Good Ole Tio Sam

The following a conversation I overheard yesterday morning while standing in line at the cash register, waiting to pay for a frozen pack of tilapias and a pack of Hawaiian rolls Mom had asked me to get from her local Winn Dixie. The woman was Cuban, somewhere in her thirties, with a six or seven year old boy and chatting on her cell phone:

“I can’t go this year…”

“No. I have to wait until next year…”

“In August. Next August. For two weeks….”

“No. We’re flying directly…”

“Yes. Directly…”

“Havana. Jose Marti Airport. Yes.”

“No. No way. We are going straight from the airport…”

“Yes. To Varadero. For two weeks. I cant wait…”

“No, mija. We are going to one of those all-inclusive resorts…”

“Yes, two weeks at an all inclusive resort. Yes, in Varadero…”

“No. We’re not even telling the family until we’re ready to leave the resort…”

“Yes. Because then they wont let us enjoy our vacation…”

“You know how it is. We want to go Varadero y pasarla bien. Have a good time. That’s why we’re going to an all inclusive resort…”

“That’s right. Because you dont even have to leave the place…”

“And they have everything there at the resort. We won’t have to spend our vacation time standing in line or dealing with the black market…”

“I know! Two weeks next August! We can’t wait! I have to let you go now, i have to pay.”

The woman hung up her cell phone and gave me a half-hearted, apologetic smile. She tossed her phone into her purse and rummaged through it looking for her pocketbook.

Now, I know you all are thinking I must have been about ready to blow a gasket – and I was a bit teed off – but I was much more disappointed than anything else. The real anger came later.

The woman pulled out her pocket book and asked the cashier how much it was. “$87.52,” the cashier responds.

The woman opened her pocketbook, pulled out the plastic and paid for the groceries.

With an EBT card.

ebt card

25 thoughts on “Good Ole <i>Tio</i> Sam”

  1. Unfortunately the Independent, Sovereign Republic of Hialeah is full with these types…

  2. Pure, unadulterated escoria!

    See it all the time when I go to Isla Canaria for a cafecito y croqueta. The recien llegados never fail to amaze me.

    Makes me feel ashamed to be Cuban.

    Moreover, I do not fight for such Cubans, nor do I consider them slaves. Time and time again, they spit on my efforts with their lack of morality. After all, they are the direct product of Fidelito’s Revolucion.

  3. The product of Fidel Castro Robolution are beyond help but they are accomplices, culprits, slaves and victims (all at the same time) of growing-up in Fidel Castro’s Cuba.

    I fully understand your pain and frustration (as I experience it myself). I would send all these characters back to Cuba in an instant.

    I don’t feel ashamed to be Cuban, but I understand your pain of having to witness how much the people in the island have lost their principles as a direct result of 51 years of Communist indoctrination.

    Fidel Castro set out to destroy the soul of the people in the island and he has effectively succeeded on that evil master plan (with few exceptions of course).

    Still I’m proud to be of Cuban ancestry and long for the day that the island I was born is free because from that point on we can start rebuilding the enormous damage that Fidel Castro has caused on the people.

    I’m sure that is it going to take generations and maybe we won’t live to see Cuba going to back to a resemblance of what once was in our lifetime but, I’m unwilling to give-up on the cause.

  4. I will never ask you to give up on the cause, just understand the harm that your victims (slaves) can and will do to you. Such sympathy for such individuals will prove you fruitless. In time, you will see this, if you have yet to see. The greatest trick Fidel ever pulled was to have the exile community hate and blame him – mostly him – for everything that has happened to them.

  5. You hear them on the phone at the Winn Dixie line, and I get to see them in action in line to board their flights at MIA.

    It’s indefensible.

  6. CDonate,

    Trust me, I know how these new arrivals are.

    Got some in my family that have shown their true colors shortly after arrival.

    Cambiados por mierda se pierde el cartucho…

  7. Well, not all “products of the Robolution” are like that. I am not, nor are my friends who are around my age and came around the same time I did or after. Condemn her and her ilk, but don’t toss us all up in the same heap. They are trash (and trust me, they are also a lot) but not all of us are.

  8. Aqui lo que importa es el VOTE!!! I have called our Cuban American Congressmen/women many, many times asking for the end of the Cuban Adjustment Act. It’s never going to happen.

