By Osmel Ramirez Alvarez
HAVANA TIMES – It seems that things can’t go on like this, but things don’t budge. Few want this, but we can’t remove it. The Government puts on a show to try and fool us like it has over the past 62 years, but it can’t anymore. Although it doesn’t seem to mind, because it has the police, Army, the courts, and the media in its pocket.
Political opposition both on and outside the island continues to lack enough popularity to make a difference and bring about change. With more tension than unity, people here still see them as something alien. They have lot of projects, it’s true, but none of them has won over the masses, who apparently see things differently. Or are we Cubans stupid or sheep like the mediocre call us? I’m sure we’re not.
Therefore, in that context, we are heading for greater chaos of the system and greater desperation for change among the general population. This is what the ruling class lives off, in these loopholes of power, of social peace amid this domestic Cold War which isn’t to the death but keeps us in a constant state of distress.
Defamation and mean-hearted attacks are the prize for anyone who has a bit of common sense. Anyone who proposes something different to the status quo is evil, and our future becomes bleak. They get attacked from mediocre minds from the different extremes.
The reasons? Socialism is to blame. “Imperialism” is to blame. The PCC is to blame. Or is it mercenaries? It seems like there is no solution for Cuba and that we are trapped down a dead-end street: a huge dilemma.
We had the July 11th protests and while they were important – and will be even more useful yet – it couldn’t be built upon because… well, because of everything I’ve said up until now. Nothing has changed since then, if not for the worse, and we’re sitting ducks, afraid of the police, attorney-generals, judges, jailers. Nothing can protect us from the system’s iron fist, which is still strong. Too strong. The Cuban people know this. They suffer because of it. They feel it. They carry its weight.
Is there any hope?
The night is dark. Very dark. Too dark even, it’s true. Who can deny this? But we aren’t “premature babies” to lose faith in ourselves as we learn from “the most believable” to have “faith in human improvement” and “in the usefulness of virtue.”
It seems like the “dominos are stuck” and that “unripe guavas are no good for anything.” But that’s just the way things look. The reality is that we’ve never had so many of our people stop believing in the system, in their promises and their fear for freedom which exists “in the outside world” beyond what they created and control for us. They no longer hold the hearts of the Cuban people, just too many minds still, because of fear. This is why we are closer than we’ve ever been, not out of blind faith, but because the time has come, and we must step up to it.
Our people are ready to support change, that’s a fact. Those that still aren’t ready, despite so much suffering, are people who carry the dignity of millions on their shoulders, the kind that Marti called “the essential ones.” For every human group needs guides to prevent chaos, even though some people deny this. Or sink into paralysis.
We just need to look at real Cuban people, not the imaginary version. Potential leaders need to interpret their aspirations, dreams, and real needs, not their own, no matter how beautiful they seem. They need to be guided to bring the new Cuba that is possible to life, not the impossible. The Best Cuba. We even must work out what kind of Republic we are ready for and which one we aren’t.
The Communist Party dictatorship is shaking between blackouts, shortages and migration tides, but it still hasn’t fallen and threatens to never fall. But without the Cuban people’s belief and with everything razed to the ground, what keeps them in power? Just the unfortunate combination of people’s fear and a lack of political realism. We just need to overcome the second to reduce the former and we’ll have what we long for: a better Cuba, for everyone and for everyone’s wellbeing.