Although there is a vivid debate about politics need to listen people’s voice, the answer to recent protests in Spain again is an anti-democratic one, as they set off a debate on limiting the authorization of public protest these days. (Referring to the demonstrations named by date 25S, 29S for September 25 and 29).
The Popular Party in Spain is committing a fatal mistake, when they try to silence the mass protests by restricting democratic rights. To turn to restrictions of protest is against every logic, if already until now protesters have said that democracy is kidnapped, they are even more right now. If people don’t stop organizing protests and publicly manifesting their will and voice, government have to hear them instead of misusing their authority to silence them.
The story from 15M to 25S in brief:
The protest in Spain beginning in May 2011 turned into a movement – the 15M (also named as #occupy, #takethesquare, 3acampadas #SpanishRevolution) taking the squares in all capitals of Spain for weeks, establishing their own infrastructure and mode of organisation within a few days including building up well functioning networks within Spain and occupy movements in other countries. Remember the commence of #occupywallstreet of on September 11, 2011.
The various acronyms and names of the social movement as 15M, now 25S, acamapdasol; acampadabcn, Spanish revolution; indignad@s and indignadas feministas (indignant / indignant feminists), democracia real ya (real democracy now) are different platforms which all form part of a social movement of resistance and protest against the austerity politics, against Troika, and missing participatory democracy .
Some of the platforms take their name after a concrete day of actions that starts a wave of protests. The original one was 15M, from the beginnings of the mass protests and occupy camps on 15 May 2011, standing for a movement with no leaders and no rigid structures that shares certain philosophies (non-violence, non-hierarchical) and means of organization (assemblies, work groups, networks…). Since it is not a union or a party, the media turned 15M into a label for all the non-institutionalised popular protests organized by local assemblies and meetings, different commissions and joined together again by achieving commitments on the national level.
According to coordinadora25S, now the 25S platform seems to be an evolution, because 15M protested against the situation but could not agree entirely on common solutions, or splitted in sub-groups that advocated for different goals, hence, Democracia Real Ya (DRY ) is somehow parallel but apart from 15M. Another difference is that 25S directly rejects the government and the constitution and aims to open a new process of recovering democracy. Most of the people at 15M, or the acampadas (occupy-camps of the 15M protests in the squares) and/or some of the concrete groups focused on certain struggles (“marea verde” for public teachers, “marea blanca” for public healthcare, and so on) or collectives (feminist or GLTB ones) are now part of 25S. We will see what comes next.
See recent interview with protest movement for a social change:
IINTERVIEW with protest platform #25S in Spain: Will they follow the Icelandic way?
And some press reviews on the subject:
Spain: 25S goes arround de world. Is violence the only news worthy?
More information on 15M 2011:
#15M growing structures – changing strategies