Wednesday, June 27, 2012

My reply

In relation to my item about the looky looky men, Bill from Mazarron says:

I have no particular brief for these, generally 'black', vendors of various items, but I do have to say I detect a little whiff of racism in your article.
We have the same 'problem' with these people in Mazarron and indeed I have noticed it in many other parts of Spain, but at least these folks are not 'stealing', mugging or breaking into people's homes. They are trying to make some kind of a living, more than can be said for some others.
If they are in Spain illegally, then they need to be rounded up and eventually deported, if present legally then their feeble efforts at paying their way should not be denigrated. Of course I know that many of them will be selling mostly fake goods, but probably not any less effective or durable than the piles of cheap rubbish that most of the recent influx of 'Chinese bazaars' stock.
I do get irritated with these folks sometimes, too, but compared to their difficult lives my own life is pretty comfortable and, to be honest, when one tells them to go away I have always found that they do without any undue unpleasantness.
Life is difficult in Spain just now, of course, for many people. I'm sure if the Spanish authorities really wished to 'get rid of' this 'problem' they could do so without too much trouble, but I suppose it boils down to the fact that the authorities have not forgotten that basic humanity is important, too, and for that I think they deserve some recognition, a not unremarkable thing in my view during the financial crisis the country is going through.

If my item came over as racist, I do apologise because that was not my intention. It doesn’t matter what county these people come from or what colour their skin is, what they are doing is illegal.  If they were British, Spanish or any other nationality, it would be equally wrong.

To make matters worse, they are now using force to try and intimidate the police and authorities into turning a blind eye to their activities. Blocking one of the main roads in Torrevieja for the whole afternoon has not helped their case.  It’s really nothing to do with whether their presence in bars and restaurants is annoying, the law against sale of counterfeit goods has to be upheld by the police.

We all feel sorry for these people. As far as i am aware, they are dragged over from their native land on the pretence that they will find honest employment in Spain only to end up scratching a living selling counterfeit goods, no doubt living in appalling conditions as well. Unfortunately, feeling sorry for them does not excuse what they do. The Chinese todos may sell similar quality goods but at least they are legal.

1 comment:

Bill said...

Thank you for making my comment the subject of a new article. For clarity, although I have a holiday home near Mazarron, and spend several months (4-5 or perhaps a bit more)) a year there I am currently (since last week) back at my home in the UK - the summer temperatures of Spain do not appeal to me, specially as I spent many years living in even hotter climates in the Middle and Far East.

To reiterate, however, what I said in my comment in relation to your earlier article, if the presence of these people in Spain is illegal then they need to be rounded-up for eventual deportation. Obviously the selling of counterfeit goods is illegal and needs to be stopped, but even whilst visiting Torrevieja, which I do from time to time, I have never felt threatened by them - even on occasion when they have come into a restaurant where I was lunching, they have gone away when we (me and my companion) have indicated our lack of interest; I have never felt remotely threatened and if I had felt so intimidated I would have had no hesitation in making a complaint first to the restaurant and if ignored to the Guardia Civil. Yes, their 'blockade' of an official building is unacceptable if it did occur, but I do not believe that the Spanish authorities would simply stand idly by in such circumstances; of course, persons who had been threatened by people could help themselves and the authorities by making genuine complaints official in the form of 'denuncias' and as abundantly clear 'hojas de reclamacion' are available in all Spanish commercial establishments, according to the notices which they all display, presumably in compliance with the law.