Rome’s draconian outdoor mask rule has been recently reinstated despite remarkable coronavirus data that is significantly better than last year. Over the weekend, all major piazzas in Rome will require that people wear masks.
They have repeatedly extended the country’s state of emergency in Italy over the past two years and bypassed legislative processes to give special powers to its executive branch. The current state of emergency in Italy began in January of last year is expected to continue until December of this year. Several ministers suggest that it may be extended again.
The Italian Constitution does not allow for the declaration of a state of emergency. It is further described in the 2018 Civil Protection Code and says that it cannot last more than 12 months. It can only be extended for a further 12 months. The government has used its extraordinary power to issue over 80 Civil Protection ordinances in the last two years. These include several levels of lockdown, restrictions on movement, and a maximum number of people allowed into a residence.
It is hard to see why citizens should be restricted from engaging in activities due to the current state of affairs with the coronavirus infection in Italy. On December 4, 2020, there were 3,567 COVID-19 patients in ICUs in Italy. This number dropped to 732 on the same date in 2021, which is an amazing 80 percent drop.
The numbers of deaths due to the coronavirus are even starker. 741 people died in Italy from the coronavirus on December 4, 2020. In comparison, only 77 people died of the virus on the same date in 2021. This is a 90% decrease in deaths due to the disease. The graph comparing deaths due to coronavirus in both years clearly shows that the winter spike of deaths in 2020 has not been repeated in 2021.
Many people who protest the increased legal restrictions in place to stop the spread of coronavirus insist their opposition is not based on a rejection of vaccines but rather on the government’s unacceptable arrogance of power over the private affairs of citizens.
Some people have started to compare the Italian government’s attachment for control with the communist regime of China, from which the virus originated.