Monday, December 19, 2005

They got prostitutes but no Santa!!

While Cuba has lots of jineteras they defiantly don't have much of a Christmas spirit. The communist island, which outlawed Christmas in 1969 in order to get people to work through Castro's attempt of a record sugar harvest, began celebrating the holy holiday in 1997 as a good will gesture to Pope John Paul II.

But till this day Christmas decorations are as rare as full noche buena dinner. Many Cubans don't know or understand the holiday on the atheist island.

Read this article "Santa blacklisted in Cuba, no Xmas spirit" for more information...

Yes Virginia Jineteras Do Exist in Cuba!!!

Usually I try to write something new each post, unless it's an ongoing story. I have never responded to a comment on a post, until today!!

My last post I talked about UNICEF, sexual tourism in Cuba and child prostitution on the island..... One of the comments to my post stated that what I was saying was "absurd" The comment, written by Leftside, said that HE found no trace of prostitution in Cuba and that in fact the Cuban government crack's down on prostitution. ..... I want to know what Cuba did he go to????

While I don't doubt the Cuban government "tries" to give the impression they would never let children or adults prostitute themselves for some dollars, the reality is it happens every day. I can give you dozens of reports, articles and first hand accounts about such event that occurred in Cuba. (see below)

Yet my friend, Leftside, you say that I have no bases for my claims and from your personal experience on the socialist island that clearly I am a liar. As you said "I did not see ANY action when I was there last year."..... So what!!

Just because you claim that you didn''t see prostitutes in Cuba, it doesn't mean they don't exist? I don't see drugs or prostitutes in my daily life living in Washington D.C., but I do know they exist. So what you didn't see an overwhelming proof of sex rings in Cuba, but now you can read more about it and realize there are Jineteras in Cuba.

Or maybe you didn't see it because you are one of those idealist about Castro's Revolution. Here's the reality about the "great revolution" - IT FAILED!! Castro and Che's baloney propaganda failed miserably not only because it was a farce of an idea that could never actually take form in real life, but because their great plan was all about their own personal power and not the well being of the Cuban people.

In addition, though Castro can give the good talk at his old age, he would NEVER shut down an industry providing him moneEspeciallylly SOOOO much money. If you haven't noticed this communist/socialist/ believer in equality lives in a palace and is considered one of the worldrichestest men while millions of his people die and suffer.

Defending the Cuban government will get you no where here. And your claim that I "blame the problem exclusively on foreign tourists"... WELL DUH!!!! Tourist are the ones with the money!

The average Cuban on the island sometimes doesn't have enough to buy food, he usually isn't looking for prostitutes or jineteras.... and as far as the drugs comment, just because drugs are not a huge part of the prostitution circles in Cuba (which I am not sure if they are or if they are not... anyone want to help me on that one??) but that alone does not take away the fact that children are being abused on that island. I know that prostitution in Cuba is different that what we picture prostitution to be in the states, but again, it does not take away the raw in-humanity of the act and the desperation of the people doing such things as selling their bodies for money so they can feed their families.

The ECPAT Network - End Child Prostitution in Asian Tourism - is a group of international organizations to end child prostitution and pornography all over the world published a study, "Child Prostitution and Sex Tourism: Cuba." It said that "In Cuba, the link between tourism and prostitution is perhaps more direct than in any other country that hosts sex tourists." ECPAT also said a higher ratio of tourists are drawn to Cuba for prostitution rather than for the beaches, the shopping or the cultural experience more than to any other country in the world.

It also said "With mass tourism came large-scale effective demand for prostitution. Since many Cuban people are currently experiencing enormous economic hardship, it is not surprising that a supply of prostitutes has emerged to meet this demand." (link below)

Even from the floor of the House of Representatives Members of Congress from both sides have commented about Cuba's child prostitution rings, thier market for sexual tourism and how the abuse the children of Cuba. Look it up in the House Congressional Record.

I can pick apart your argument word by word, but I figured i might left others post thier comments as well.

