Today, on May 5, Italy celebrates its National Day against pedophilia and child pornography. For the occasion, the President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella, wrote a message. “Protecting children and teenagers, against sexual exploitation in the first place – the text reads – is a duty from which no one can consider him/herself to be exempted: children are the center and the future of all societies.”
A few days after the turning point in the murder case of little Fortuna Loffredo, (who had been raped and murdered on June 24, 2014 in Caivano), that is, the arrest of Raymond Caputo, the partner of the Loffredos’ neighbor, the head of state identified one of the main causes of this heinous phenomenon in the silence of the adults.
Mattarella then insisted on the need to educate the younger generations, already from school, against such serious abuses: “The fight against child pornography involves also proper education that can teach the culture of respect for each other. Therefore, we need to mobilize all those who come in contact with the world of young people – that is, school, educational activities, media, and social networks – to contribute to this cause and reject all forms of indifference towards child abuse.”
“Too often – the head of state went on – children are victims of abuse. Sexual exploitation of children and teenagers, sex tourism, pornography, and (online) luring, are the elements of our society’s degeneration. We need to firmly eradicate these plagues because they go against human dignity, which requires the strongest to respect and protect those who cannot defend themselves.”
Cases of abuse that occur in environments created to take care and protect children, such as schools, places of recreation and entertainment, sports and other occasions of aggregation and social formation, are even more serious: “It is intolerable – Mattarella says – to betray the trust of children and families. Despite the daily work of our law enforcement agencies, examples of sexual abuse of children still appear on the news and sometimes what makes them possible is the silence of the adults”. “To combat these phenomena, which are serious and intolerable – the president said – we need a collective effort of the institutions and civil society: laws alone do not suffice.”