"Words cannot be locked in a cage": radio host invokes famous phrases on freedom

“Words cannot be locked in a cage. They simply fly away”. With this quote from Catalan writer Montserrat Roig, and a series of eloquent phrases on freedom and democracy from some of humanity’s great literary minds, Catalan public radio host Mònica Terribas opened her Friday morning show and answered the criticism she has received from Spain’s Popular Party (PP). The PP has laid a complaint about the journalist to the Electoral Commission for Barcelona province arising from an editorial in the section “The front page” on Catalunya Radio’s breakfast programme. The accusation is that Terribas breached the neutrality which she is required to maintain as a public broadcaster during an election campaign. Terribas offered a succession of powerful quotes from some of the world’s best known authors, from Camus to Orwell via Chomsky and Roig – well-known to her Catalan audience – as an implicit answer to the PP’s complaint. She introduced them by saying: “And as many times as we need to, we will recall these words”. Below is the full audio of the editorial read by Mònica Terribas this Friday at 7am, in Catalan, with the full text in English following it: Translation: Good morning! Wake up Catalonia. It’s 7 o’clock. We are “The Morning with Catalonia Radio”… As many times as necessary, we’ll recall these words: “If man fails to reconcile justice and freedom, he fails in everything.” – Albert Camus “Words cannot be locked in a cage: they simply fly away.” – Montserrat Roig “If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all.” – Noam Chomsky “Freedom is the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” -George Orwell “They that can give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” – Benjamin Franklin “Without general elections, without freedom of the press, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, without the free battle of opinions, life in every public institution withers away, becomes a caricature of itself, and bureaucracy rises as the only deciding factor.” – Rosa Luxemburg In the public media, we believe in these words and for that reason we struggle, and we will always struggle, to try and stop them falling into darkness. In her editorial on 28th November, which is the subject of the PP’s electoral complaint, Terribas referred to the “imprisoned ministers” and to Carles Puigdemont as “exiled president”, terms whose use has been banned in public media by the Central Electoral Commission, as Catalonia prepares for its election on December 21st.

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