Vicenç Villatoro’s Diary

May 22: Exterminate?!

President Torra is neither a fascist, nor a racist or a xenophobe 

1. Catalonia’s newly appointed president, Quim Torra, is neither a fascist, nor a racist or a xenophobe.
2. The old tweets of his which have been dug up were both imprudent and inappropriate.
3. Some of his other writings have been twisted and taken out of context, so that they convey the opposite of their intended meaning.
4. If we applied the same standards to Twitter posts and other writings by prominent political leaders who refer to themselves as constitutionalists, they could be called names like president Torra has, probably in an equally unfair manner.
5. Spanish nationalists have succeeded in using Torra’s inappropriate tweets for their own political ends, which has objectively damaged Catalonia’s pro-independence cause, mainly because they have fuelled a pre-existing prejudice.
6. This initial propaganda victory by Spanish nationalists might eventually backfire on them due to their tendency to blow things out of proportion. When a mistake on Twitter prompts a newspaper headline claiming that the PP, the PSOE and Ciudadanos wish to persuade Europe that Torra intends to exterminate Spaniards, the exaggeration is so gross that it becomes detrimental to those who endorse it.
And one last thing: using the sort of language that feels at home in the Balkans is not only a mistake, an exaggeration and a lie. It is, above all, irresponsible and immoral.

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