So I have only been here for a couple of weeks and have already gotten acquainted with a few Spain (middle class) citizens between the ages of 35-50 years old. When you experience new countries, you come to truly realize what is happening in the world (firsthand versus watching the news) and you also come to appreciate how fortunate you are.
While I am aware that the United States is not perfect and our government has a lot to work on (as they do well at hiding much of their lack of integrity), my heart truly goes out to the people of Spain who are forced to deal with the ridiculousness of politics.
NOTE to Readers: This is not a judgement as I am still learning and am always unbiased. I still have a lot of research to do to determine all sides to the stories. My examples are mostly based on discussions I have had with Spain citizens and some of my own personal encounters in America. Please do not take my posts offensively as I am merely opening up the forum for discussion and gaining your perspective. My goal is to gain insight, not to place judgment.
Here are some political topics that I have been introduced to since visiting España:
- CATALONIA MARCHES FOR INDEPENDENCE FROM SPAIN: So in Spain, there is an autonomous community comprised of 4 provinces including Barcelona (2nd largest city in Spain), Girona, Lleida and Tarragona. The official languages of the community are Spanish, Catalan, and Aranese. During the 1950s, Catalonia gained significant economic growth and became a vital tourist destination, making Barcelona one of Europe’s largest industrial metropolitan areas. The Catalan government announced intentions to hold a referendum on possible independence from Spain in 2014. Note: Clearly I have not discussed the entire history of the community, but you can view here: Catalonia History
The citizens of Spain that I have had the opportunity to speak to have voiced their concerns and disapproval of Catalonia’s choice to fight to become independent from Spain. I have only spoken to a very few, but one individual said (not verbatim) that they are just being greedy trying to keep the Rich rich. Here is the link for the article and video: Independence Fever Strikes Catalonia
- THE LAWS OF ABORTION: Currently, the controversial aspects of the laws in Spain state that children as young as 16 are allowed to have an abortion without parental consent. And in 2013, a law revision was proposed suggesting that 1) mothers undergoing abortion are to be considered ‘victims’ and the practice will only be lawful in the case of rape or when there is a serious health risk to the mother or fetus. It also stated that 2) a child being born with disabilities would not be an acceptable justification for an abortion. On a positive note, a final revision was included, requesting that 3) women under age 18 should require parental consent and accompaniment during consultations. The 2013 law revisions have not been approved by parliament just yet, but it is evident that many are opposed to some of the abortion laws and revisions, including women’s groups who see these laws as an attach on women’s rights.
Based on my experience and the women I have had the opportunity to meet during my young life, I personally feel that it should be the woman’s choice. Yes, it becomes a “moral and ethical” issue when you begin discussing eliminating a life (fetus), as many believe that life begins at the moment of conception. But living in this crazy, scary world, there are so many more contributing factors. For example, if you said “woman…you are by law obligated to have this child because you made the conscious decision to have sex and place yourself in this position, so you need to take responsibility…”. But what if the woman is merely just a child who was not mature enough when interacting in a sexual act or having to make the decision to abort their child. Or what if the woman or female child lives in an abusive home where the child might be in danger. Or what if they do not have the financial means to care for the child and thus, they are subjected to ridicule for me an inadequate parent or neglectful (i.e. forcing their child to live in poverty).
Abortion is such a big deal and touchy subject. I do feel that a female under the age of 18 should be accompanied by a parent. But I still feel that it is up to the child because you do not know their situation. Their parents could be abusive. I ultimately think the issue is our society. We focus on sex and appearance and lust so much rather than doing more to focus on abstinence and the prevention of pregnancy. So many are without parents who are able to guide them accordingly. So many deal with peer pressure, and peer pressure is REAL!! So many do not value the act of sexual intercourse, and thus, they are careless and take the potential consequences for granted.
It begins with all of us educating our children and hoping that as they mature, they come to understand just how substantial the act of sex is and how much an abortion or pregnancy can affect their lives.
I have a few more topics I intend to discuss and may also elaborate some more on these topics. But what do you think? What are your experiences in your home countries? What are your thoughts about Spain? Do Tell Nicola…