Ultra-dominant two-time MotoGP World Champion Marc Márquez. is doing what many other successful athletes do: moving to a tax haven. In this case, Márquez is moving to Andorra. Some Spanish fans don't like this. Let's take a look at how terrible people handle this kind of news, shall we?
On one hand, I get it. The Spanish economy is only now starting to dig itself out of a major economic and financial crisis which left over a quarter of all Spanish citizens unemployed at one point. Hometown hero Márquez has been a beacon of hope, proudly flying the Spanish flag after his MotoGP wins and overall being a positive ambassador for the troubled country.
Now he's taking his pile-o-cash and establishing residency in Andorra, a small principality between Spain and France with a much more favorable tax rate. This shouldn't come as a surprise.
For one, being a great Spaniard in Spain means that it's increasingly difficult for Márquez to live a relatively normal life without being pestered ad nauseum by people who recognize him in public. People are even messing with Márquez's grandparents, if Redditor Myrelin is correct. So, in lieu of taking a large steel pipe to the kneecaps of anyone caught messing with his family, he's moving outside of Spain proper and getting a little space.
Secondly, athletes in top-level motorsports do this sort of thing all the time, and Spanish athletes are no different. Two-time Formula One World Champion Fernando Alonso moved to Switzerland at one point, both for the tax rate and later to be closer to Ferrari. MotoGP rider Dani Pedrosa also moved to Switzerland. Hey, at least Andorra still shares a border with Spain.
No one tries to claim that Lewis Hamilton isn't British anymore when he moved to Monaco. Just sayin'.
With all the instability in the Spanish economy, I'm not sure I can blame Márquez for looking elsewhere for financial reasons, either. New residents who move to Andorra from Spain still have to pay Spanish taxes for five years, so this move can't be 100% financial, at least in the short term.
Some disappointment that a hometown hero is moving out of the country is to be expected. Maybe even a little bit of anger or frustration is kosher, too. But nope, that's not how genuinely terrible excuses for human beings roll. Let's take a look.
Google Translate Version: "Hey, @MarcMarquez93, after using health, education, roads, etc. we all pay, what you go to Andorra is very miserable."
Let's start off with a pretty reasonable concern. This fellow's disappointed that Márquez has used all of the public services available in Spain and won't be funding them anymore. (Well, after five years, anyway.) Okay.
Google Translate Version: "Marc Màrquez have always been at the heart Andorra, just above the inside pocket where he keeps the portfolio."
Ahhhh, here comes the hyperbole. Márquez's heart is where his portfolio is. AH, SICK BURN.
This is one of the calmer ones, too, but it's clearly a dude going "if we can't have you, nobody can!" in the most temper-tantrumy way possible. Wishing that Márquez never wins another championship if he moves is the sorta-grown-up equivalent of licking the last Tootsie Roll Pop before handing it over to the kid who wanted it. You can have it, but you can't have it. NYAH.
Google Translate Version: "I burn much cases such as Marc Márquez. These are then wrapped in the flag. You go weaving of Andorra."
Now we're getting into the looney bin. "WRAP YOURSELF IN ANDORRA'S FLAG AND BURN, TRAITOR!"
[Clarification: This guy doesn't actually say "burn," but the whole "you're leaving us, so you're not Spanish anymore" line of reasoning is SMH-worthy. Really, guys? In 2014?]
Google Translate Version: "Shameful @marcmarquez93, many flag of Spain and Andorra pyre to not let a hard here. Go Patriots have shit. #boicot"
Google kind of fails us here, but I'm guessing the gist of this is something akin to "SHAME ON CRAPPY PATRIOTS! BURN THAT ANDORRA POOPFLAG! BOYCOTT THINGS!"
Google Translate Version: "MotoGP: Marc Marquez moves to Andorra to pay less | THE WORLD ... go away to hell, and that q're a kid ..... http://www.elmundo.es/deportes/2014/…07 / 5483852bca4741d66c8b457f.html"
Simple, angry and to the point. Also, a little judgey and ageist, but whatevs.
Google Translate Version: "Marc Márquez will Andorra to pay less tax. That Fuck, fucking stingy, yuck days."
Google Translate Version: "Hi, I'm Marc Marquez and laugh about you and your whole fucking family currrelas http://www.eleconomista.es/publicidad/ref…"
Uh-huh. Never mind that Marquez continues to support Spanish charities and will continue to pay taxes like a regular resident of Spain for the next five years. He's laughing at us all! Can't let facts get in the way of good ol' fashioned sweary outrage, can we?
Google Translate Version: "@marcmarquez93 M has disappointed with what you go to Andorra to not pay taxes here. So you help the citizens. Q das penalty. CLAY IDOL"
Maybe the Spanish tabloids are ragging hard on Andorra's tax haven status, but it appears as though he's still going to be contributing to the Spanish economy for a while. Maybe these tweets will convince him to move further away to Switzerland or Monaco (but I doubt it).
Google Translate Version: "@marcmarquez93 As a driver you're the best. But as a Spanish citizen you are a deserter. Which are to encourage those of Andorra, asshole."
If moving counts as desertion now, I had the Eddie Slovik of childhoods. I even deserted Wichita Falls twice! That glorified fountain of a fake waterfall needed me or something. Sweet overreaction, bro. Talk to us when he skips out on Spanish taxes he'll owe in Andorra and/or removes all the Spanish country of origin flags from next to his name on MotoGP broadcasts.
Google Translate Version: Consideration should be given to enact a law prohibiting compete in Spain someone who does not have the fiscal residence...http://www.eleconomista.es/espana/noticia…
This guy wants to straight-up ban Márquez from competition in Spain.
"If we can't have him, nobody can!"
Márquez has lost quite a few Twitter followers from this outpouring of butthurt, down to 1.26 million from 1.3 million before the announcement broke. He's a nice dude who's represented Spain well and doesn't quite deserve the level of vitriol that this move to Andorra is getting.
Let's be honest: if this were a cold, heartless, "I hate Spain and never, ever want anything to do with those ungrateful poopsacks again" move, he'd be packing it up for somewhere farther like the Caymans instead.
Photo credit: Getty Images