Celebrating International Day of LGBTQ Pride in Italy

On the 17th May 2019  Scuola Secondaria di Primo Grado “D’Alessandro-Vocino” celebrated the International Day of LGBTQ Pride with students of the third year. The goal of this celebration was to raise awareness and be tolerant with people who have different sexual orientations and identities.

The event started with the vision of the Italian film “The father of the brides”. This is the story of Riccardo, an Apulian farmer with solid moral principles, who is in Spain as a taster for an international olive oil competition. After his work, before returning to his homeland he deci​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​des to visit his daughter Aurora, who to his immense sorrow has left her homeland and has long lived in Barcelona. When he arrives at the girl’s house, he meets her ro​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ommates: Rosario, a separated woman, and her daughter. But behind the apparent “normality” of this cohabitation, there is a secret that could be fatal for the “healthy principles” of dad Riccardo: Aurora and Rosaria not only have a relatio​​​​​​​nship, but they have even married. Riccardo is shocked and returns to Puglia. Later on Aurora, her wife and the child escape from Barcelona, threatened by Rosario’s ex-husband and ask Riccardo for his protection. In a short time, Aurora and Rosario gain the sympathy of the whole town despite the difficulty of dealing with a father full of prejudices. Suddenly, due to the ex-husband of Rosa​​​​​​​​​​​​​​rio who stabs Aurora, the whole town learns with bewilderment of her homosexuality. In the end Riccardo, after having seen his daughter dying, asks for the presence of Rosario at his side, realizing that love can really have a thousand colours but the feeling that animates hearts is always the same.​​​​​​​

After the film vision, students took a discussion about the message of the film against social prejudice about sexual “diversity”, then they did some researches about this International Day and this is what they have learned: the first International Day against Homophobia took place on May 17th  2004, 14 years after the decision (May 17th 1990) to remove homosexuality from the list of mental illnesses in the international classification of diseases published by “World Health Organization”.

In 2007, following some statements by Polish authorities against the LGBT community, the European Union officially established the Day against homophobia on its territory. Here are some extracts of the approved text:  “The European Parliament […] reiterates its call to all Member States to propose laws that overcome discrimination suffered by same-sex couples and asks the Commission to present proposals to ensure that the principle of mutual recognition is also applied in this sector in order to guarantee freedom of movement for all people in the European Union without discrimination;

(Article 8) “[…] condemns the discriminatory comments made by political and religious leaders towards homosexuals, as they fuel hatred and violence, even if withdrawn at a later time, and asks the hierarchies of the respective organizations to condemn them

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?pubRef=-//EP//TEXT+TA+P6-TA-2007-0167+0+DOC+XML+V0//IT

Then students found some articles about episodes of sexual discrimination in Italy

http://www.articolo29.it/2014/prima-condanna-in-italia-per-discriminazione-fondata-sullorientamento-sessuale-caso-esemplare/

https://www.repubblica.it/cronaca/2018/05/16/news/puniti_per_esserer_gay_minorenni_picchiati_in_famiglia_e_mandati_dall_esorcista-196516978/

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