To those who are new to understanding the plight of Cubans, these last few months are a culmination of decades of oppression by the Castro regime.
The Cuban people are tired, they are driven, and they wonder: what comes next?
When you sit down with a Cuban American, they often worry about the latter – that when the protests end, and the rousing buzz of the demonstrations fade, this moment will become a distant memory with no resolution. That things won’t change. After all they haven’t yet – why would they now?
The truth is simple, but impalpable. Things just feel different.
And this time, the world is watching.
If you’ve recently been to Miami or one of the thousands of Cuba Freedom Rallies across the U.S., then you recognize that feeling, too. Because Cuban Americans, like the majority of Americans, disapprove of socialism and communism and know that change on the island is long overdue.
As for those who are mistakenly in support of socialism, we caught up with Dr. Orlando Gutierrez- Boronat, Member of the Assembly of the Cuban Resistance and co-founder of the Cuban Democratic Directorate, who had this to say:
“Socialism is a hallucination. It’s an idea of human nature that is horribly flawed. It conspires against the good, the noble, and the productive in every human being. And it’s a way for a certain personality – a criminal personality – to take power through supposedly legitimate means. So anytime you concentrate power, you risk corruption and you risk abuse. And socialism is a system that leads you straight to that.”
Sylvia Iriondo, President of Mothers and Women Against Repression, offered similar sentiments, particularly about the infatuation some young Americans have with idealizing socialism and communism.
The youth “need to know the meaning and the truth about socialism and communism,” Sylvia stated. “It is evil and it destroys one’s dignity and one’s self.”
Sylvia knows this firsthand. She was born in Cuba and came to the United States in 1960. On a three-plane mission with the group Brothers to the Rescue, a humanitarian organization that works to rescue refugees trying to escape from Cuba, two planes were shot down by the Castro Regime. Sylvia was one of only a few survivors who narrowly escaped.
So the next time one thinks that socialism is the future, they should remember Sylvia’s story and Orlando’s teachings.
That is what communism looks like.