Sunday, 28 June 2015

Why should you support the independence of Catalonia?

In the last 200 years, the world has seen lots of new countries being born. Most of them became independent after a civil war, others as a result of WW1 or WW2. Very few, like Iceland, can be proud to have achieved independence through a democratic process. Thus, if we preserve a bit of historical perspective, we must admit we have been experiencing an adjustment of the frontiers to cultural and regional borders for over 200 years. Just remember that as a result of WW1 Poland, Austria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia and Estonia were formed, and Poland had been previously a kingdom on its own before being part of the German Prussian empire.

Decolonization and civil wars also produced countries like Canada and USA, South Africa, Brazil or Mexico. But after WW2 the list of countries gaining independence became even bigger: over 25 countries, including China, Tunisia, Iceland, Philippines or Ireland. And during the last part of the XX century we saw Czech Republic and Slovakia becoming two separate countries, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Kazakhstan and even the island of Palau became independent from the USA in 1994. Therefore, we must comprehend that this is an ongoing tendency, being Kosovo the last one in 2008.

However there is one state in the European Union with a government unwilling to free up their last colonies: Spain. I am not going to explain again how Catalonia or the Basque country became part of the Spanish empire hundreds of years ago. Let me just remind you it was against the will of the people. Now Catalans we found ourselves looking at history and not understanding why some educated people from Brazil may not understand why Catalan people want their independence, did they not get it themselves? Why the Dutch people do not support Catalonia efforts, when their nation was submitted to the Spanish kings once and they were freed, supported by the British, as they were freed from Nazis just last century? Why a French person, whose family fought for freedom, equality and fraternity, are obtuse to see the reasons why we Catalans are doing what we are doing lately to get out of the Spanish false democracy and form a new true democratic state within the European Union?

As explained through this blog, there are several reasons, some cultural, some historical, and others socioeconomic. But there is a very important reason I would like to point out here: we Catalans do not live in a democratic state. Our rights as citizens in this world are diminished every day, our historical memory is silenced, our taxes used for corrupted politicians to spend their vacations in Fiji, our cultural heritage damaged and insulted, our freedom to choose our political representatives is diminished through censorship and demagogy, our rights as workers and employers plundered, favoring nepotism and corruption to all levels. Spanish politicians have tried to slander our process towards independence by saying we are doing apology of fascism, while they are precisely Franco’s heirs, the ones willing to forbid again Catalan in schools or overruling our right to vote, like they did for 40 years of dictatorship last century.

We would like to become a free new state with improved laws and tax system. With the 22,000 millions of Euros the Spanish government never returns to Catalan people, though they should according to their own laws, we could get so many people out of poverty. So many families would have their present and future improved in all areas: public health, education, social care…

So, it does not matter where you live or where you are from, if you are out there in the world and believe in democracy, please give support to the Catalan process. If you believe in the principles described in the letter of human rights, if you believe all nations have their right to self-determination and all people should be free and have right to vote to decide; if you believe in freedom of thought and expression and if you believe your country improved after gaining independence, please support Catalonia’s right to independence.

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