44 thoughts on “I fought the law…”

  1. Excellent article, Henry. We’d be lying through our teeth if each and every one of us who posts and comments on this blog and others haven’t felt at least a tinge of “why are we doing this” doubt. It happens to me a lot. But hell, someone’s got to stand up for freedom and for those poor brave souls in the gulag who wished they had a fraction of the freedoms we enjoy.

  2. Great story Henry! I saw the same lameojos withe the che flags back in 2006 Cuba vs. Santo Domingo game in San Diego. You should be proud that you got kicked out, at least you had the courage to do what many of us did not. Saludos.

  3. Hot Damn, Henry!..that’s all I can muster: Hot Damn!! Thanks for sharing that with us!!

    And that “Dashiell” bit–absolutely PRICELESS!!!!!!! That STUNG the bastard fifty times harder than any number of mawkish slogans you might have yelled.

    (BTW, During Batista’s diabolical tenure, when Cuban baseball players traveled,they did not require five security agents holding a gun to their head 24 hrs a day to prevent them from defecting. Indeed, ask Tommy Lasorda about the number of U.S. baseball players who clamored to ENLIST with Cuban teams, during that fiendish era.)

  4. I wonder if you have any legal recourse. Or was the only way for any legal recourse was for you to actually get arrested in the first place? I hope Cigar Mike can provide any input concerning this.

  5. “Val periodically has an existential crisis, during which he doubts whether what we are trying to do — raise awareness of the Cuban reality — is having any effect. It’s usually up to me to talk Val down from the ledge. The other night I found myself up there standing next to him.”

    You’ve raised awareness on this end.

  6. Damn right scary how the Cuban Secret Police can even control the U.S. Police force.

    The police, by the way, didn’t care one iota about your rights of free speech. Just wondering… whom have they sworn to serve and protect?

  7. Hey Henry,

    I was looking forward to this article, and I really enjoyed. I felt sad that you couldn’t express your opinions outside the stadium. Those damn Castro security bastards get freaked out because this country allows one to express themselves without any fear of persecusion. I was going to comment on how angry I was at the SDPD for not letting you speak out, but after reading your last comment on your article I can understand. I figured you didn’t want to risk anything more serious, but at least you spoke your mind during the game!

  8. Yes you may the right to free speech, but that does not give you or anyone else the inherent right to verbally abuse and heckle a visiting ball team. You may not agree with the politics of that country, but they are not politicians, they are ball players. Leave them alone and let them play ball. Two years ago I took my Little League Baseball Team to Cuba. 12 players all aged 12-13, and a group of coaches and parents. The purpose of our trip was to play ball. Yes we experienced a wide discrepancy in socio-economic status, cultural gaps, and political views. But the one common demoninator that brought all the people together was BASEBALL.

  9. …and the common denominator here, Buena Hoja, is that we can say what we want, when we want, whether you find it insulting or not.

    Good article, Henry.

  10. Henry:

    I am Not a fuckhead, nor am I an abnoxious american.
    I am proud to say that I am 100% Canadian.
    Canada does not have a useless embargo against Cuba.
    I am free to travel to Cuba as often as I wish.
    I am free to stay in Cuba as long as I wish.
    I am free to spend as much fula in Cuba as I want.

    You and your freedoms can’t speak of the same rights can you?
    So tell me Henry…….how free are you ???

  11. Buena Hoja,

    You may not be an obnoxious loud-mouthed American (even less a Cuban-American), but your comments qualify you as a loud-mouthed, rude Canadian who doesn’t appear to give a crap about where your money in Cuba goes to, nor the plight of the dissidents.

    If I’m wrong, here’s your stage to say so.

  12. I’m an American.

    It’s not the policy of our country to enable the totalitarian dictatorship 90 miles from our shores.

    Contrary to popular opinion I’m free to travel to Cuba as often as I wish. I could go with a church group, a humanitarian organization, or even by myself through a third country and while that last way is technically against the law, so is jay walking and speeding.

    But here’s the thing, the Cuban government is never going to let me in. Why? Why do you think, asshole?

    Let me ask you something jerky, what’s the net immigration of Canadians to the U.S. every year? Why do people want to leave the paradise of Canada where they are more free to live in the U.S. to be less free?


  13. Robert:

    This thread was suppossed to be about Baseball.
    Not politics, not Fidel, not about the dissedents.
    Don’t get these topics confused.