  9. I challenge each an every one of you – I say that more important than fighting day in and day out over the embargo is to focus efforts on the CAA. The embargo isn’t going anywhere. No way they get 60 votes. The CAA must go. This will really put the screws on Fidel. If the only option left to most of the Cubans that want to get out is change at home, then just maybe they do something about it.

  10. -“…their lack of morality. After all, they are the direct product of Fidelito’s Revolucion.”

    and we wonder why they don’t rise up and revolt over there after half a century of living under the slave master. Just a few brave souls trying to fight for the freedom of the majority (without even their support). Those under 50 in Cuba have no sense of what they missed. The heroic souls who fought in Giron, the underground, and Escambray knew exactly what the had lost – the great majority of these current folks evidently dont want to fight (nor appreciate) for what they never had.

  11. “Cuba es un país que produce canallas, delincuentes, demagogos y cobardes en relación desproporcionada a su población.” Reinaldo Arenas.

    And Arenas was commenting on his travails in Cuba itself, during the 60’s 70’s.

  12. When we cross a scumbag like that one, just think of men like Orlando Zapata, Antunez, Ariel Sigler (I hope he gets a hero’s true welcome tomorrow)and so many others that after being born and grown under that regime they are still men of honor! Yes, there is hope for Cuba yet, let’s not forget that. We “el exilio” will light the way.

  13. I love the comments. It sheds much light on the recent discourse Alberto and I have had. I say, let history and empirical evidence speak for itself.

    Thank you Val for the post.

    Tonight I will sleep well as I think of the intrepid minority and pray for them against the tyranny of evil; and dream of when the exiles return and the hope that we will bring with us, as we will surely be carrying the light.

  14. This is pretty disgusting territory, all right. Unfortunately, this is not an isolated case. The food stamps bit, of course, is primarily the responsibility of the issuing authority. If abuse of the system is possible, said abuse will happen, guaranteed. The Cuba-as-fun-resort mentality is deeply repugnant, particularly in a Cuban, but like Zoe Valdes likes to say, “eso es lo que trajo el barco” (that’s what the ship brought in). The fact is that one cannot be born into, grow up in and be shaped by a profoundly abnormal, highly pathological society like Castro’s Cuba without being adversely affected by it, though the severity of the damage varies. Once the damage is done, simply putting the person in a different setting is not going to undo or erase years of toxic exposure. This is an extremely serious problem, particularly for those who are still on the island and have never known any other world or way of life. It’s not just a matter of setting them free from a totalitarian regime. That’s only the beginning. There’s an AWFUL lot of shit to be worked through and overcome, assuming that’s actually feasible.

  15. When someone has been in a cult for 30 years … it can take decades to deprogram them … a similar process will be needed for nearly all Cubans when the Castro’s die. It might take a generation to weed it out unfortunately. Cuba might be the Cuba of old by 2050 if we are lucky.

  16. I read that it is hard to build something lasting and easy to destroy. In my eternal optimism I think that castro’s 50 years of evil can and will be destroyed quickly when the time comes. What may take longer will be the building of a shining beautiful example for the the world to admire which will be the Cuba, my cuba, of the not too distant future. I see the future Cuba without socialism and communism and fascism. I see Cuba shining and healthy and friendly. It may take some time, but, our day will come.

  17. Cuba’s day may come, and should come, but I doubt it will be in our lifetime, even if Castro, Inc. falls very soon. It’s not just that absolutely everything is screwed up or ruined on the island, but that the human element now there, which is largely the product of that hideous system, cannot simply be “reformed” by changing the government. The first problem will be the widespread denial that there is a problem, a serious problem, at the human level. Few if any will want to admit they’re malformed or deformed, even if that wasn’t their fault. An awful lot of people will want immediate gratification of all their pent-up and frustrated desires, especially material ones, as if they were entitled to that without having to work, wait and pay for it. There’s no free lunch, but a lot of people will still want that. And as for exiles guiding and directing, don’t be too optimistic about that. The people who never left the island will be happy to accept the exile’s money or material input, but they will resent and resist anything else as an intrusion or imposition, and I expect it could get ugly (and attempts to recover confiscated or expropriated possessions by exiles could get very ugly).

  18. Do you people see my logic now? These marañeros, who take advantage of the system yet have just arrived a few years ago, and are living better than you or me all because everything they do is “under the table” should have their visas taken away upon travelling back to the island, and should be deported upon returning. Same goes to all American citizens (Private & public) who travel to Cuba. I can’t wait for Rick Scott to win the election and pass the Arizona-style illegal immigration law.

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