The Spanish right's hatred seems to have no limit. The leader of Spain's opposition Popular Party, Pablo Casado, made the remarkable assertion this Friday that in Catalonia "there are teachers with instructions not to let children go to the toilet because they have spoken Spanish". He added that "children of Spanish National police and Civil Guards are being pointed out in class and told they can't be integrated" into the class group, and that there are children who have been punished by "putting stones in their backpacks" for having spoken in Spanish in the playground. "Can it be tolerated that someone asks for a five-year-old child to be stoned and isolated in class?" he commented with respect to the alleged harassment of the child from the family in the Catalan town of Canet de Mar that demanded 25% of classes delivered in Spanish.
Beyond these expressions of hatred towards teachers, Casado lashed out against against both the pro-independence parties and the governing Socialists. "This is not only what ERC, JxCat and the CUP are doing," but also "the party that makes them essential at Spanish national level, which is the PSOE," he said. In this regard, he described as "scandalous" the alleged harassment of the child of Canet, while he also criticised the demonstration to support the Catalan schooling model which has been called for this Saturday "with all of Pedro Sánchez's nationalist partners." It should be remembered, on the one hand, that the PSOE ministers are in fact demanding that the Catalan government abide by the court decision and implement 25% of Spanish in Catalan classrooms, while, on the other hand, the Catalan Socialists (PSC) have refused to attend the language immersion mobilization that will take place this weekend.
This is the point that this race to the bottom has reached. The lies of the PP leader come after Ciudadanos deputy Carlos Carrizosa equated the case of the Canet school with the 1990s situation in the Basque town of Ermua, where the ETA terrorist group assassinated Miguel Ángel Blanco. "Canet is a kind of Ermua, differences aside," the Catalan leader of Cs told Parliament.
The PP and Cs are competing to see who can best inflame the crowd, and have been coming out with statements so extreme that have even been repudiated by those far removed from the Catalan independence movement. On Wednesday, the director general of the National Police, Francisco Pardo responded forcefully to a PP deputy's parliamentary question: "It is clear to everyone that social coexistence in Catalonia has improved significantly in the last three years, that is, it has improved since your party left the government". The administrative head of the Spanish police corps said that the Spanish right was "looking for the daily apocalypse" and should be trying to put out fires instead of starting them.
Not everything is acceptable in politics
Casado's latest statements have not been well received in Madrid, where Spanish government spokesperson Isabel Rodríguez has criticised the style of political comments made in recent days. These statements "detract" from the democratic quality and prestige of the institutions. "Although Casado believes that anything goes in politics and that it all helps, not everything is acceptable in politics, and it doesn't. And although there are many ways to criticize this government, I sincerely believe that Casado is not representing his voters when he acts in this way," she said.
This Friday the families at the Turó del Drac school, in Canet de Mar, have spoken out to express their rejection of the lies being told by the Spanish right. In a press statement, they said they felt "used, slandered and saddened" by the "false narrative that is being generated, which does not correspond to the cohesive atmosphere" in the school. "There is no attempt to harass, isolate or attack any child or family," they recalled, calling for an end to the dissemination of falsehoods that threaten "to break the climate of good social harmony that has always existed in the school."