By Benjamin Noria
HAVANA TIMES – On October 7, 2021, an article was published in the sports section of Granma newspaper with the headline: “Why are baseball players leaving? Fragile ethical and moral values underlie every desertion (the opening ended), written by Oscar Sanchez Serra.
In the fourth paragraph, the journalist says that: “There’s no need to hide the ball, what’s happening with Cuban baseball players forms part of the US Government’s (past and present) strategy to destroy the Revolution. Baseball is the perfect target in this ambition, because it’s in our DNA, the roots of our nationality; in our patriotic values, from the time of the Mambises in the 19th century; it’s a national distinctive feature and is our culture.”
That said, the Cuban government had ordered this article to be written (I say this because it’s a well-known fact that there is no freedom of press or speech in Cuba, it’s the Communist Party’s Ideology Department that decides what can and can’t be said in a newspaper) to justify the desertion of Cuban baseball players and to pin the US Government as the main culprit, like it always does.
The US is always to blame for every problem here in Cuba. It seems that the desertion of Cuban baseball players isn’t the only thing the US government is responsible for. They are also the reason why the Economic Reforms Process failed, why the Cuban Cuban Communist Party’s Social, Political and Economic Guidelines failed, why sugar mills are inefficient, why our bread is made badly, why minced soy looks like slime, why two cellphones can’t enter the country through Cuban Customs and why medicines and food couldn’t enter either, why it’s illegal to buy lobster or beef, why Cubans weren’t able to enter a hotel for many years, etc.
In terms of the fragile ethical and moral values that have allegedly broken down in Cuba because of the US government, we can’t ignore the fact that Cuban baseball players who left the U-23 Baseball World Cup (half the team) and signed contracts to play in the major leagues, for example; have done this to live like Sandro Castro, one of Fidel Castro’s grandchildren who has luxury properties in Havana, as well as a club/bar that he himself promotes on Facebook, or drive flashy cars, like the ones this young man travels in.
What’s wrong with Cuban baseball players leaving the team when they leave the country to have the same cars, yachts, bank accounts, private companies abroad and apartments in different countries around the world like the Castros do, or a Mercedes Benz like Miguel Diaz-Canel has?
I think that if the Castros and Miguel Diaz-Canel don’t have weak morals and ethics after living over 40 years of the Revolution with luxuries and an opulent lifestyle, nothing will happen to Cuban baseball players’ morals or ethics either, just because they want to leave the country to seek prosperity, economic progress and a better life.