Sunday, March 09, 2008

The Exercise of Vital Powers

Today is Elections day, both in France, and in Spain, and although the media have a lot to say about the French local elections, the place where all eyes should be focusing is Spain.


Because Spain has a fundamental choice to make today : either to continue toward modernism, the secularization of its extremely patriarchal society, toward social reforms aimed at improving life and welfare of everyone, or to slide back down the road of authoritarianism and Catholic dogma domination.

Contrary to the political spectrum we’re used to in France, Belgium, Germany or Holland, in Spain the right is set far, truly far to the right part of the spectrum. The specter of Franco haunts the rallies and meetings of the “People’s Party”—never has a political party so little deserved the name it’s taken for itself, but let’s not go there. Spain has never truly come to terms with the bloody dictatorship of general Franco, who was overwhelmingly supported and cheered on by the upper classes, and by the Catholic church.

The Catholic church itself has never come out of the closet with an expression of regret or apology, on the opposite. Even today, the Catholic church in Spain fights so it can continue to honor “victims of communist revolutionaries”, aka collaborators of a brutal, savage dictatorship who helped capture, detain, torture and slaughter men and women whose crime it was to dream of freedom, and of something other than the Right’s and the Church’s absolute dominion over their lives. Neither the church, nor the Right have ever done their duty of opening the historical records, and acknowledging the crimes that took place. They never condemned what happened under Franco. Worse, they hold ceremonies every year to honor the memory of a bloody tyrant on par with the worst we have known, Mussolini, Pinochet, etc.

And today, today the Catholic church and the Right see an opportunity to regain the power they lost when they tried to manipulate people and hide the truth behind the Madrid terrorist attacks. Today is mass day. The faithfuls will go to church. They will listen to their priest. And it just so happens that their priest has a message for them on this special day. A very important message that comes directly from the highest places in the Spanish Catholic hierarchy, from people who know better than us poor simple souls, and who only want what’s best for us.

And today, the Catholic church comes out of the woods, and clamps down its claws upon the people under its dominion. Today, it lifts its mask of benevolence and harmlessness.

Today, the Spanish Catholic church tells people for whom to vote.

Today, the Catholic church uses its power to try and regain what it never accepted to lose: dominion over every aspect of people’s lives, regardless of their faith, or lack thereof. In an almost sublime disregard for people’s freedom of choice and opinion, for people’s liberty to have faith in something, to be agnostics or atheists, the Catholic church rears its ugly head, and exercises its power.

Today, the Catholic church hands out for everyone to see the proof that, contrary to what optimistic people believe, it has never, ever accepted to withdraw to the sphere of people’s personal beliefs. Today, the Catholic church demonstrates that it isn’t satisfied with that, and that it wants what was taken from it during the French revolution in 1789: absolute power over temporal matters, over our lives. The power to dictate what we should do, think, believe and how we should lead our lives.

Today, the Catholic church proves that it’s anything but harmless, that it merely waits in the shadows, biding its time until the moment to regain what it lost comes.

It’s hoping that today is the day in Spain.

Today, the Catholic church proves that it keeps being a threat to all who would be free, and that it needs to be uprooted for good.

Today, the Spanish people have the unique occasion to send the Catholic church back into the closet, in the shadows where it belongs.

Good night, and good luck.

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