The reasons why it is “unconstitutional” that Spanish is not vehicular




Given “the false information that members of the Government and the parliamentary majority that supports it are pouring out,” from Catalan Civic Coexistence (CCC), an entity that has been defending in court for more than twenty years the right of parents so that their children can also study in Spanish in Catalonia, has prepared an argument, collecting the main judicial decisions that have been handed down in recent years in linguistic matters. «Giving Castilian a vehicular character in Catalan classrooms is a matter of mere execution of already final decisions of the courts, which depends on political will, “explains Coexistence in a statement.

The entity defends that “it is undoubted that the exclusion of Spanish as a vehicular language is unconstitutional”, and recalls that “the Supreme court (TS) has said, repeatedly and literally, with respect to the immersion system, that “this de facto exclusion of Castilian as a vehicular language perverts the linguistic model established in the Constitution of linguistic conjunction or integral bilingualism so that a model of linguistic immersion contrary to the spirit and letter of the Constitution ”».

In the opinion of Angel Escolano Rubio, president of CCC, and lawyer who took the defense of the parents before the Supreme Court, “we are facing an attempt to manipulate the population with falsehoods to make them believe that the exclusion of Spanish as a vehicular language fits in the Constitution, when it is a clear and accredited fact, collected in multiple judgments of the Constitutional Court (TC) and the Supreme Court, that does not fit »« The Government, through false information, intends to consciously manipulate the population, something that is totally contrary to the most elementary democratic principles and a rule of law, “adds Escolano.

According to the lawyer, “the nationalists and this Government intend to modify the Constitution by means of the facts, ignoring that to deprive Castilian of its vehicular character, article 3 of the Spanish Constitution would have to be modified, without a mere Law being able to do it; It is especially serious that those who should enforce the Constitution in Catalonia dedicate themselves to giving more quarters so that the Generalitat continues to trample on the constitutional order in matters of vehicular language and continues forcing parents to have to take on a judicial process so that it is simply complied with the Constitution”. Coexistence supports his words in the list of judicial decisions that have been handed down by the various state and regional courts in recent decades. The sentences that defend that Castilian remains a verhicular language are:

1-Judgment of the Supreme Court of December 9, 2010. The beginning of the end of language immersion in Catalonia. “It has been affirmed in a stubborn way by all the informants related to the current Government and the nationalists that linguistic immersion is a system endorsed by ordinary courts, perfectly legal and in line with the Spanish Constitution of 1978”, says the president of CCC and denies it. “That statement is flatly false. In this regard, since December 9, 2010, the unanimous, continuous and peaceful doctrine of the Supreme Court affirms the opposite in all the judgments that exist on the matter.

The ruling expressly stated that the language immersion system was contrary to the Constitution, according to CCC. It adds that the Contentious Chamber of the Supreme Court, when responding to this question, is very clear (Sixth Law Foundation, page 30) saying that the immersion system «This de facto exclusion of Spanish as a vehicular language perverts the linguistic model established in the Constitution of linguistic conjunction or comprehensive bilingualism so that a linguistic immersion model is implemented contrary to the spirit and letter of the Constitution. ” “The Chamber applies precisely the constitutional doctrine, which makes it crystal clear that the exclusion of Spanish as a vehicular language is contrary to the Constitution (as our entity alleged in its Appeal); it says (Seventh Law Foundation, p. 33). “

2-Sentence December 31, 2010 when ruling on section 1 and section 2 of article 35 of the Statute of Autonomy of Catalonia (EAC). «It is true that section 1 of art. 35 EAC omits literally any reference to Spanish as a teaching language. However, it cannot be understood that their silence regarding a circumstance that is imperatively derived from the constitutional model of bilingualism obeys a deliberate purpose of exclusion, since the statutory precept is limited to indicating the duty to use Catalan “normally as a vehicular language and learning in university and non-university teaching “, but not as the only one, without therefore preventing the same use of Spanish. Consequently, the second statement of art. 35.1 EAC is not unconstitutional interpreted in the sense that the mention of Catalan does not deprive Spanish of the status of vehicular language and learning in teaching ». “For the same reason, he adds Coexistence- the only recognition of a right to receive education in Catalan (first sentence of section 1 of art. 35 EAC) It cannot be interpreted as expressing an inadmissible legislative will of exception, so that the constitutionally admissible interpretation is the one that leads to the existence of this right to education in Spanish. The same must be said of the first sentence of section 2 of art. 35 EAC. Consequently, section 1 and the first subsection of section 2 of art. 35 EAC admits an interpretation in accordance with the Constitution in the sense that do not prevent the free and effective exercise of the right to receive instruction in Spanish as a vehicular and learning language in education».

