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YES! Law N°40 is a rip-off

category italy / switzerland | gender | press release author Thursday May 26, 2005 21:42author by FdCA - Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchiciauthor email internazionale at fdca dot it Report this post to the editors

On Italy's referendum regarding fertility treatment

It was written without taking into account the opinion of women and against the opinion of the experts, with no account taken at all of the extremely delicate technical problems related to it.

The result was a law which is impossible to enforce due to the highly serious consequences to the health of women who undergo treatment of this nature. The law was demanded by the Church, which itself it no longer able to force its will onto the consciences of the faithful, and instead is trying to impose all its beliefs and teachings on everyone through a law of the State.

The result is a hypocritical law which is not shared by the majority of Italians, believers included.

It was voted for by senators and deputies who confused fertility treatments with cuckoldry and who greeted the protests of (the very few) female parliamentarians with the cry of "whore!".

The result is a vile law which in practice refuses to recognize the existence of male sterility, thereby reassuring our male rulers and sending the rest of us back to the times of the biblical Patriarchs when only women were sterile and liable to be repudiated for that reason.

It became the law in a State that has reserved for itself the right to decide for each of us by limiting access to treatment and to healthcare, trampling over any pretence at equality or a secular State.

The result has been an increase in "reproductive tourism" to countries whose legisation is even marginally an improvement on this.

This law must be changed.

Actually, what it really needs is to be abolished altogether. If we have to have a law, then let it be written again from scratch. The only reason a law on these techniques is needed (a law, mind you, not a regulation or a medical circular, or an agreed mode of practice...) is because science is moving faster than our perceptions, just as relationships and families are changing, and this is frightening to some. And, apparently, laws are there to reassure us.

But what is the answer to the fear of the enormous power of science and medicine? Simply put, it is to lock the stable door after the horse has bolted, on a question of principle and kow-towing to dogmas. Instead of reasoned discussion and public debate on the questions of life, death, healthcare and illness, limits and boundaries. Collective reasoning, not the imposition of the will of a few. Only with the courage of freedom and debate, with agreed practices that protect freedom and individual responsibility, the right to choose, both in our relations and in science can we ever hope to achieve criteria and regulations that are agreed on by all rather than imposed.

For now, we will just have to make do with winning these four referendums...

May 2005

This statement was published in the May 2005 issue of Alternativa Libertaria, the monthly news-sheet of the FdCA. For more information on Law No.40 and background information on the referendum, see our website under the category "gender issues".

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