    Have you ever played Baseball?
    Not only does this sport teach players about physical fitness and good sportsmanship, more importantly, Baseball teaches kids good life skills.

  14. Shithead, this thread is about whatever I want it to be. Get it?

    I am FREE to write what I want here because this is my blog (and that of my colleagues). You on the other hand are not.

  15. And dummy, this whole blog is about Cuba and therefore it’s inherently about politics. This thread was started by me to link to a column I wrote which is explicitly political. I didn’t write this post to talk about the merits of the Cuban Shortstop (he’s old and has lost a step) or to amuse myself with the idea that sports is going to heal all the world’s problems. I’m sports fan and a baseball fan. But Cuba is a totalitarian state that uses sports to spread propaganda. I’m against the enabling of such activities in America. If the Cuban players can’t move around freely in the U.S. then we’re just aiding the regime in keeping them prisoners.

  16. Fuckhead?
    Buddy…….make up your mind?

    Your writing style obviously lacks integrity and common respect for others.
    I wish you well and hope that one day you may find harmony in your life.
    As for me, I will continue my journey to coach Baseball and all the aspects of human decency that ball players exemplify. And perhaps some day I may bring another team to play ball in Cuba. And when I do, I will make sure my boys treat the opponenets and members of the audience with that same respect.

  17. Have a nice life. I love the way you play the moral supremacy card. You come in here call Americans “obnoxious loudmouths” and when I decide to throw a few insults in your direction you get self-righteously indignant. If you hadn’t come in with insults then you wouldn’t have gotten them hurled back at you. Decency, my ass.

  18. Buena Hoja,

    I regret to inform you that we don’t buy you b.s. here.

    You see many of us on this blog were born in Cuba and experienced in our own skin the suffering of living under a Stalinist tyranny that you surely did not as you were a just tourist that when to Cuba to play baseball and could not care two shits about the evils of the Castro regime and what happens to the people there.

    So please take your visiting bullshit sportsmanship and all your stupid crap someplace else because I have news for you, we don’t buy your bullshit here.

    Piece of advice for you, next time to travel to Cuba, leave the Canadian Dollars at home and ask to live like a regular Cuban lives everyday for some time, I’ll guarantee you that you won’t be talking so much nonsense as you’re doing here.

    It totally pisses me off to see idiots like you that go to travel to Cuba and live the good life as tourists while totally ignoring the cruel everyday reality that goes on for the people that live in the island (a reality that you would not tolerate to live under in your own country of Canada) and then have the fucking balls to come to blogs like this (and to us that we know the Cuban reality, because we suffered in our own skins) and lecture us with your imbecilic, stupid views.

  19. Freedom for Cuba:

    Please do not pass judgment on those you do not know.
    I have spent several months living in Cuba as a “guajiro en el campo”, so to speak.
    I did not have the luxuries which other tourists take for granted in 5 star resorts.
    I lined up in a colita with a Libreta in my hand to purchase a loaf of bread and a half dozen eggs. I solicited neighbors who sold me a chicken for our next meal. I had to cut down firewood in order to cook that meal. So you are completely wrong to assume that I went to Cuba to live the good life as you claimed.
    So I think the only “bullshit” here is the stuff coming from you !

  20. I still have very clear memories of purchasing a pound of rice with my Libreta. After coming home and sifting through that rice and removing about 3 ounces of piedra and tierra, I had very little rice left for all of us to eat.
    I know first hand how you have suffered there. I know first hand how I have suffered there. I can understand why are bitter, but you are directing your frustrations at the wrong person my friend.

  21. To the Canadian rude jerk:

    You state:
    I am free to travel to Cuba as often as I wish.

    My response:
    Are Cubans free to travel as they wish?

    It seems to me, Jerk, you only care about your own rights and Cubans are just quaint little zoo animals to go and visit. I got that about right, didn’t I?

  22. Davidb1:

    Don’t blame me for the travel retrcitions placed on Cuban on the island.
    As for your zoo fetish, have you tried counseling or therapy?

  23. Canadian obnoxious jerk states:
    And people wonder why the World hates obnoxious big mouth americans.

    Yet when the world is in trouble the world calls the “obnoxious big mouth americans.” You know what, you are an obnoxious big mouthed Canadian. How about that? We here don’t care for your tyranny sympathies.

  24. Buena Hoja,

    How did you get a libreta when you don’t live in Cuba as you claim you’re Canadian?

    Libretas are only allowed to the people that live there. This statement of yours sounds like bullshit to me, you need to provide evidence to back-up your claim.

