Italian Lawmakers Call for Marriage Equality, Anti-Homophobia Laws

A debate has begun in Italy's People of Freedom (PDL) party (the party of Silvio Berlusconi) about gay rights, and proposing laws against hate crimes and in favor of same-sex unions, Europe Online reports:

Bondi"I do not understand, I really don‘t, why (fellow) Catholics should fight battles against those who call for the recognition of same-sex couples," PDL coordinator Sandro Bondi (pictured) said at the weekend.

His remarks came amid bitter controversy in France about the legalization of gay marriage and in the wake of a report by ILGA-Europe, a pan-European association, classifying Italy and Bulgaria as bottom of the EU class on homosexual rights.

Bondi was reacting to a letter published Saturday by centre-left newspaper La Repubblica, where a gay 17-year-old said he was writing as his "last alternative to suicide" and lamenting that "not everybody has the luck to be born a heterosexual."

Laura Boldrini, speaker of the lower house of parliament, also replied to the teen, offering to meet with him and saying that she "really hoped" that lawmakers would soon adopt a law making homophobia a criminal offence.

Other members of the PDL – such as former ministers Giancarlo Galan and Stefania Prestigiacomo – backed Bondi‘s position. "It is time for homosexuals to also be given the (full) rights of Italian citizenship," Galan said.


  1. Steve says

    Gee, even the more machismo infused societies of Europe are looking to do more than the US. Spain passed full rights a couple years ago, Italy is poised; but the US is still hand-wringing over DOMA and I suspect the SCOTUS won’t have the balls to strike down Prop 8, DOMA or any other discriminatory legislation until Scalia is long gone. I can’t even imagine the beginning of a national legislative push for full rights as long as the Tea Party wingnuts are around. Obama is milquetoast at best and at worse two-faced. The only thing worse than him for our rights would have been Romney. With Romney we wouldn’t have expected help; unlike the expectations of electing Obama. Look at the refusal to add protections for the immigration bill for gay couples. Why was that not an automatic portion of the bill. …. Oh yeah, everybody wants to prove how their Tea-Party cred rather than stand up to the nuts and say “no more”. Why is Sarah Palin even considered relevant any more. She can’t even complete a job she was elected to do. Another example of me, me, me; I’ve got my “stuff” why should I care if anyone else does? Whatever happened to the attitude of caring for others? Why are we not helping our neighbor? The Tea-Party is nothing but a Selfish ME ME ME batch of whiners. Anyway; I’m happy that another European Country can lead the way on social progression. We used to be the country people turned to, so they could get past the old labels. Not anymore, Europe is leading on socially progressive legislation. I predict Bulgaria and Russia will pass pro-gay legislation before the US will.

  2. Francis #1 says

    Awesome indeed.

    Steve, 12 states allow the freedom to marry for same-sex couples. It was 6 just 6 months ago. We’re making a lot of headway. Yes, there’s a real chance SCOTUS won’t issue a ruling that will lead to equality, and unfortunately Congress drags their feet on our rights. But progress is occurring. It’s occurring everywhere. Some countries quicker than others.

    Equality in Italy would be awesome. Winning in Italy would be a major major feather in our cap as a community. Seeing 77% of Italians in favor of civil partnerships with full legal rights is a very good thing. Let’s hope to see equality happen in Italy.

  3. Steve says

    I’m not talking about states, I’m talking about Federal level legislation which trumps state law. That was one of the things decided during the Civil War. State nullification of Federal Law is not a viable option (think the pot laws). As long as we have no FEDERAL PROTECTION we will not have protection everywhere. That’s why removing DOMA and passing ENDA are so important. The feds can nullify all of the state protections in an instant. I realize that 12 states are better than 6, and most polls put us in the majority of approval but we can’t get anywhere in the House currently; we can barely get anything protected in the Senate. The gang of 8 pulled the gay couple protections from the immigration bill because the TEA PARTY opposed it. So despite polling approval for protection we can’t get it Federally. That’s why I’m so P.O. about the Feds and the lack of support from Obama and the Dems.

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