I am a white woman, a mother, a daughter, a spouse, a teacher and you think that I am a Spaniard. I am writing you from my tiny insignificnat self to adress to your small insignificant self from the other side of the continent. I take the decision of speaking to you one-on-one because, if we do not speak out by ourself, neither will the media, let alone the one you think are my political representatives.
I don’t know how you cope with being white. But we hear about the news of immigrant people landing to our coasts during dinner time, when I am with my kids. Then I’m forced to explain them why in the adult world we let each other die. Every now and then, in front of my child, I do what I am doing right now with you: I detach my self from the ones you think are my political representatives and I shout “not in my name” to the inhumanity and the despotism, I shout that I want to fight for a better world.
Nor I know how you cope with being a woman. I strive to deal with my daily life, in my day by day work with a thousands fronts open. Do you feel like me? That despite trying every hour, everywhere, with all my strength, we are not welcomed to this battle? As if, despite all our victories in this moder world, we are always expected to fit in the archaic femenine sterotype perpuated by laws that makes us even more invisible? Pause your TV with the image of one of the politicians that you think represent me; look at him, closely. Do you think that this arrogant well combed men can undestand us, as women? Our thousand fronts, our thounsand faces: mother, daugher, spouse, sister, worker, friend… Do you know that my kids go to an obsolette school, reminiscent from the XIX century? That I endure it twice, as I am a teacher? I’ve been told that your kids don’t. That you’ve managed to regenerate your schools. We – the mothers whom I speak with, the fathers, the teachers who I work with, my whole country – really know how we could do as you, but in other way. We talk about that. We have clear ideas. As far as we could, we made the necessary changes. But not all the changes we know we should have done, as our ruling elites don’t even speak our languates; they don’t think or feel like us; they don’t allow us to do what we need to do. Do you know that, here, our grand-parents come from such a punished generation that, some of them, the ones who don’t have nightmares by night, have become inmune to pain and are willing to fight as if they were young? This is what happens when civil war is still vivid in your memories. But they are treated as castoffs because our governors don’t want to hear about memory, about understanding what we are, nor about what could we become. Do you also have the feeling that your colleagues, your friends, can’t wait for the moment to get rid of the incompetency masks that laws till impose to us? If the answer is no, I guess it is because you have close politicians; politicians like you, that could be your friends or colleagues. But it’s not my case. When I see the spanish politicians I feel such a distance between them and us… as if we didn’t belong to the same historic moment, to the same social context.
And, my blonde or not sot so blonde friend from the north, this is because I am catalan, not spanish I don’t correspond to the image you pictured about me as well as I do not correspond to the image that politicians have about me. I am Catalan, not Spanish. I can and I want to be welcoming. I am a woman who wants to be responsible about all of her decisions. I am a mother, a daughter, a sister, a partner and a worker ready for the XXI century. I am from a country that remained firm against silence and prohibitinon; and that has been able to navigate through history without getting lost, without excuses. I am one of those that maybe you saw on one of the recent pictures, being hit by police. I took of my glasses whilst I was waiting to be crushed, because I am 51 and my body is not as fit as it used to be. Listen to me: before voting that 1st of october, I didn’t know that I would have to stay to defend my vote with my body. When the attacks that I have been receiving generation after generation as a woman, mother, daughter, partner, sister, teacher and catalan incarnated into the particular face of the officer who was kicking me I realized that I was being beaten in the same way I have been beaten during all my life, during all my history. And I am telling you that, one on one, because I perfectly know that If we don’t do it like that, you’ll never know about me, nor about my pepole, nor about our real reprsentatives or about the media we consider close to us. And you’ll never know what happens to us, the catalans.