Italian Pro-Life Catholic Lawyers Oppose Nation’s ‘Totalitarian’ New COVID Vaccine Measures

Starting Dec. 6, unvaccinated Italians will be barred from a broad range of public venues.

People protest during a demonstration against the Green Pass Covid-19 health certificate, at Circo Massimo, on November 20, 2021 in Rome, Italy. As of October 15, the 23 million civil servants and employees in Italy must present proof of vaccination, the so called "Green Pass" or a negative Covid-19 test to work. After Dec. 6 restrictions are expanded. (Photo by Antonio Masiello/Getty Images)
People protest during a demonstration against the Green Pass Covid-19 health certificate, at Circo Massimo, on November 20, 2021 in Rome, Italy. As of October 15, the 23 million civil servants and employees in Italy must present proof of vaccination, the so called "Green Pass" or a negative Covid-19 test to work. After Dec. 6 restrictions are expanded. (Photo by Antonio Masiello/Getty Images) (photo: Antonio Masiello / Getty Images)

ROME — An association of pro-life Italian Catholic lawyers is fighting against what they view as autocratic, unconstitutional, and unjust measures imposed by the Italian government to tackle rising COVID cases.

A government decree issued on Wednesday evening ruled that after Dec. 6 a “super green pass” will be required to enter indoor bars, restaurants, and other public venues such as cinemas and theatres. Under the terms of the new pass, the unvaccinated will be barred from such places.  

The move comes as Italy has some of the best contagion data in the EU, but the government is viewing a fourth wave of the coronavirus, which has hit nearby Austria and Germany particularly hard, with increasing concern. The decree will be reviewed on Jan. 15 and is expected to be extended.

“For the vaccinated it will be a normal Christmas,” Mario Draghi, Italy’s unelected technocratic Prime Minister, told reporters on Thursday. The aim of the heightened restrictions, he said, is to “keep the normality that has been conquered.” 

“Let’s avoid risks,” Draghi continued. “We want to continue to stay open, go out and have fun, buy things, fight poverty, have happy children at school.” 

Since August, the Italian government has enforced a “green pass” that demands vaccination, proof of recent recovery, or a negative test to access indoor restaurants, theaters and a list of other public venues. The pass was later imposed on all employees with hefty fines and suspension without pay for non-compliance. 

From Dec. 6, the green pass will be extended to all public transport, regional and interregional, as well as hotels. The controversial policy has sparked growing “No Green Pass” protests across the country. 

In response to the latest restrictions, Iustitia in Veritate (Justice in Truth), an association of pro-life Catholic lawyers, issued a statement Nov. 25 calling the super green pass an “abuse and violation of the principles of the democratic order” that increasingly shows a “totalitarian shift towards an institutional model alien to our system [of government].” 

The group, which seeks to defend legally and in other ways those facing injustices against human dignity and to uphold the natural law, strongly criticized the policy for overlooking parliamentary procedure as if it did not exist through a “non-existent state of emergency.” 

“The terrible words of a prime minister, unabashedly aimed at consolidating a new normality passed off as a conquest, also feed the division between those who accept the narrative — so those entitled to the new normality/freedom — and those who are simply exercising their own right to self-determination, according to the principles of prudence and precaution,” the lawyers argued. 

In Nov. 25 comments to the Register, the association’s two directors, Francesco Fontana and Wanda Massa, underlined their concerns, asserting, “We are living in the darkest moment of our Republic in which Parliament is deprived of power, the opposition is non-existent, and constitutional rights have been suspended.”

 

Statement to Bishops

In an earlier Nov. 20 statement, the lawyers issued a “filial call to pastors,” criticizing Italy’s hierarchy for actively opposing protestors and “disavowing” faithful Catholics who “every week have taken to the streets to pray the Rosary to defend their dignity as free men.” 

They criticized in particular a “surprising and saddening” message the bishops issued for next year’s National Day for Life, which appeared to be directed at those opposed to the COVID vaccine and accusing them of “selfishness, indifference, and irresponsibility” — characteristics, the bishops said, “far removed from the Gospel and from the spirit of the Constitution.” 

Iustitia in Veritate said placing the Gospel and the Constitution “on the same level shows a desolating levelling with the world and the degradation of a Church reduced to the rank of ‘handmaiden of science.’” They also wondered how it was possible to “reconcile the protection of life” with vaccines that are “contaminated by abortion,” have shown themselves to have “a poor [record] of effectiveness,” and to have “extremely dangerous adverse effects on health, especially for the younger segment of the population.” 

Fontana and Massa, who said they have had some success in preventing some people who refused to comply with the vaccination requirement from being suspended from work, criticized the bishops for being “openly vaccinist and coercive.” 

They said they believed the bishops justified their approach firstly because of the Vatican’s “open support of the vaccination campaign” (the Vatican has its own green pass policy) and secondly due to Pope Francis’ recent video, produced by the Ad Council, in which he said vaccination was an “act of love” toward others. 

Italy’s mainstream media claims the majority of Italians are in favor of the both the green pass and super green pass restrictions, and data shows that nearly 74% of the population is fully vaccinated, one of the highest rates in Europe.

But Fontana and Massa believe more and more people are becoming aware of a “sinister game” that is taking place. “The massive media censorship, the violent repression of dissenting demonstrations that have taken place in Italy as in most other nations, demonstrate a single globalist direction and the consequent end of national sovereignty,” they predicted.

They therefore believe it is “crucial to establish networks of solidarity, where authentic human relationships can be revived and strengthened to judiciously recognize evil in order to resist actions that aim to destroy man and society.”

“Only the rediscovery and the courageous defense of our nature and dignity can prevent us from being overcome by discouragement,” they said, “and act according to the logic that our victory is that of Another and that the gates of hell will not prevail.”

 

People demonstrate against COVID-19 vaccine mandates for students in Huntington Beach, California, on Jan. 3.

COVID Mandate Logic

EDITORIAL: The decision whether to vaccinate or not should be a free and informed choice, not something that’s mandated or coerced by our governments.

José Benlliure Ortiz, “Leaving Mass in Rocafort,” 1915

On Suffering and Hope and Forever

‘In the Eucharist the sacrifice of Christ becomes also the sacrifice of the members of his Body. The lives of the faithful, their praise, sufferings, prayer, and work, are united with those of Christ and with his total offering, and so acquire a new value. Christ’s sacrifice present on the altar makes it possible for all generations of Christians to be united with his offering.’ (CCC 1368)

José Benlliure Ortiz, “Leaving Mass in Rocafort,” 1915

On Suffering and Hope and Forever

‘In the Eucharist the sacrifice of Christ becomes also the sacrifice of the members of his Body. The lives of the faithful, their praise, sufferings, prayer, and work, are united with those of Christ and with his total offering, and so acquire a new value. Christ’s sacrifice present on the altar makes it possible for all generations of Christians to be united with his offering.’ (CCC 1368)