«For the avoidance of doubt, in that same Foundation (page 34), the High Court says:“ And for this and in accordance with what has been stated heretofore, the contentious-administrative appeal should be upheld at the time it was filed, and the right of the appellant declared to what Spanish is used as a vehicular language in the educational system of the Autonomous Community of Catalonia in the appropriate proportion given the state of linguistic normalization reached by Catalan society, so that the same its use is not reduced to that of the object of study of one more subject, but rather its use as a teaching language and vehicle in teaching becomes effective “».

“Therefore, in view of this Judgment, we can categorically affirm that whoever says that the vehicular character of Castilian is not constitutionally guaranteed or that the courts have endorsed the immersion, is lying, without there being any margin to make any other type of qualification to the comments (since, as we can see, they contradict the literal tenor of the judicial decisions) ”, clarifies Escolano.

“Laziness and permissiveness”

According to CCC, “linguistic immersion continues to exist because the Government of Spain wants it.” “Given the clarity of the doctrine of the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court, which dismiss as unconstitutional the exclusion of Castilian as a vehicular language, it continues to exist due to the neglect and permissiveness of those who should be guarantors of legality,” the association denounces.

CCC explains that after the strong ruling of the TC, the Generalitat decided not to comply with it and the association, through its legal services, urged its compliance.

3-Order of the Superior Court of Justice of Catalonia (TSJC). As a result of this execution incident, an Order was issued by the Catalan high court, dated July 28, 2011 (doc. 2) in which the following was literally agreed: «Establish a maximum period of two months for the Department of Education of the Generalitat of Catalonia to adopt whatever measures it deems necessary to adapt the education system to the new situation created by the declaration of Sentence 31/2010 of the Constitutional Court that also considers Spanish as the vehicular language of education in Catalonia together with Catalan, having, after the aforementioned period, inform the Court of those adopted, with the legal consequences that its non-compliance may imply in the terms of article 112 of the Jurisdictional Law ”.

4- The Generalitat appealed this order, which was modified in a substantial way in its scope by the Order of March 8, 2012 of the Plenary of the Superior Court of Justice of Catalonia (doc. 3), in the sense of affirming that the Judgment of the Supreme Court could only affect the complaining father and the school environment (class) of his son, considering that he was not entitled to discuss the whole system. Said Order was confirmed by the Supreme Court with its Judgment of February 19, 2013 (doc. 4).

With this aberrant doctrine, Since that 2012 car, in Catalonia we have an educational system in force that is contrary to the letter and spirit of the Constitution (said literally by the Supreme Court), but which requires that parents who want to leave it, and therefore the Constitution governs their children’s school, have to initiate a judicial procedure that, in the face of the stubbornness of the Generalitat, it will have to conclude in the Supreme Court and with a whole string of procedural phases, all seasoned with the corresponding threats, demonstrations and pressure from the nationalists, “denounces Coexistence.

“Mafia behavior”

Despite the current situation, the association, which managed to raise 50,000 signatures of Catalan parents who want to end immersion, continues “to promote more procedures so that parents can” get out “of the unconstitutional system of linguistic immersion”, although he admits that “we are fully aware since 2013 that the mafia behavior of the Generalitat and its entities subsidized (Òmnium, Plataforma per la Llengua, etc …) are a element that discourages parents»..

«Therefore, since that time we have been trying to get any legal person that has an “interest”, that is, that can be considered as legitimated by the courts At the mercy of the doctrine they created for us, file the legal actions that would allow the order of July 28, 2011 to be reissued and, therefore, put an end to the immersion. Any of these legal entities (prosecution, State Government, Ombudsman) with a simple request and a subsequent demand could put an end to the immersion system, with almost total guarantees of success ”.

Inaction of PSOE and PP

After the inaction of “the governments of the PP and PSOE, which have never taken any action in this regard, at this time we are requesting other persons legitimated procedurally (Autonomous Communities) to initiate legal actions,” he says.

«Meanwhile, we will continue with the legal anomaly of having an educational system in force contrary to the letter and spirit of the Constitution from which they can onlyChildren should go if their parents dare to face a complex judicial process and mafia pressures from the Generalitat and its related entities ”, he concludes.

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