    You only mention a “libreta” issue and the lack of food like that was the only issue that is wrong in Cuba. You don’t mention anything about any of the lack of freedoms and basic human rights that the people in Cuba experience on a daily basis.

    We are not bitter, we demand JUSTICE for the many human rights abuses that the Castro regime has committed on the people for the last 50 years.

    We demand JUSTICE for the many people in Cuba that have been executed in the firing squads, for the many people that rotted in jails without due process of the law, for the many people that died in these jails because of the inhuman treatment given by their jailers.

    We are not bitter, we demand JUSTICE on a regime that forced many of their citizens to get and a raft on the Florida traits and for the many that perished while on that journey. We demand JUSTICE for the many that have been executed on the high seas by Cuban Coast Guards while trying to escape the island.

    We demand JUSTICE on a regime that ignores the basic rights of human beings and tramples on these rights on a regular basis.

    Seeking JUSTICE in not bitterness at all, it’s the right thing to do.

    You can take your “libreta” experience and shove it “my friend”.

    My family did not come to America because we had to use a “libreta” in Cuba to eat.

    We came to America because we wanted to be free, period.

  25. One might consider that the world is in trouble because of obnoxious big mouth americans.

    ED: One might consider this, yes. But then one would be completely wrong and, moreover, one might be proving to the world just how completely idiotic some Canadians are.


  26. Admit it, you think Cubans on the island are zoo animals to go visit, right jerk? Heck you have the right to go to a zoo. Why not have the right to visit one of the world’s biggest zoo in Cuba. Right jerk?

  27. Buena Hoja,

    You are coming dangerously close to getting banned from commenting here.

    Let me just encapsulate this for you, since you have shown a very finite comprehension and complete misunderstanding of the subject matter.

    This post is not about baseball, if you want to read posts about baseball specifically, then I suggest you find a blog that focuses on baseball. If you want to read about Cuan baseball, then I suggest you find a blog – good luck with that – about cuban baseball from Cuba.

    This post is, essentially, about oppression. Specifically, the oppression as implemented and sustained by the castro regime and as exported by same to the USA via the WBC as clearly proven by Henry’s post. Cuban state security can tell any one, cuban, american or canuck what they can and cannot do, can and cannot say in Cuba. They cannot force an American to shut up on American soil. That is a violation of that American’s first amendment rights.

    I will add that just because you lived on the libreta for a few weeks in Cuba does not make you Cuban. Not even close. Please dont insult those of us that have lost family members to the regime in one way or another or who live with family in Cuba suffering the jackboot of fidel castro capricious oppression. And please, dont insult those cubans like Dr. Biscet or Antunez or the plethora of other political prisoners languishing in cells on the island by stating that you have even an ounce of understanding of what it is to be Cuban.

  28. Hey Davidb1:

    Were you once a zoo animal?
    What do you want to be when you grow up?
    A turista?

    Ed. Val: You have just been banned, asshole.

  29. Jerk Canadian asshole, next time the wold is in trouble the world can just call the Canadians. The Canadians can then send their fleet of 2 ships and 1 tank to defend the free world. That sounds like a good idea, right?

  30. Hey Val:

    I have no intentions whatsoever of offending you or anyone else on this blog.
    And you are right, a Cuban State Security agent can do as he pleases on his island.
    But in Petco Park, on American soil, he has no jurisdiction.
    However, Henry initiated a battery of verbal abuse toward the Cuban National Baseball Team for his own subjective personal satisfaction. And for that reason, he was perceived as a public nuisance which resulted in his ejection from the ball park.
    Politics or not, verbal abuse of any kind at a ball park during a game of this caliber will not be tolerated.

  31. Politics or not, verbal abuse of any kind at a ball park during a game of this caliber will not be tolerated.

    Are you a cop? BTW, Henry did cooperate fully with the police at the stadium. The more I think of this, the more I think you’re not who you say you are, Buena Hoja.

  32. I have no intentions whatsoever of offending you or anyone else on this blog.

    Bullshit. When you use the expression “loudmouth Americans” you are offending every writer and most of the readers of this blog. Don’t act like you didn’t start this.

    Secondly I didn’t verbally abuse a single member of the Cuban team. On the contrary I welcomed them to a free country. I told them about the success of their Cuban countrymen in the U.S. and I invited them to stay. The only person I heckled was Antonio Castro Soto del Valle, the son of fidel castro who lives like a prince in the Cuban monarchy. When the Cuban goon threatened me, I called his bluff and told him to come up if he had balls.

