24/02/2021

On tactical mistakes and other expressions

3 min
Detention of the demonstration in Girona against the imprisonment of Pablo Hasél.

Last Saturday in Barcelona the police kettled a group of demonstrators in Gràcia neighbourhood and then charged at them. Subsequently the police considered this action a "tactical mistake". The fear that the people who were there in the middle were not so strategic. Shouldn't to have left the house. The . The fear the people in the middle felt was not so strategic. Shouldn't have left the house. Catalan minister of Home Affairs maintained that "there was a minimal use of force". In the videos that circulated online force seemed remarkable, but don't mind me, I'm weak. A girl has had her eye gouged out. It is collateral damage although in reality it is frontal and avoidable. It is container that suffer and are quantified and magnified, fully aware that most protesters never burn anything. Not for lack of motives. Out of strategic fear. And out of astounding ignorance, some shopkeepers speak of "the Night of Broken Glass", when in reality the only thing that happened was that a few people broke windows at night. You might despair at the first paragraph. But you hang in there. As you always do. As we are doing. Even if resilience is admirable on some days and a little scary on others

"Housing is a right, but it is also a market good", say the socialists, who, when they say rights, they mean right-wing. Or at least that is what is often understood. They thus break another of the few commitments they had with their government partners, but the government is not broken. Nor any container after this remarkable sentence. Perhaps because housing will end up being, for so many people, a container. The same as it has now become a supermarket. Little is said about the rent compared to what has been said about the king emeritus and his good role during the failed coup in 1981. Nobody knows who pays for the mansion where he seems to have moved to, but taking into account that the National Heritage pays for a few expenses and that he is a historic asset, I can see it add up. And I still don't know how many containers could be paid with the one destined to the royal household. Anybody good with numbers?

Institut del Teatre students demonstrate outside the building

"We know what Joan is like" is another tactical mistake which, changing the name as fits, has been with us for too long now. This resignation to accepting behaviour as if it could not be modified has led us to evolve very little and, although sometimes it feels like we are regressing rather than progressing, we have emerged from the caves in a good handful of areas because someone has shattered this premise. There are also those who think, of course, that there is now a hunt against men and that they are defenceless despite their good behaviour. These are the same people who have never protested, vehemently or not, against machismo. In fact, they have laughed at it and have taken advantage of all its privileges and the immunity it offers them. Because then the rules were different and the silence was very deep. In the urgent and necessary social change that we are experiencing, what we are trying to avoid is the perpetuation of perverse attitudes as deeply rooted as traditions. Traditions can change. Or even disappear. There are plenty of good examples. And of course the presumption of innocence must be vindicated. But what innocence are we talking about? Because we have taken so many anomalies for granted and we have allowed so many complicities that in the end the abuse of power can be seen as a side effect of talent or genius that has to be tolerated. Well, no. This era is over. For the good of all. And for everyone's sake.

Natza Farré is a journalist

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