would often play on the streets and feel secure while doing so. Nowadays though, he felt like Maltese children couldn’t do that anymore as it wasn’t as safe.
He then goes on to say that while he isn’t a rich man, he won’t be bought out with some “government vouchers”.
With nearly 4,000 shares, including from prominent people in Maltese society, his video had clearly struck a nerve with the overwhelming majority of people agreeing with him.
Fenech’s profile is not littered with racist content or anything of the sort, with images of him mainly at work or playing with his family.
However, his violent reaction also put off other people.
“If someone ever touches a hair on my child’s head, I’ll make a disaster in Malta,” he says. “I’m ready to do it, I don’t care, they can arrest me if they want – I have my rights and no one commands me in my country.”
“And I’m not talking about all black people – some of them have a heart of gold – but the trash. We don’t need them in Malta.”
Many commentators emphasised with Fenech’s pain, lamenting a changing Malta.
“I am with you – well said,” said one person. Another person said: “I don’t even trust my children in our own drive-in let alone running in the streets like we used to do. It’s so sad. ”
However, others found his language too strong.
“Hate, threats, fearmongering, racism, lies, hypocrisy… You get the whole package. He never saw Maltese men ogling and even sexually harassing women, even young girls. He was living in peace before black immigrants arrived in Malta. Furthermore, the not-so-subtle encouraging of violence might influence some, which makes this video very dangerous indeed,” said one person.
Malta finds itself in the middle of a COVID-19 crisis, with tensions rising alongside the temperature.
After months of global uncertainty, and the faltering of Malta’s prolonged economic boom, an attack on one’s parents can be enough to push one to say some extreme things.
“I know I’m speaking rudely, but I have my face forward,” Fenech said. “Issa too much is too much… you don’t touch my family… forgive me guys but I’m so nervous right now, you just can’t go anywhere anymore.”