Vital Signs

Italy’s Child-Abuse Lobby

Don Fortunato di Noto is a well-known Italian Catholic priest who has served as a leader in the fight against pedophilia for years, so much so that even Newsweek has acknowledged his work in a lengthy article.  As founder and president of the helpline Telefono Arcobaleno, he has forcefully decried the abuse of children as a scourge of appalling and increasing proportions.

Recent developments—including the self-styled “Pedophile Liberation Front” smashed by the police in Rome—have, sadly, proved him right once again.  Yet there are still those who downplay this tragic phenomenon, either accusing people such as Don di Noto of being unwarrantedly alarmist or blaming the wrong culprits (such as the traditional family, repressive morals, or consumerism).  

In doing so, these “minimizers” are acting as the unwitting allies of what Don di Noto has exposed as a powerful political lobby, protecting and promoting pedophilia in Italy as something that should be accepted as sexually normal in its “soft” or “nonviolent” version.  Daniele Capezzone, a national leader of the Radical Party, has justified his party’s campaign against the suppression of pedophilia: 

Pedophilia, like any other sexual orientation . . . may not be viewed as an offense per se.  It might become so when it translates into patterns...

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