Friday, April 14, 2006

The world is actually bigger than you

"The world is actually bigger than Cuba and South Florida. Hard to believe, I know, but not everyone...cares about the stuff you lost in 1959. Or 1968. Or whenever. Yes, it's sad. But most people in the world just...don't care."

That was one of the nation's 25 most influential Hispanics by Time magazine speaking to a fellow Cuban blogger who chooses to blog about his passion speaking against Fidel Castro and daily trying to put the truth about the real Cuba out there; debunking all those nice, flowery, nostalgic NYT Cuba and Fidel Castro (and oh yes, Che Guevara too) stories. Setting the record straight; disseminating truth.

Read it again, read the despise, the arrogance, the devaluation, the denigration, the lessening (my emphasis):

but not everyone...cares about the stuff you lost in 1959. Or 1968. Or whenever.

Stuff? One of the nation's 25 most influential Hispanics thinks that Cubans, excuse me Miami Cubans, are centered on STUFF? As in property stuff? I'd like to see the reaction of this Hispanic author if the government came and took his/her home away. Evicted all of them - spouse and children - onto the street and in the time it takes the glue of a label stuck on the door to dry, gather your belongings. Minutes. No place to live, no roof, no home, no clothes, no food. No job either because of course that too was taken away.

This author perpetuates the image that all Cuban exiles were millionaire prissys that are crying over losing their mansions - the spilled milk metaphor. Boy do I have a reality check for this person. But that's not an argument I will have here. This is about something bigger than me and bigger than this Hispanic author.

Stuff? Property? Yes people lost property they worked hard to attain; in many cases the ONLY thing they had. They lost businesses they built with their hands through years of hard work and little sleep. But property is recuperable.

Cubans also lost their freedom; but that too is recuperable - they regained in the US, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, and the many other enclaves they formed in exile. So yeah, they lost Stuff.

They also lost something else; something that escapes the "influential" mind of this Hispanic author, something monumental. In all the rage, anger, rancor, venom and despise spewed at the fellow Cuban blogger, Miami Cubans and Cubans in general, you see a lack of sensitivity, regard, consideration, and even respect.

Cubans also lost people. PEOPLE. Hardly qualifies as stuff now does it?

Fathers, husbands, sons, daughters, wives, aunts, uncles, grandfathers, grandmothers, brothers, sisters, and even the unborn. Viciously murdered, assassinated because they opposed, were associated with opposition, were considered counter-revolutionary. Killed at el paredón without a just and fair trial, but instead with a circus summary trial which consisted of "the state finds you guilty and sentences you to death". Lost PEOPLE. Lost Family.

PEOPLE you cannot recuperar. People are lost forever. Someone assassinating, or cutting short the life of your family for their own selfish goal is not the kind of thing you forget, the kind of thing others refer to as "stuff..whenever..don't care."

Losing a loved one is a big enough reason to hate Fidelito and friends (Che Guevara included) for a lifetime; enough reason to never forget, to never want to allow others to forget because the moment you allow their sacrifice to be forgotten, you are betraying them. You are erasing their existence. But heck, to this Hispanic influential author, they are Just Stuff.

Tell that to the Chileans and Argentineans who lost loved ones and had desaparecidos under the Pinochet and Videla dictatorships respectively. They still talk about it, they still fight about it, they still want these dictators brought to justice and to pay for assassinating their loved ones. For them it's not Stuff. It's JUSTICE. And for justice you fight all your life, because loved ones deserve it. You learn to never to give up; to keep fighting - to never quit.

So, bothered by this monumental omission and disregard on his/her part, I wrote a comment on this author's blog that basically summarized what I've discussed here - to be considerate when writing such a blanket statement; to have more regard for those who lost PEOPLE. Needless to say, my comment was not published. It was CENSORED, SILENCED.

Comment moderation is to moderate, not for CENSORING opposing views. Rather than admit you were wrong, that you made a blanket statement in which you had not considered the consequences, rather than expose such a fault and lack of sensitivity to your followers on your blog who feed your ego, you CENSOR.

I'm Cuban-American. My mother is Cuban my father is Spanish. They lost everything - property, freedom, and people. I'm very proud of being an American, love this nation and what it stands for. I'm very proud of my heritage, my language, my music, my culture. Most of all, I'm proud of the fact that I respect other people's pain, other people's passion, other people's desires, other people's opinions. It's important to them, it's their soul, it's who they are and it's called RESPECT. What kind of person would I be if I didn't?

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