    And if you think verbal abuse is not tolerated at a ballpark then you’ve never been to a major league game. Figures. You’re a bush leaguer. Managers have stronger words for umpires than I had for the son of fidel castro.

    I’ve said worse to you in this thread than I said to the son of fidel castro. You say that we don’t know you and can’t judge you but you hypocritical son of bitch can judge me and pretend to know what I said without being there? Screw you.

  33. Val,

    You did right for banning that asshole of Buena Hoja.

    It was about time he got the boot as he displayed total insensitivity towards the Cuba issue regardless of the bullshit he gave about the “libreta” and the Cuban security agent.

    On one hand he tells you that he had no intention of offending anyone and on the other he goes and insults Davidb1.

    Is amazing to see how some stupid people show their true colors.

  34. One last post from me on this issue,

    Buena Hoja you are another candidate for the major kick in the ass.

    In your case I would not subject you to a major anal surgery to remove the boot thought.

    I rather leave the boot deep inside your rear-end, as I have a feeling that you’ll like it.

  35. Val, Henry, FreedomForCuba, others.
    I agree full-heartedly with everything you have said. However, I’m not sure that Buena Hoja’s comments merit banishment from Babalu. I do not presume to tell you what to do you on your blog Henry and Val – but let’s not become guilty of committing the same crimes for which we accuse the Castro regime: silencing dissident opinions.

    I think Buena Hoja is incredibly naive and he was at times pompous and arrogant. He never cursed, he never attacked anyone specifically, and I think any insults he did make we can all handle as grownups. If nothing else, we get to refine our arguing skills?

    Once again, not presuming to tell you what to do. It might be useful to have a few village idiots running around though, no?

  36. but let’s not become guilty of committing the same crimes for which we accuse the Castro regime: silencing dissident opinions.

    Excuse my french but that’s bullshit. This is a blog not a government. A blog is like a house and a house has rules. You wouldn’t take kindly to a stranger coming to your party and calling you or your guests ugly.

    Buena hoja has the right to say whatever he wants, he just can’t say it here. Why? Because this isn’t his space. It’s ours. We pay for it, we take care of it, it’s ours.

    We have conspicuously posted our comments policies. He violated them. Period.

  37. Fair enough – though I’m not debating your right to ban him. He probably had it coming.

    I’m just saying, might it not be useful to have someone like him around? I really enjoyed reading yours and other comments in response to his “claims.” Even if he was a jerk and disrespectful in your house, he sparked a 40+ comment thread that was pretty interesting to read. If you let idiots like him continue posting, it gives us the opportunity to engage in interesting arguments.

  38. The problem is that I can’t dedicate my life to refuting nonsense I can’t allow stuff like that to go unchallenged on our blog. It’s easy for you to say I should do this or do that but if you put your heart and soul into something only to have people shit on it you’d understand where I’m coming from. You’re asking me to allow the jerk who crashed the party to stay because you think the fights he picks are entertaining.

  39. Daniel,

    I fully agree with Henry, as Babalu is a free island on the net without a bearded bastard.

    There are enough apologists up there for the Castro regime, we don’t need them here and believe me we won’t sway any of them (as they could care less) and all we’ll do by allowing them here is to waste blog space.

    In this battle of ideas we are only going bring to our side on this blog the honestly, decent, God fearing and caring people that are still left in this world that naively bought the MSM line regarding the Castro regime. When confronted with the true reality of the Castro regime as is portrayed on this blog and others these types of people will reject the MSM bullshit and come to our side.

    Unfortunately there are many other idiots up there that are beyond help (Hoja Buena happens to be one of them) and we shouldn’t waste our precious time with their bullshit, nonsense arguments.

    Hoja Buena overstayed his welcome at Babalu by insulting Davidb1 after he told Val that he did not meant to offend anyone (please read the previous posts). And the way that he insulted Davidb1 was a stab at all of us that had the misfortune of living in Cuba under the Castro regime for a period of our lives.

    Hoja Buena also claimed that he was in Cuba living with regular people and that he had a “libreta” assigned to him when we know very well that is a false claim as only Cubans living in the islands have a “libreta”.

    I suspect that Hoja Buena went to live with some people in Cuba for a short while and he helped them with his Canadian Dollars because if you search the web you find that many Cubans today rent their homes are hostels to foreigners in order to get access to foreign currency.

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