Wednesday, July 13, 2011

We Are Here

About the author of this article for Help Catalonia

Quim Masferrer
Author and theater director.
Screenwriter and director for radio and television.
Founder of the theater company Teatre de Guerrilla.
He has received many prestigious awards, most notably the Award of the Institution of the Catalan Letters.

This is the speech by Quim Masferrer on July 9th 2011 in the demonstration for Catalan independence.

WE ARE HERE because the July 9th announcement was made by civilian society, without any official support, with the voluntary work of this stubborn people who does not stink of collusion with the enemy, who does not favor the interests of the state that oppresses us and empties our pockets thoroughly.

WE ARE HERE because we love our Catalan land and we want its freedom from a Realm of Spain that despises it, steals from it, and doesn’t let it be the way it is. Present times are bad, that’s true, but our future is clear and irrefutable, and it’s called INDEPENDENCE.

WE ARE HERE because the people of Catalonia, men and women of all ages—children, youth, adults and old people—are not anonymous, we have names and family names, shared history, a millenary language, culture and deep roots that we love. No one can force us to renounce to them.

WE ARE HERE with a radical commitment. As professor Joan Solà said: we should no longer collaborate—not even for a single minute—with those who step on us as a people, harm us, drown us and want us to be extinguished either in a fast or a slow way.

WE ARE HERE because our bet on the future is INDEPENDENCE, made out of sacrifices and loyalty over the years. We are heirs of those who, right through history, have died to save our identity, and we are responsible for future generations—which many of us won’t live to know—, that deserve a free land.

WE ARE HERE because we do not want to renounce to our own cake. We’ve been trying to eat our cake for years. Our cake is delicious, and is called land, Catalan language and culture, hard work, prosperity generated by the Catalans from now and then. No one will eat our cake without killing us first. We know we can die for our people and for our land.

WE ARE HERE because we want to live in Catalonia in Catalan, along with those who want so too. We do not want to pretend, like hypocrites, or change our language when we are questioned, nor kneel down to beg for our rights and the leftovers of the surplus wealth generated in our home with so much effort.

WE ARE HERE because this people—our people—united despite their differences, has a common horizon: INDEPENDENCE. We know, because of the wisdom we have accumulated through the centuries, that desiring it is not enough, that we must unite to get it. Organized in networks, with intelligence and relentlessly, we will move from a cry of protest to a constant, rhythmic and tough action, in order to conquer the freedom we deserve.

WE ARE HERE to share with our people the certainty that we will reach independence only when we overcome our divisions. To say “we’ll work with them” and “we won’t work with them” is not acceptable anymore. If we want the same, we should ALL go together. We ALL have a place reserved, from the peaceful ones to the warriors, from state officials to strategists, from workers to employees. The human value in Catalonia is, fortunately, very rich in its diversity. The dividing line between us exists only among the supporters of freedom and those who, without any feel of shame, want us submitted under Spain or collaborate with the enemy for fear, or for power interests. It’s crystal clear.

Let’s leave then the fight for who says the last word, up to political parties. They, as the name suggests, are partitioned. We, the people, must remain as a whole.

WE ARE HERE because we won’t say yes anymore, when what we really want to say is no, because we will not give in frightened. No one will stop us in the inalienable right to be ourselves. Maybe it will seem we’re quiet, yes, strategically, but we will be boiling inside and ready to burst together on the right occasion. We have lost our fear and now we sail the sea with deployed sails and good wind. Our freedom is the ship that sails to our particular Ithaca, our desired port, the port of INDEPENDENCE.

Long live free Catalonia!

Photo taken by Quim Masferrer himself from the scenario where he pronounced his speech.
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