Bloggers in Italy have published a list of ten politicians there whom they allege to be “gay but homophobic,”* promising to name clergy and others in future lists. They say they are doing it to “bring a little justice in a country where there are people who do not have any kind of defense against the daily attacks and insults by a class of bad political hypocrites.”

The tactic has divided LGBTQ activists in Italy, with one calling it an “extreme way to do political battle” and another calling it a “despicable operation.” The Minister of Equal Opportunity claimed the move would breed intolerance and violence. But a defender of the list said it was “the fruit of the indignation of those who suffer daily insults and violence,” and the bloggers say their list is “tough but fair.”

Whatever your views are on the privacy rights of people who make it a point to invade the privacy and curtail the rights of others, and whatever you think of this tactic given the fact that so many homophobic politicians do in fact seem to be gay, it’s telling that simply being called is homosexual in Italy is thought to be so damaging. If gayness weren’t seen as so unspeakable, this would be a non-story.

* Translations mostly Google’s, slightly mine.