Last Saturday, Barcelona, a city which is currently debating its model of coexistence and rules of civic behaviour, was the setting for one of the largest demonstrations in recent years. Barcelona has become a capital of civic pro-sovereignty. It was an exemplary demonstration -no unpleasant incidents, a festive atmosphere and represented by all the generations - in short, excellent. A success that has created havoc in Catalan politics and exposed the shallowness of many parties: obsessed with the electoral cycle, they are negotiating a statute reform that does not satisfy wide sectors of Catalan nationalism. This, together with the anti-Catalan campaign being carried out by the PP, was channelled into a spontaneous expression that will pass into history. Despite the media boycott and criticism from the parties (except for ERC, who are still wounded by Zapatero having slammed the door in their faces) the people took to the Gran Via -supporters of independence, nationalism, autonomous regions and federalism. That Saturday the country gave out a warning blast. «You can’t fix this with a watered down Estatut», was the message. Will their voices be heard?
(Article de Saül Gordillo al setmanari Catalonia Today, 23 de febrer de 2006, pàgina 3.)