For the first time since the restoration of the monarchy the Spanish Senate has allowed on certain occasions Catalan to be used in the speeches by its members.
Please do not get too excited about Spanish becoming open minded all of a sudden or anything like that. The 10th language in number of speakers in Europe (Catalan) is not official in Spain and in Catalonia its status is second to Spanish. As certified by the Spanish Constitutional Court on June last year.
Predictably, PP’s leader Rajoy has complained bitterly that “speaking Catalan in the Senate wouldn’t happen in a normal country” (sic). I guess Switzerland, Belgium, Canada, South Africa and many others would be extremely abnormal countries by Rajoy’s standards. He also complained that it is too costly to use translators. Just like the ones the Spanish will insist on keep using in the European Parliament because they won’t understand that using, for instance, only English would certainly speed things up.
Municipal elections are coming soon so the anti-catalan speeches are becoming more frequent, particularly from PP who have always understood how a bit of racism before an election always brings a nice amount of extra votes.
On the more negative side, during the weekend there’s been two episodes of racist violence against Catalans during the presentation of Laporta’s party in Valencia (link in catalan) and during yesterday’s popular referendum for independence in Terrassa (link in catalan).
As usual, nobody has been arrested nor we’ve heard any declaration from a Spanish politician (or even a Catalan politician, for that matter) condemning the incidents. I’m just trying to imagine the Spanish reaction if the victims had been Spanish.