And for your reading pleasure:
(note, some of the pages have graphic pictures, please be carefull)

- (Great report from the John Hopkins University. Go to Human Right Reports and then go to Americas and click on Cuba, President Bush has cited this report when talking about human trafficking in Cuba and prostitution.




- (Factbook on Global Sexual Exploitation- Cuba)

- (Cuba: The Thailand of the Americas)

- (Getting to Know Cuba guide)

- (Poverty Pushes Cuban Women into Sex Tourism)

I hope these are helpful. I don't doubt that you will comment on some problem with them. But they are the truth.

On more thing, I don''t know how the left always has a way to champion the cause of despicable things. You will defend Castro and his revolution, and the right of people to be self determined individuals, speaking their mind, but you won't admit to Human Right Violations in Cuba or the fact that thousands are rotting in Cuban jails. Boggles my mind, I guess that is why I'm a Republican.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Sometimes you got to laugh so you don't cry!

As part of my daily routine, I browse through the Cuba news via goggle. The first 15 post or so are about the baseball situation that has been very well covered by Babalu (great job by the way!) and then I hit this title: "UNICEF Praises Cuba's Child Protection Policy."

Clearly I clicked on it to see what information was the being presented as news. The poster, the Cuban government via AIN, of course provided "their version" of the truth (special emphasis on THEIR VERSION. But sometimes you got to laugh to keep your self from crying.

Cuba is a source country for children trafficked internally for the purposes of sexual exploitation and forced child labor.

The AIN article cites that UNICEF has recognized Cuba for "the excellent protection of children by the Cuban government." .. The article also says that Cuba protects it's children against any type of violence and suffer maltreatment and exploitation.

This is appalling! Cuba is the same government that has one of the LARGEST ring of Child prostitution in the world. It constantly abuses the youth in Cuba for sexual reasons, promoting tourism through sexual tourism, and has a huge market for human trafficking, all with a focus on children.

The article states "there are no 'invisible" or excluded children, despite being located in Latin America -a region where the abysmal gap between rich and poor keeps on growing. " Of course there are no "invisible" children in Cuba! The socialist island makes sure to count each and every one of its slave (umm... I mean citizens). These children work in the fields, promote his propaganda and are part of circle of abuse, which tries to break their spirit and tries to pull families apart.

Cuban children are forced to work in the agriculture industry of the country for months at a time with no parent supervision, separated from the families starting around the age of 11 - 13.

It's amazing to me, and to many Cubans, that UNICEF praises a country that so clearly abuses of its most precious resources, its children.

We all hope one day the realities of Cuba will come to light to the entire world community.

Viva Cuba Libre!!

Thursday, December 15, 2005

When do you know you’re a BIT too paranoid???

I have been involved in the Cuban fight for freedom even before I was born. When my mother was pregnant with me, as a good patriota, she still went to meetings, protests and even organized a few rallies.

I guess the same way that some fathers make their pregnant wives watch football so their babies will love the sport, my mom’s activism subconsciously made her American born baby a super Cuban, with the same fervor as the winning quarter back in a Super Bowl game.

Some of my first childhood memories are comprised of me reciting long poems of Jose Marti to random crowds of people while handing out white roses, asking strangers to sign petitions to denounce Cuba’s Human Rights violations and of course participating in pageants for “Los Municipios de Cuba en el Exilio” (the municipalities of Cuba in Exile festival) . Even in college I helped organize student protests agsinst the Clinton administration because of Elian and another against Jose Serrano. So yeah I’ve been doing this for a while.

A dark reality for all Cuban-American activists is the existence of Cuban spies. Yes they do exists! and no I am not being overly paranoid (ok, maybe a little, but I will get to that) … and Yes they are everywhere. I have met some, heard of many, one even tried to brain wash me…. clearly he didn’t prevail; I saw what he was doing…. LOSER!!!

Even in Washington D.C. during my latest work for “La Causa,” I was taken aside and told about the presence of Cuban spies in DC and how they target people like me!!. Ahh!!! Clearly I have become a super paranoid person, to an existent that recently on a business trip to New York City I let my paranoia get the best of me.

