La Voz de Galicia – November 8, 2019 →

Cristina PatoWe repeat routines, as in the Bill Murray movie, Groundhog Day, though in our own national version there are slight changes that don’t contribute much to the narrative. Taking a look at my April 26 column (the last Friday before Spain’s elections), I thought about the differences between the previous debate of that last electoral round and this one. Well, there is one more man, and he is to the right. Other than that, it doesn’t seem as if many things have changed. Some are more quiet, some talk more, and in general, the picture is the same; even though instead of four there are five (or seven) similar men who speak in grand plurals in contrast to the diverse, plural society that has already lost the will to listen.

Tomorrow is the day of reflection when no one reflects, and Sunday is the day when those who still have hope will go and vote to try to move forward in a country used to take one step forward and two steps back…

Arturo Pérez-Reverte, with his habitual irony, cried this week after the debate: «I believe that they are really the politicians we deserve (…) they embody who we were, are, and pretend to be.» At first, I laughed. And then I thought, If they are in power, it’s because we allow it. And then, out of apathy, I thought no more on the subject. And this was when I realized that it is apathy that makes us feel this way. Our apathy. We know that the good and generous don’t end up in power, so we don’t worry about them. We think that no matter how much we fight, we cannot change anything, so, out of apathy, all remains the same…

We are all guilty: they are guilty of not listening, and we are guilty of listening to them too much. Perhaps that could be our new way of understanding politics: stop listening to those who neither lead, nor follow, nor get out of the way.

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