International solidarity with Reina Luisa Tamayo


That is one of the posters held high in the heart of Hollywood this afternoon, as we stood in solidarity with Reina Luisa Tamayo, the mother of murdered Cuban political prisoner Orlando Zapata Tamayo. (More photos here)

Ours was one among a series of international events.  There were marches/demonstations in Miami, New Jersey, Raleigh, Madrid, Paris, Milan, Santiago de Chile, and Buenos Aires.  Marc spoke at the Tampa event, and his words  perfectly capture why so many of us are inspired by this remarkable women.  


Cuban women with their love and their courage, have always been the strength of our families, and of our nation. They have been our rock, our guiding light. No man who is the father, son, husband or brother of a Cuban woman should ever doubt this.

And after the events of the past 6 ½ months, since the death of Orlando Zapata Tamayo on Feb. 23, not even scoundrels like Fidel and Raúl Castro and the prison guards and secret policemen and common thugs who do their bidding, should have any question about this, as well.

For that, we can thank Reina Luisa Tamayo.

Despite the murder of her son by the Castro regime, despite her mourning, despite the dictatorship subsequently targeting her as some sort of public enemy, this woman has emerged as a new leader of the struggle for freedom for our Cuba.

With a grace and courage and dignity that Cuban men might recognize in their mothers and grandmothers, sisters and wives, Reina Luisa Tamayo has assumed her son’s mantle, and built on his legacy, to become a leader we need for the ongoing struggle.

This morning, she will brave possible threats from Cuban police and others and again march from her home to her church. Those of us gathered here and around the world this morning should feel honored to join her in her journey.