Continuing the struggle
Reading all the lies disseminated by the MSM, politicians, and Castro apologists in regards to Cuba's reality day-in and day-out can be frustrating. That we, those intransigent "hardliners," have been able to hold on to the truth and our integrity after 50 years of propaganda is amazing. And when I come across an editorial like this one, where you have a journalist from of all places, Vermont, standing up for Cubans and what is right, you realize that if it wasn't for those Cuban "hardliners" that battle every day against the lies being disseminated by the vociferous supporters of the Castro dictatorship throughout the world, we would have lost this battle a long time ago.
Mike Smith from the Burlington Conservative Examiner examines the Study Abroad Program being offered by Burlington College where students get to spend a semester studying at the University of Havana. Mr. Smith is all for students being able to travel to diverse and interesting places and believes the experience is well worth the effort. Yet, he has a problem with Burlington College's Cuba Study Abroad program.
Which leads me to the fundamental reason for my ambivalence toward BC's Cuba Study Abroad Program. The idea of visiting a country whose government forbids its subjects to leave its borders does not sit well with me. No matter how invigorating the academic programs, no matter how enlightening the cultural exposure, no matter the quality of the prostitutes, I would still feel like just another ignorant rich American tourist fawning over the quaintness of the Third World – while its inhabitants have no choice but to remain there after I jet back to the land of opportunity. And that's exactly what I would be.
BC's website states, “Cuba is a society that has gone its own way against enormous odds and has developed a society unlike any other.” Maybe I'm rushing to judgment a little early, but somehow I don't think this introductory soft-soap treatment will adequately address the real problems facing the people of Cuba. Sandy Baird added, “We...think that Cuba...is a dynamic, vital, incredibly interesting, and unique society...it's very active in the arts, in culture, in history, in politics.”
Also, it's Communist.
Whenever you hear or read about someone calling us "hardliners," raise your head up and be proud of the label. We are incessantly attacked because we are a constant reminder of the hypocrisy and the racism that infects those that choose to support a vile regime and belittle our struggle for freedom. As long as we are here, we will continue to be the voice of 12-million oppressed souls who they want to silence. As long as we are here, we are proof that there are humans living in Cuba, not chattel. And while we continue to tell the truth about Cuba, there will be people, like Mike Smith, who will hear it and get it.
The day they stop calling us "hardliners," will be the day we lose the battle for liberty.