HAVANA TIMES – It hasn’t been a month since reggaeton singer La Crema wrote lyrics to the stampede of Cubans through Nicaragua and he already has a new song about the unstoppable wave of emigration that the Island is experiencing. The explanation, for the popular artist, is very simple: “The prices go up, while others fill their bellies.”
Luis Alberto Vicet Vives, the real name of the artist, released “Se van” [They leave] this Friday on his social networks, his most recent musical theme about the Cuban migratory phenomenon. In the video clip, comical images of people packing suitcases alternate with those of airplanes taking off and landing. The rapper appears in a large part of the video singing and dancing in an airport terminal simulated with the chroma key technique.
“They leave in search of opportunities, those who can sell their properties leave,” the musician sings. Among the causes of the mass departure, he cites criminal acts and “outbursts,” although above all he refers to the increase in the cost of living.
“The prices in the store triple like magic. We are living in Cuba with the prices of Dubai,” he says ironically at another time. In addition, La Crema considers that it is the only way to succeed in life. “Many people who have left already have their company. What you will have in the yuma [USA] you will never have in Cuba,” he points out.
This Tuesday, the US Department of Customs and Border Protection confirmed that 16,657 Cubans arrived in the country illegally in one month. Since October 2021, and in the last five months, the number has risen to 47,431, of which the vast majority, 46,752, made it through Mexican border points.
Every week, the US Coast Guard intercepts Cubans in boats in operations that the governments of both countries consider very dangerous. However, those who make the decision to emigrate prefer to ignore the warnings and risk their lives crossing the sea (or borders, in the case of those who leave by land) rather than live in the current conditions on the Island.
“They’re leaving because they’re going crazy here and at the rate we’re going, Cuba is going to be empty,” the artist sings.
The avalanche of emigrants, after two years with the borders shielded by the pandemic, also coincides with a worsening of the economic crisis, which includes a rise in the cost of living, the devaluation of the peso and an increase in uncertainty about the future financial state of the country in the short and medium term.
In addition, repression has intensified and some who protested against the government on July 11, more for economic than political reasons, have ended up suffering the consequences of complaining to the authorities, who are ready to interpret any criticism as an attack on the system.
But not only opponents flee; those who have been state spokespersons have also found a refuge in their escape to express themselves freely, such is the case of Radio Rebelde announcer and television presenter Alejandro Quintana Morales, who arrived this week in the United States, “a country where, at last, I can feel free,” he wrote on his Facebook profile.
Previously, and amid criticism, the journalist and official Cuban television presenter Yunior Smith revealed that he was on the southern border of the United States, trying to request political asylum, after having criticized, in his programs, Washington’s policies towards Havana, while praising the Cuban regime.