It is something that every Cuban is well aware of, and something that any non-Cuban can confirm if they were to take the time and look: Cuba’s slave masters are racist. As badly as white Cubans are treated by the island’s dictatorship, non-whites — blacks, mulatos, mestizos — are treated even worse. There is an inherent and vile disdain towards any person of color held by the white nomenklatura of Cuba that is impossible to hide in Cuban society.
In an article in The Griot, Marlie Hall takes a look at the blatant racism that has existed in Cuba since 1959 that few in the civil rights movement here in the United Stares have been brave enough to address.
Rosa Parks refused to stand. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream. Barack Obama won the presidential election. America’ s plight for racial equality has had its struggles, its heroes and its progress. But on the nearby island of Cuba, some say modern-day racism against blacks is blatant, and fighting it isn’t as simple as public protest.
According to Afro-Cuban activists, racism against blacks in Cuba is systemic and institutional. They say, to this day, blacks are excluded from tourism related jobs, relegated to poor housing, have poor access to health care, are excluded from managerial positions and are more likely to be imprisoned.
As the poster child for leftist leaders and many in the civil rights movement, Fidel Castro has enjoyed an incredible amount of leeway in exercising a brutal and deadly apartheid on the island that targets anyone that is not white. The desire not to tarnish the image of one of their icons has caused many civil rights leaders to betray blacks in Cuba in favor of a white dictator of European descent. They look the other way as the son of a wealthy Spanish landowner persecutes Cubans simply because of the color of their skin.
For a half-century, Castro has enjoyed a free pass from those on the left to oppress, imprison, and murder black Cubans only for being black. But, as this article illustrates, the days of the world looking the other way as Cuba’s slave masters practice their particularly brutal style of apartheid may soon be nearing the end.
Our own Henry Gomez is extensively quoted in this article and it’s worth a read.