Il 5 ottobre si terrà a Varsavia una sessione di lavoro dell’Organizzazione per la Sicurezza e la Cooperazione in Europa (OSCE) dedicata alla tolleranza e alla non-discriminazione. Rappresentante della Federazione Umanista presso presso l’OSCE è Vera Pegna, socia UAAR e già vicesegretaria dell’associazione. L’UAAR ha inviato all’OSCE la seguente raccomandazione:
THE ITALIAN UNION OF RATIONALIST ATHEISTS AND AGNOSTICS is deeply concerned by the growing intolerance expressed by official Vatican sources against atheists, agnostics and non-believers in general. Papal encyclicals, statements by the Pope and by authoritative members of the Catholic hierarchy, the official daily of the Italian Bishops’ Conference, Radio Maria, all convey a distorted and defamatory image of non-believers. As a logical consequence the Catholic popular press turns this image into stereotypes (atheists stink).
A similar situation exists in other OSCE member states such as Poland and Croatia where the Catholic hierarchy exercises a strong influence on social and political life. In Poland a very popular website considers atheism “a mental illness” which, according to a commentator can be cured “ by electric shocks”. In Croatia, the weekly of the Croatian Bishops’ Conference attacked president Mesic because of his intention to remove religious symbols from public buildings and expressed the hope that the next president will be “a healthy and psychologically balanced person”.
Hate language feeds a climate of intolerance which endangers social cohesion. Therefore the Italian Union of Rationalist Atheists and Agnostics strongly recommends that:
a) governments implement their commitment to favour equality between believers and non-believers, in particular by ensuring that the public radio and television devote sufficient time to non-believers and their organisations;
b) OSCE/ODIHR address the issue of hate language specifically so as to call governments’ attention to the link between hate speech and hate crime.