Millennials in Spain tend to lean toward the progressive left, as seen in recent electoral results, because they lack an understanding of the basic principles of a free society, explains Isabel Benjumea, director of Atlas Network partner Red Floridablanca. In order to tackle this critical challenge for the future of liberty in Spain, Floridablanca held the first of a series of two-day conferences that address the primary political, economic, and social concerns of young Spaniards, and offer solutions based on the principles of individual liberty, equality before the law, and free-market economics.
“Young people in Spain feel that traditional political parties do no longer represent their views and provide satisfactory solutions to their problems — unemployment, lack of opportunities and economic mobility, a broken education system,” Benjumea elaborates. “At the same time, Spanish millennials do not just complain; they are not passive. They have strong political opinions, engage in economic disputes, and mobilize enthusiastically in support of all kinds of causes. They debate and participate in policy discussions through new means of communication and channel their messages in creative ways. They advocate through civil society and place no trust in bureaucracy.”
Floridablanca, founded in January 2015, brings the Spanish classical liberal tradition to the forefront of political thinking and discourse. The organization’s “Jornadas Millennials” conference series, which kicked off on Feb. 1–2 in Madrid, offers millennials a fruitful alternative to their frustrations: liberty. The events aim to encourage a constructive political debate on how to solve some of the main concerns that young Spaniards have, including those related to finding a job or becoming an entrepreneur; forming a family; receiving a competitive education; unleashing the power of free markets; analyzing new business models and the collaborative economy; and rethinking political parties to better respond to the demands of a new generation.
“Floridablanca, which in its two years of existence has rapidly become a renowned political forum in Spain, will bring to the different panels of these donferences young students and professionals, as well as notable thinkers, politicians, academics, and journalists from Spain and across the world,” Benjumea continues. “An innovative media campaign in mainstream and alternative media and social networks will also help raise the profile of the conferences and their outcomes. Empowering young people with sound intellectual tools that recognize the value of liberty is the most crucial challenge for Spain’s future — and Floridablanca is up for it.”
Video of the “Jornadas Millennials” panel discussions can be viewed on Red Floridablanca’s Facebook profile (videos in Spanish).