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14 de des. 2018

Jordi Galves: "Cornellà isn’t like Catalonia"

How is it possible to be guilty of a hate crime against a group that does not exist?", asks Milford Edge. The author of the following article, Jordi Galves, faces charges of "hate speech"... believe it or not.
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Cornellà isn’t like Catalonia

When citizen Inés Arrimadas says that Cornellà is a plural and diverse land, like Catalonia, she’s telling a dirty rotten lie. It isn’t like Catalonia, Your Honour. Arrimadas is just flattering her electors in an electoral campaign, smugly soft-soaping the people. Cornellà, territory of that great politician José Montilla (so plural and so diverse, he), is as plural or as diverse as Oslo, for example. Actually, if you have a proper think about it, far less so. A bit more travel might afford a bit of perspective. What Doña Inés means – wink, wink – what the self-interested Jerezana says without saying it in her quest for votes is that Cornellà is part of Spanish Catalonia, a heavily Castilianised and colonized land, affiliated mainly to Spain, olé, where the surviving Catalan speakers are a sometimes remote almost invisible minority; a land where the vast majority are immigrants, or the children of immigrants, who live in exclusively Spanish isolation; a land of very marked Spanish nationalism, made in Spain; a land where only one group is considered superior to others; a group which has decided not to integrate in Catalonia, where these people living in supposed plurality and diversity tell you proudly that, after forty or fifty years here, they still don’t understand a word of Catalan; people who – in defence of Spain – now defend their right to ignorance, to not know Catalan, a language they see merely as a nuisance, which is why they fight, attacking the educational system of linguistic immersion. Save for some, or perhaps many, exceptions, Spanish speakers are the only immigrant group that has the arrogance to live in Cornellà as Chiquito de la Calzada did in Tokyo, as if he had not moved house, that house of Spanish origin, olé, that mythical land that must continue to be worshipped, like some strange religion. Cornellà isn’t really very plural or diverse at all.

In Barcelona’s industrial belt, in this great land, which Inés Arrimadas mythologises in search of votes, I met a lonely, isolated and scared youth, known to his peers as “the Catalan” to stigmatise him, to harass him, as if we weren’t in Catalonia and they weren’t Catalans. I met another former student of mine who hid the fact that he spoke Catalan at home from everyone, aware of the unseemliness of his linguistic and cultural identity, like gays or Jews surrounded by the majority. I’ve experienced this furious contempt for Catalonia in this plural and diverse land of Cornellà, where an education is just a nasty badge worn by the privileged, like a sign of dissent, where Catalan culture is seen as an intolerable imposition by foreigners, hated or disdained. This is the plural and diverse land of which Inés Arrimadas speaks, a hostile, depressed area, punished by various crises, which everyone who can flees from and forgets about, a territory that celebrates Spanish nationalist indoctrination, hatred of those who are different, where the law of the jungle rules, with all its forms of violence: the far-right, the sexism, the permanent resentment of the immigrants who don’t want to stop being immigrants, or to ever accept that they now live in Catalonia and that Catalonia has now become their home. I was born and lived for many years near Cornellà, and Catalan speakers, Your Honour, were pointed at. By you too, Inès.

Original article: "Cornellà no es como Catalunya", by Jordi Galves. 17 November 2017. https://www.elnacional.cat/es/opinion/jordi-galves-cornella-no-como-catalunya_213324_102.html

English translation, published in "Jordi Galves’ hate crime: denouncing the phobic" by Milford Edge,
March 11 2018: http://barbaryfigs.com/2018/03/11/jordi-galvezs-hate-crime-denouncing-the-phobic/

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