Backlash from Italy's LGBT groups as Parliament votes on 'useless' gay hate ban

Published: September 20, 2013

Italy’s LGBT groups are saying the new ban on homophobia is ‘hypocritical’. LGBT rights and ally groups criticized the proposed legislation, which intends to penalize homophobia and transphobia but still protects the ‘opinions expressed within political, cultural or religious organizations,’ allowing groups to continue making homophobic comments. In a dramatic demonstration, Italy’s anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S) staged a kiss-in during the vote hearing where members turned to members of the same-sex and locked lips, holding signs that read ‘more rights’. The group’s Facebook page revealed the kiss-in was held ‘because a kiss and a hug should not be frightening and we are not afraid’.

According to la Repubblica, the bill passed with a vote 354 in favor and 79 against. ‘Pro-family’ groups and individuals have strongly opposed the bill, saying the legislation would impose their freedom of speech and be used as a Trojan horse to introduce gay marriage to the country. The bill has also been opposed by Catholic legislators who’ve pushed for hundreds of amendments to the original legislation. 

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