The intervention of Sister Anna Monia Alfieri
In addressing the much debated issue of the double surname for children these days, it is always necessary to follow the same method, that is not to be duped by the slogans that are proposed to us by the mass media but to deepen and analyze the causes and possible consequences of the proposed legislation. First of all, it must be said that the possibility of attributing the double surname is not new: over the decades it has come back to talk about it on several occasions. Personally, I agree with the analysis of some jurists who see the question not so much as the tool to guarantee the equal dignity of fathers and mothers, an absolutely acceptable objective: other objectives are hidden in the alleged protection of the identity of the child. We are, in fact, in the field of a claim, namely that of passing on the maternal surname as a defense weapon against a male-dominated society. Now, it seems to me that the battle against all forms of gender discrimination must be fought on quite other fronts, certainly more substantially: let's think about the economic treatment, the protection of motherhood, the battle against all forms of moral or physical violence. Let us think, again, by way of example, of when we prefer to take on male figures, for fear of having to provide substitutions in the event of maternity (it also happens in schools, even Catholics …!). Therefore, a first observation is this: we solve the real problems related to discrimination, we do not fight over the form which does not correspond to any substance.
Second order of considerations: in the theme of the double surname I see the resurgence of the question of parent 1 and parent 2, of the gender issue, a sort of legislative forerunner which, in the claim to protect the identity of the child, actually claims the will of adults to pass both their surname. Will the children of homosexual couples bear which surname? And it is clear, who knows me knows, that I have nothing against people of homosexual orientation and my statements given on several occasions can testify perfectly.
Third order of considerations: there are differences. Let me explain with an example taken from school life. We know that the good teacher is not the one who treats all his students in the same way, but the one who, paradoxically, makes differences, respecting the personality of the individual student. Mutatis mutandis, the protection of a right is not guaranteed by leveling: the father transmits the surname, the mother gives life. The father-son relationship is not originally a bodily relationship, as happens with the mother. Giving one's surname on the part of the father implies an assumption of responsibility (and we know that it is not a foregone conclusion), an element of extraordinary cultural and social value. We complain about the absence of the role of the father, an absence that has pernicious effects on society. Let the fathers take their responsibility!
Fourth order of considerations: let's try to think of the tangle of problems that could arise in the event of a crisis in the couple. Is it not that the surname of the child, in the event of a marriage crisis, can give rise to further reasons for conflict? The question is obviously rhetorical. What if a child complains about the choice made by the parent?
Fifth and last order of considerations: I have the impression that with the question of the surname we are hiding behind a finger. I wonder: but with all the problems that Italian families have to face, are we sure that the question of the double surname is so important? I invite the promoters of the proposal to take a tour of the family counseling centers, the assistance centers for families in difficulty, the Caritas centers, in order to understand the real needs of Italian families. We do not make decoy!
In conclusion: we give parents the freedom to pass on the double surname but we avoid presenting the issue to public opinion as the protection of a right.
Therefore, in order of priority, parental equality can be guaranteed through the Family Act.
Law no. 32/2022, which delegates the Government to issue a series of legislative decrees aimed at introducing new work-life reconciliation measures in favor of parenthood, and to strengthen the structure of existing safeguards.
This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Start Magazine at the URL https://www.startmag.it/mondo/doppio-cognome-figli/ on Fri, 13 May 2022 05:15:14 +0000.