Rome: Over a million protest against “civil unions” for homosexual couples

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Rome protest

Over a million protesters gathered in Rome’s Circus Maximus and adjacent streets to protest against the Cirinnà bill on civil unions and voice their demands.

As the Italian Parliament prepares to vote on the “civil unions” for homosexual couples that allows homosexual couples to adopt their step children i.e. children of their partners, over a million gathered in Rome’s largest arena on January 30, 2016 to protest against the bill that supports the civil unions.

The protest, dubbed “Family Day” was organised by the Committee to Defend Our Children and aimed to prevent the ruling Democratic Party and its allies from granting adoption rights to homosexual couples.

The protesters thought that the measure would allow homosexuals to contract egg and sperm donors to “synthesize” children who would then have no right to a natural family.

“The uterus is not a furnace in which a manufactured product is made!” said Massimo Gandolfini, the main spokesman for the march, to the assembled crowd.

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Gandolfini warned that if the proposed Cirinnà law was passed “there will be an enormous confusion in which the family will no longer exist, but rather various models and confusions of the family, and the victims will be our children, because the law has the power to change the culture of a people.”

A vote on the bill is expected in early February.

Notably, the organizers avoided comments critical of homosexual behavior, as did the Catholic bishops who supported
the march, led by Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, Archbishop of Genoa and president of the nation’s episcopal conference.

However, Bagnasco defended the traditional understanding of the family and the rights of children.

“The true good of the children must prevail over everything else,” said Bagnasco days before the march. “They are the weakest and most vulnerable. They are not a right at all, because they are not things that are produced.”

He cited a statement made by Pope Francis last year regarding the welfare of children, who have “a right to grow up with a father and a mother. The family is an anthropological fact, not an ideological one.”

Though a majority of Italians are not offended by the homosexual practice, it is the adoption of children that offends them with nearly an 85% against the measure.

A civil union, also referred to by a variety of other names, is a legally recognized arrangement similar to marriage. These unions have been established in a number of countries since the late 1990s, often developing from less formal domestic partnership legislation. In Denmark, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, they have since been replaced, and in a number of other countries supplemented, by same-sex marriage. Civil unions are often seen by campaigners as a “first step” towards legalizing marriage for same-sex couples. While civil unions are predominantly established for both opposite-sex and same-sex couples, in a number of countries they are available to same-sex couples only.