I would like this to be the name of a new drink, or an arts festival, or something equally evocative of the beautiful, in many ways wonderful hometown I left behind in 2000.
But primavera valenciana, as it’s became officially known on Twitter, is the political movement sweeping the city: students, staff and their families protesting against educational budget cuts. These have seen so far some schools unable to turn their heating on, relying on staff to purchase stationery from their own money, unable to provide photocopying paper or toilet paper. Hardly an environment conducive to educating the future.
What has been different this time is the police brutality and repression, the beatings, detaining of youngsters, etc. The police has gone as far as to refer to students as ‘the enemy’ in yet another blunder that the government seems happy to ignore. With the economy on the brink of collapse and many youngsters unable to see a route into the future rather than packing up and moving abroad, it is disappointing to see the way people are treating other people – somebody’s son, somebody’s daughter. I cannot get my head around what power does to some people and how basic rights are ignored.