On my only free day in New York City this fall I was just walking around the city. I realized there was a Hispanic parade and quickly got enthralled in the pageantry. Everyone had their national flags, so I went up to the nearest vendor and asked for “mi banderita Cubana.”

As I happily waved and saluted to the few Cuban floats, towards the end of the parade a guy comes up to me and starts asking me about Cuban floats in the parade. He then starts asking about Cuba. He keeps asking me questions. He is Cuban, my paranoia got the best of me. I quickly assumed he might be a spy. I asked him questions, trying to measure him up. I even ask him if he is a spy!!!!

How paranoid does our activism make us (ok me) and we (I) assume that some people we (I) meet might be spies!!!

I know they exists. I know where they might hang out (members of the Cuban government hang out at Havana Village in Adams Morgan - I don’t go there—and it also has a huge Che poster that makes me sick to my stomach). But I also know that I have to chill out, be cautious but chill out.

Thankfully the guy has a sense of humor and we laughed it out. That is after the poor guy spent 20 minutes trying to convince me he wasn’t a spy, showing me every piece of identification he had and telling me a short bio of his life. He was just a nice guy interested in me. …

I finally believed him….. Why not, he was a nice guy Cuban boy… Well, I really believed him after I made a few calls, just in case for peace of mind…. You know…..

Viva Cuba Libre!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Get Them Out Of Here!!

So what the freak crawled up representative Tancredo #&^$*. Why does he want to pick up and ship out every person of Hispanic/Latin/Tejano (insert whatever politically correct term feels best to you) decent.

Unless you've been living in some cave (umm like me these days) you probably know the U.S. House of representatives is taking up immigration reform this week. Their is a bill by Rep. Sensenbrenner and Rep. King, Border and Immigration Enforcement Act of 2005, that address border security and internal enforcement but has no program to deal with the undocumented immigrants currently living in this nation. Unlike the President's proposal, the House bill focuses more on enforcement and less on dealing with the WHOLE problem.

representative Tancredo is a xenophobia out west who for the last few years has been advocating a "let's close the border and ship them all back where they came from" policy. Funny thing is, his grandfather immigrated here from Italy. Tancredo wants to even stop giving out HI visas, even for highly skilled, and high tech workers until the problems with immigration is resolved. In Tancredo's eyes, that is when we have a land of only light skinned English only speaking European descendents.

These days I feel that my black hair and brown eyes and slight Miami accent will force me start carrying a passport just in case Tancredo and his 80 something goonies move the nation in their direction.

If you think that as a Cuban you won't be effected. Think again. To many of these people all people from Spanish speaking countries are "Mexicans" they make no distinction and assume all of us are illegally here. Some of us maybe a bit more light skinned and have less of an accent but when you have the INS acting like a Gestapo all over Miami trying to deport people, let see how you feel about this.

The most disappointing thing is that I am a Republican!! For the last few months I have been fighting these policies. But the last few weeks it has been insane. Its like every freaking elephant lover in this city is about to use their passive feet to smash the other elephant into pieces.

Look I am all about securing our borders, stricter enforcement but does anyone truly realize what will happen to this nation if we send back every one of the 11 million undocumented immigrants in this nation, Mexican or OTM (what some love to call Other Then Mexicans).

Ay dios. The economy would crumble, hotels wouldn't get cleaned, fields won't be picked and half the people advocating immigrants return would be left with dirty houses and uncared for children.

Clearly Hispanics can do more, but as my grandparents needed some footing to move up, this current generation is doing the same. The reality is that some are just scared that these hard working Hispanics will have these menial jobs for the meantime and soon enough will take over the work place as we have done in so many other areas.

I'm Back

I'm BACK!!!

I am sorry that for almost two months I have been missing in action...

Much like a kid napped victim for the last few months I have been secluded to little whole in the wall, mainly my new office, as I started a new job with new people and not as much Cuba news as I once got.

But alas that has all changed. Here I go again delivering my version of Cuba news with a Washington twist... Well not always Cuba news but as a Cubanita I go for my passion, the mother land of Cuba, as Fransico Vicente Aguilera once said, "Sine patria no tengo nada!"

Viva Cuba Libre!!