Well, that’s a kick in the groin to free speech.
An Italian court has ruled that telling a man he has “no balls” is a crime punishable with a fine, according to Agence France-Presse. The court, Italy’s highest, set the precedent while ruling on a case between two cousins.
The case was brought to the supreme court by a lawyer named only as Vittorio against his cousin Alberto, a justice of the peace, for the phrase uttered during a heated courtroom exchange in the southern Italian city of Potenza.”Apart from the vulgarity of the term used, the expression definitely also has an injurious quality,” the male judge, Maurizio Fumo, said in his ruling as quoted by Italian news agency ANSA.
The court sided with the plaintiff because the phrase was uttered in the workplace, where it might affect the man’s reputation, according to the report. The consequence will be a fine in an amount yet to be determined by a judge.
The ruling has sparked a bit of disbelief across Twitter, where users expressed mixed reactions to the news. User @RobMarmet even gave tourists a head’s up about the ruling: Consider yourself warned, if you’re planning a trip to Italy. http://t.co/sustuv38