The past few days have been very interesting in our home of six months. On Sunday we watched in horror as the Spanish national police violently beat people who were attempting to vote. These people were not provoking the officers. Yet they were attacked. I posted a brief message on Sunday about this. Hoping that the world was watching.
What was interesting was that even when the people were attacked they still did not become violent themselves. They kept calm. They just wanted to vote.
On Monday Catalunya announced the decision to have a general strike on Tuesday 3 October in response and to denounce the police violence inflicted on Sunday.
So, yesterday we watched the news and social media to see what was happening around us. We had thought about going into Sitges to see first-hand but after seeing the news of roads being blocked we decided that it wasn’t our place to be there.
Crowds gathered in peaceful marches in Sitges, in Barcelona and in towns, villages and cities throughout Catalunya. Marching, chanting, singing, dancing. Showing solidarity against the violence of Sunday.
I used the word peaceful both in Monday’s blog, “The Right to Vote” and again here. This is something that struck both Bob and me as we have been watching this. The people have remained peaceful. If one person got upset then those around him reminded him to calm down. It’s sad to say but if this had been back home in the United States this would have escalated into more violence. We’ve seen it so many times. Businesses would have been vandalized or even looted. Thankfully that didn’t happen here.
The #CatalanReferendum story is far from over. Spain does not want Catalunya to become independent. Many of the Catalan people do not want that either. What needs to happen is open dialogue. The story is truly just starting in many ways.