Renew the consensus on Catalan, by Carles Campuzano

The Catalan, its survival and strength are once again at the center of the political debate and it does not seem that the country is in the best conditions to face some of the attacks that the language is suffering. The sloppy and spurious use of Catalan by the right, as a strategy of partisan attrition of the Spanish coalition government, a circumstance that is not new in itself, but can always be even more clumsy, and a judicial sentence that it erects in the courts, in an absurd and arbitrary way, as prescribers of pedagogical methods to facilitate the learning of the country’s languages, they are, for now, its greatest exponents. But it’s been a long time since there was concern about the fall in the social use of Catalan and the chronic low presence of Catalan in certain areas such as justice or audiovisual production. And all this, accompanied by the verification of the scarce commitment of the State institutions in the promotion and support of Catalan, Basque and Galician.

And I have said that we are not here in the best conditions. First of all, because the arsenal of ideas of the generation of the Benet, Candel, Pujol, Raventós, Cahner, Mata, And that explain the policies of the 80s and 90s, they have been too many years without a powerful and thorough update. It is obvious that the country that begins to pass through the third decade of the 21st century has nothing to do with the country that in the 60s of the last century faced a new wave of migration under the Franco dictatorship, where Catalan had been, and still was, the object of persecution by government authorities. The ‘Candelian’ ideas and attitudes, which a few days ago the president of PIMEC, Antoni Cañete, vindicated brilliantly on the night of the awards of the employers’ association of small and medium-sized companies, they were fundamental to build the great consensus of the country. A civic Catalan identity, open to all who would like to be part of, the centrality of Catalan as the country’s own language and the normalizing instruments of the school and the public media are its strongest exponents and also, why not say it, a success story.

But it is also true that, in the last 20 years, public policies on Catalan have been losing vigor and centrality & mldr; Precisely when the country was facing two transformations so structural and defining of the time that we live as the new migratory waves and the irruption of the Internet. Surely, with the school and the public media, we had not had enough for a long time to continue to spread the social use of the language; And certainly, both the crisis that began to impact Catalonia in 2010, as well as the sovereign process, focused priorities on other issues. Even, with a certain frivolity, some put independence before Catalan while, paradoxically, Catalan was connoted as never before in ideological terms.

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We need new ideas and attitudes, with new instruments, adapted to the current era, but maintaining the essentials of a model of civic identity, a project shared by the vast majority, with Catalan as the articulating element of the collective life of the country. And we need the maximum consensus of the country around the policies that have to allow the extension of its social use. The future of Catalan cannot be won only by independentists or as a cause of independence. It is necessary that all the political traditions that made the immersion and TV-3 possible be present in the new consensuses, avoid the risk of identity ‘communitarization’ and a renewed effort of public policies with the involvement of organized civil society.

And of course, We need a lot of high-flying policy in Barcelona and Madrid. First of all, to save the consequences of a sentence handed down under a law that was repealed. If it was said that the Celáa law protected immersion, insofar as it established that it was the Generalitat that had the powers to establish the language regime of schools, it is very obvious that It cannot be the courts that enter into the detail of the specific regulation of the matter, fixing a general and arbitrary percentage everywhere. Politics will have to find ways to guarantee respect for these powers of the Generalitat.

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