Pasta has long been a staple to Italians. I should say, Southern Italians to be exact.
In the 1930’s, the new Fascist leaders led by Mussolini, outlawed pasta. They said, instead of producing strong Italian soldiers, the pasta weighed the youth down and made them lazy. The real reason was that Mussolini wanted to sell more rice, a crop heavily produced in his home region in Northern Italy. Hence, the outlaw began. This came to a crashing halt when they tried to get through to the Southern Italians in Naples and Sicily. These areas loved their pasta and vowed to fight against it if need be. The outlaw never really took shape as well as Mussolini had intended. Some say, his outlaw of pasta led to the deeper divide between the North and the South, ultimately never unifying the country to fight in World War II.
Key takeaway: don’t mess with an Italian’s pasta!