Saturday, December 13, 2008

The big C

I am tired, really tired of hearing people qualify Catalan nationalism as Nazi. I do not have a big issue with people calling us misguided, provincial, old-fashioned, narrow minded, selfish and things like that. but Nazis, no way.
Three weeks ago I spent the Jewish weekend in Jerusalem, one of the rare times when, while traveling for business, I could do some sightseeing. I visited the Yad Vashem Holocaust History Museum. There I could witness the horrors of Nazism, I could see pictures and videos with piles of famine-stricken bodies (pure bone ans skin) bulldozed away by Nazi officers, people forced to remove their clothes and jewelry in front of a ditch and immediately shot in their heads in front of those waiting their turn and German doctors experimenting with a crying nude10 year old girl (I do not know exactly what they were doing, since I could not watch the video for more that 5 seconds).
Not long ago, I read the comment of an alleged Catalan woman, Anna Sevillé, equating the Catalan C levels requirement to the number that the concentration camp inmates had tattooed on their arms. I feel disgusted when those comments come from non Catalans, but when they come from Catalans, I feel deeply saddened.
Even if I do not agree with some of the rules established by the Catalan government and despite my critical views on the Catalan education system, I understand that the key objectives of the Catalan government are genuinely positive:
  • Integrating everyone in Catalonia and not having a split society
  • Preserving the Catalan culture and language
That is the diametral opposite of NaZism.

I despise all those who use the N word linked to Catalonia in any form. I think that all of you who link Catalonia and Nazism are "fills de puta".

The reality is that Catalan naCionalism, with a big C, C as in Catalonia, as in Caring, as in Civilized, as in Calm, as in Charming, as in Clean, as in Clear, as in Colorful, as in Conscious, as in Correct, as in Confident, is integrating and welcoming. If we had a solid border around us, we would be called patriotic, but the lack of borders turns us into a nuisance.

At the end, I think that the person who described better Catalan nationalism, was one of the ones who despised it the most, Sabino de Arana, the father of Basque nationalism.
While trying to belittle Catalan nationalism, this is the way he described it:
"En Cataluña todo elemento procedente del resto de España lo catalanizan, y les place a sus naturales que hasta los municipales aragoneses y castellanos de Barcelona hablen en catalán; aquí padecemos muy mucho cuando vemos la firma de un Pérez al pie de unos versos eusquéricos, u oímos hablar nuestra lengua a un cochero riojano, a un liencero pasiego o a un gitano".

[In Catalonia, they"catalanize" every person coming from the rest of Spain, and the locals love the fact that even those from Aragon or Castile in Barcelona speak Catalan. Here (in the Basque country) we suffer a lot when we see some Basque verses signed by someone call Pérez or we hear a carriage driver, a Catabrian fabric merchant or a gypsy speak our language (Basque)].

  1. I also read the book "The boy in the striped pyjamas" I liked it but I would have preferred a slight different end. I would have preferred that the kids swap.
  2. Even though I admire the Jewish people and I think that catalans have a lot to learn from them, I do not agree with the way Palestinians are treated. I hope that Obama will settle the issue with a 2 state solution based, as much as possible, on the 1967 borders. It is also clear that not only Catalonia and Spain have stupid politicians, Israel and Palestine suffer from the same disease.
  3. Yesterday I attended the Boston Catalans Xmas dinner for the first time. I had a real good time.