Editorial: An old, familiar stench

Catalan MonitorArticles, News Roundup

Photo: A far-right fascist attacks attendees at the Blanquerna Cultural Centre in 2013 (Photo credit: ABC.es)

From November 23rd, 2017

By Sebastià Alzamora

In February, the [Spanish] National Court condemned the rapper Valtònyc to three and a half years in prison for recording a song that made mockery of the former King of Spain, Joan Carles de Borbó, and the Crown. Within a few days the same court condemned a student of history known as Cassandra for having spread tweets with jokes about Carrero Blanco [a leading politician in Francoist times, and confidant of Franco’s, assassinated in 1973] to one year in prison with seven years of suspended sentence, which prevented her from accessing a scholarship to finish her studies, as well as excluding her from the possibility of working as a teacher, when completing them, as she had planned.


The day before yesterday, the Constitutional Court suspended the imprisonment of the far-right fascists who attacked people in the Blanquera [Catalan] Cultural Centre in Madrid on September 11th, 2013, with the argument that imprisonment could entail “irreparable damage” for these Spanish patriots. Just a few days prior, Justice Minister Rafael Catalá threatened that, according to what he called an “improvement re hate crimes”, introduced by the PP [Partido Popular] government to the Criminal Code, those people who dared make comments or jokes about the death of the State Attorney General, José Manuel Maza, would be prosecuted and punished if these comments were deemed inappropriate. On the same day that the aforementioned ultra-right wing fascist Madrileños were exempted from prison – the Constitutional Tribunal having overruled the Madrid Provincial court ruling from September – the very same minister made a mockery of the nearly one thousand people injured in Catalonia on 1-O, as a result of the police violence which his government persists in denying even occurred. Because he is a minister, this mocking and sarcasm wasn’t made public by tweet or in a song or even in the press, but rather from the gallery of Congress, the place from which we are all supposed to be represented, as Spanish citizens (which also means we are the taxpayers who pay Mr Catalá’s salary).

The members of the fascist convoy which last summer drove around the Cordovan locality of Lucena “to celebrate July 18th” [the date of the start of the Spanish Civil War] walk free, like the numerous violent groups of the extreme right that in the last few weeks have caused upheavals, destruction and hate crimes in Barcelona and other Catalan cities. Another argument that the Constitutional Tribunal used to free the Blanquerna fascists is that some of them have children, a consideration that has not been applied to the jailed Catalan government ministers or the two Jordis. A thousand lawyers have spoken out to warn that these imprisonments are absolutely improper and irregular, without any judicial precedent or any willingness from the government of Spain to listen to them.

An old, well-known stench is the title of one of the first plays written by great Josep M. Benet i Jornet in 1962. The unbreathable stench that now offends us daily is that of the political and moral rot that we have allowed to fester since then, and it makes it easier, every day, to imagine how everyday people must have felt during the Franco regime.

Original Text: https://www.ara.cat/opinio/sebastia-alzamora-vella-coneguda-ferum_0_1912008792.html