HAVANA, Cuba.- This Sunday morning I had to endure a rain of messages from emigrant friends, who mockingly told me that the may day parade it had been a success. With contempt they criticized the “train of rams” that attended, under supposed pressure, the call of an infamous government that at this time boasts of the citizen’s response to the call, of the symbolic defeat of the enemy when seeing that sea of people parading for the Civic Square that already detracts from its name, under the most ridiculous and false slogan that could be invented: “Cuba lives and works.”
My first impulse was to remind my émigré friends that most of these people went to the parade out of obligation; But after the pandemic and July 11, it seems indecent to me to justify such hypocrisy with the fear of losing a toilet and food module, or of receiving a disciplinary measure that could affect retirement.
Countless fears made yesterday’s parade possible; but it was no less repugnant for that to see thousands of Cubans marching in defense of low wages, inflation, lack of productivity, lack of rights, the health debacle caused by the mishandling of the epidemiological crisis, the filth and destruction that surround, the obscene enrichment of the political caste while extreme poverty multiplies throughout the country, the repression, the prisoners of July 11, mass migration, helpless old age, indoctrinated and malnourished childhood, amorality inoculated to the point of marrow; in short, the achievements of the Revolution.
The people of Cuba, so lacking in shame and character, gave in once again to blackmail which, of course, is real, as evidenced by a message circulated among the workers of the “Antonio Guiteras” polyclinic in Old Havana, and in the audio of the trial of May 1st in a Cienfuegos company. More than workers, the Island is full of automatons who agree to be treated like children in a morning show. If yesterday they repeated the motto, today they invent slogans. They squeeze their brains, stunned by so many deprivations, to compose an anodyne phrase that they then chant without force, because they are all tired of the same thing, but not enough to stop being an instrument of the dictatorship.
Anyone would say that Cubans have not been hungry enough, nor have they been humiliated enough. This Sunday’s parade produced nothing but disgust, disappointment and anger, because among those tens of thousands who came to the square there are many beneficiaries of remittances and top-ups sent by emigrants, those remote hostages who work like mules to spend on the support from their relatives the money they could invest in making their own dreams come true. All things considered, the motto of this May 1st is both cynical and precise: those from over there work so that those from here can live.
The regime continues to apply the old formula and the people fall into the trap like a stupid calf. Everyone to the parade and from there to the popular fair, to fall on the bread with minutes and beer in bulk; to the ugly and poor quality recycled clothing, scattered on the ground, after all the poor do not pay attention to those things; to descaler and liquid detergent; to the truck of garlic, onion and tomato puree in plastic cucumber reheated in the sun; or to a module of almost 800 pesos that consisted of a sausage, a gallon of detergent and a bottle of soda.
Cuba is hunger and propaganda. The first to keep people giddy, the second so that the dishonest world left continues to believe that this tyrannized island is an indestructible bastion of socialism. We Cubans will never know how much lodging and entertainment for the May First International Brigade has cost us, made up of old communists and young turncoats who visited the den of informers known as the “Quisicuaba” Association, but remained unperturbed by the overwhelming indigence of the neighborhood.” Los Sitios”, where it is located.
During the parade, those same foreigners saw many Cubans dancing behind a political conga. If at some point the devastation of Havana caused them to doubt the usefulness of socialism, so much enjoyment ended up assuring them that we are definitely “painting together the landscape of unity and continuity,” another primary school carving bearing the signature of Díaz- Cinnamon.
Cuba is a cursed country, with a short memory and a watery conscience. Only a people without dignity can lend themselves to a parade of support for the regime that preferred to build hotels and import rental cars instead of properly conditioning hospitals in the midst of a pandemic that cost many lives due to the lack of ambulances, drugs, supplies and medical oxygen. .
Only a people hopelessly bowed down can shout that Cuba lives and works while thousands of young people, children of all ages and even old people leave the Island, risking their lives to reach the southern border of the United States. Trampling behind a conga with such a tragedy in the background is iniquitous and makes the heart ache with sorrow, with anger. It is embarrassing to admit it, but the Cuban people have what they deserve, and they deserve what is coming.
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