LA REPUBBLICA (Italy)
ROME – Online homophobia has reached a new low in Italy where a Facebook page circulated this month with the declaration: "Aborting a gay (fetus) is an act of faith."
Rome daily La Repubblica reported that the Italian language Facebook account was opened on June 19 with this false claim: "Thanks to the miracle of science we are able to impede (homosexuality)…Yes, I know that it is terrible to abort the poor babies affected by the gene of sodomy. But it is the lesser evil." Updates followed with bogus reports of scientific studies that could determine homosexuality in the unborn, and invented would-be mothers adding posts about having to decide to abort after finding out their baby would be gay.
The virtual space generated more than 2,000 comments, mostly but not all critical, before Facebook closed the page after a week of protests from civil rights groups and politicians. Several noted that beyond the false news in the digital troll, there was also "incitement to abort." Gay rights activists noted that Italy has no law specifically punishing acts of homophobia.
"I put myself in the shoes of young gay people who must read these things," Paola Concia, a member of the Italian Parliament, told La Repubblica.