Give It Up, Castros

At one time, Cuba’s revolution created the best poor country in the Americas. Unlike the other countries of the Latin American region, which were also dictatorships and practiced the similar (sometimes far worse) human rights abuses, all the people there had things only the rich get in the Third World, like dentistry and coronary bypass surgery. 

Today, the rest of Latin America has caught up to and passed them. Chile no longer has a Pinochet. Argentines no longer disappear. Juntas no longer coup each other annually in Bolivia with US CIA backing.* 

But Cuba still arrests its citizens regularly for exercising free expression, including their family members, their friends. What’s the crime rate in a country where non-crimes are crimes? 

As you know, recently President Fidel Castro stepped down. Now the President is Raúl Castro Ruz.

Cuba is not doing to well on human rights under Raúl Castro Ruz. Despite one of his first acts being to release political prisoners, routine insults to human dignity have escalated ever since.

Christmas party participants where hip-hop was played rounded up, thrown in prison.
I do not know what I like least about this case – the charges, the long detention, the trial or the way they were arrested. The police showed up at the home of a Christmas party backed by a mob of government supporters. Now one can say being who they were they shouldn’t have been throwing a party… (they were members of a banned human rights activist group).  … but you have to understand everyone on Christmas Night parties all night long in Cuba – it is the wildest, most jubilant scene in all the world on Christmas Night. On every neighborhood street there’s music, dancing, fireworks and food. The police need to give their bullshit a rest. In fact, that about sums it up. Give that shit up. Hip Hop Hooray!

*well, not as much anyway — and I like how the Latin American countries today stand up for one another against U.S. hegemony.

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