By Martin Guevara
HAVANA TIMES — In 1966, the renowned Beat Generation activist and intellectual Allen Ginsberg was invited to Cuba’s Casa de las Americas cultural center by Haydee Santamaria. Shortly afterwards, he was unceremoniously expelled from the country for criticizing the repression of homosexuals ordered by the uncle and father of Mariela “Rainbow” Castromasov – and perhaps he was also kicked out of the country for being a homosexual himself.
I wonder: are there no people, people with greater moral authority, to lead any type of change in Cuba other than the members of that family?
Is there not a single gay man or lesbian more knowledgeable of the needs of their community, and more entitled to lead their movement, than this woman? Is she the only one who can do this?
Today, Mariela shows us a well-developed aspect of her personality, concealing her wish to remain in power less and less, referring to those who oppose her parent’s feudal rule as a handful of ignorant sell-outs.
It seems both pathetic and incredible that a well-meaning person who once sympathized with that distant revolution should, after considerable effort, establish some type of link between that bearded revolt and this wasted ruin, managing to feel the same sympathy for this heap of nonsense.
In the imperfect but up to a certain point free world, we permit ourselves to refer to the most backward sectors as “intolerant” – some even call them “fascists” – because they merely content themselves with free national, municipal and autonomous elections every four years, in contrast to the exemplary “angry protesters,” who demand permanent democracy. That is enough for us to consider them cavemen.
I can’t imagine any politician in any civilized country, not even the most conservative out there, who would dare boast of having outlawed all opposition to the government for over fifty years, much less publicly refer to this opposition as a “handful of ignorant and corrupt people,” thus dismissing those who, despite the difficulties and risks, peacefully struggle for changes and greater participation in the nation’s politics.
Mrs. Rainbow Castromasov feels she can lecture us about corruption.
Could there be a clearer example of corruption than clinging to power for more than half a century while crushing any semblance of opposition?