Some of the young men and women who in this new millennium represent the " Judgment at the Bottom of the Sea" came to life when other fish-people were already publicly expressing their disagreement with the aggression suffered by the marine environment back in 1982.
The " Judgment " was born as a metaphor in defence of life, of the environment in which we live and which we seem to appreciate so little. The old murga sung by "Los Parrandistas" was the necessary excuse to publicly denounce a situation that if it was bad then, it is no better now.
Pollution has increased in the bay, and the carracachos have disappeared as a consequence.
The muergos are practically extinct after abusive fishing with chemical, aggressive and irrational methods that poison and asphyxiate the area. The trawls and trammel nets continue to do their thing. The purification of waste water in the different municipalities along the shores of the bay is still non-existent. The little anchovy that is left is crushed in spring, summer, autumn... Ecological disasters strike everywhere in the world.
Twenty-three years have passed but we are still like yesterday. The media wake us up every day with polluting spills, sinking oil tankers, lost or damaged nuclear submarines threatening us with their radioactive cargo.
The message that the "Judgement" is trying to convey is therefore still valid. It is addressed to a population that lives in direct contact with the sea. What would Santoña be without its fishing fleet, without anchovies and tuna processed industrially or in the traditional way, without rods and tackle in the fishing boats, on the breakwaters, on the bridges or on the breakwater? What would the bay be without the species that can still be fished? What would it be without clams, snails, oysters, mussels, mussels, mussels, mussel beds, squid, stuffed mussels, cuttlefish, cuttlefish, red mullet, red sea bream, sea bream, sea bream, sea bass, shrimps, shrimps, dentex, amberjack, pout, pouting tails, witches, witches, wrasse, rays, rays, scrapers, salvaréos, octopus, porgy, limpets, giltheads, ... Will we have to build, as has already been tried, an artificial fish farm when we have a natural fish farm? The bay, the sea in general, is an ecosystem that produces an immense but not inexhaustible wealth. Let us exploit it rationally, without unnecessary aggression, without crushing it. Let us allow it to produce while respecting its nature, fishing in a traditional way.
The " Judgment at the Bottom of the Sea " is the forum used by the mute inhabitants of the sea to tell us, through the voice we lend them, that they depend on us, on our coherence and our respect for an environment that is common to us, so that neither they nor we disappear from planet Earth.
The plastic and external beauty that surrounds the representation of the "Judgement" with its "Paseo del Reo" and the "Entierro del Besugo" would be meaningless if its raison d'être were lost: its expressiveness, its denunciation, that reversal of roles that is the essence of Carnival, that magic that makes the fish speak with our voice to tell us their problems, which are ours. To tell us about the sailors, boatmen and shellfish gatherers who live with them. So that we do not forget historical events that took place in these waters, so that, in short, we do not break our relationship with the environment in which we live for a misunderstood progress that can lead us to lose, irremediably, the privileged environment that we have been lucky enough to know and enjoy.
Jose Carlos Juncal Ibaceta