TOP sports personalities in Spain have been interviewed about their thoughts concerning Catalunya's 'illegal' independence referendum – many of whom are from the region and would be competing in a brand...
Barça FC joins Catalunya's 'right to decide' over independence campaign
FC BARCELONA has joined a campaign in support of a referendum on Catalunya's independence which seeks to bring on board as many organisations and individuals as possible in the region and beyond its borders ahead of a demonstration on May 19.
The 'National Pact for a Referendum' is not necessarily a pro-independence drive, but is instead calling for the region's residents and natives to be allowed the right to decide their own political future.
The Pact, started by the regional government, is calling on public and private companies and associations as well as society in general to join in – and Barça FC is the latest to elect to do so.
As yet, it is not known whether the club, currently chaired by Josep Maria Bartomeu, will send along representatives to the protest in two weeks' time.
But the move is gathering strength – not just among those who would like to see Catalunya become a separate country, but also among those who already know they would vote against it.
A large proportion of the community in Catalunya feels 'dictated to' and 'ignored' by the Spanish central government, which has persistently refused to even discuss the matter and has even taken regional political leaders to court, leading to their being banned from holding office, as a result of a non-binding opinion poll on secession in November last year.
Spain's government stresses that a referendum would be illegal, as it goes against the national Constitution.
But many argue that the Constitution is long overdue for a re-write.
It came into effect in December 1978 – an historic moment for Spain and the start of true democracy – as a tool to rebuild the country and guarantee human rights after decades of a fascist dictatorship.
Those who believe it should be reformed point out that it is nearly 40 years old, life in Spain has changed dramatically since then and fascism has long been condemned to its history, meaning it no longer reflects modern society.
Changes have already been made in the last decade or so to respond to the country's social evolution – when King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia, then Prince and Princess of Asturias, were expecting their second child, the then president José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero altered the Carta Magna so that, if they had a boy, he would not trump his elder sister Leonor as second in line to the throne.
Until then, preference went to male heirs – but 10 years ago this week, the Royal couple gave birth to another girl, Sofía, and have not had, nor planned to have, any further children.
Another amendment in the pipeline was that of altering the definition of marriage so as to allow for all-female and all-male couples to wed, but five years ago the Constitutional Court found that the text did not bar this in any case.
Photograph from FC Barcelona's website
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