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July 29, 2021
Cuban artists and intellectuals continue to express their support for the Revolution and reaffirm their rejection of continuous aggression against Cuba promoted, organized and financed by the United States government.
In his blog Segunda cita, the singer-songwriter Silvio Rodríguez, noted: “Regarding police excesses… I received some images of the demonstration in front of the Capitol moving toward the Malecón. It is a panoramic shot taken from a balcony of the Hotel Inglaterra. You can see police marching along the flanks of the demonstration, but there is no physical aggression on either side. I have the impression that much of what we have seen has been edited very precisely, to show what they wanted to highlight.”
Regarding the unconventional war that the nation is experiencing today, Camagüeyan poet Alejandro González Bermúdez, told Granma: “Social networks have become, in the case of Cuba, a manipulated and meticulously programmed platform to stimulate or discourage, as desired. The origin of this manipulation is obvious. At the same time, the Cuban government reiterates its commitment to dialogue, peace and consensus…”
Mercy Ruiz, winner of the National Award for Editing, expressed her “indignation with this new war for which Cubans must be prepared and defend the Revolution with all weapons, non-conventional and conventional,” and emphasized, “At this moment we must have firm convictions. The people must be systematically informed. This allows us to have weapons we need to fight. Young people need more historical education, to be aware of the background of relations between Cuba and the United States, so they understand that Homeland or Death is not a slogan, but a conscious, firm way of living.”
“The period we are living today in Cuba and beyond, is not one of slogans, but of convictions,” insisted Ulises Mora, founder of the Timbalaye rumba project. “These are moments in which we must together contribute to create solutions based on our experience and protect our conquests, in order to live together in an inclusive environment of broad social participation. We know and are fully aware of the consequences of the inhuman blockade imposed by the United States and its constant persecution. Despite this, we were able to develop vaccines against covid-19, making tangible the most evident form of the human essence. This is one more reason to reaffirm our conviction to defend Cuba from any corner of the world. No one has said that our revolutionary work is perfect, we all know that there is much to be done and to rectify, but only in an atmosphere of peace, fraternity and love among all Cubans will we advance, with and without a blockade. Cuba is the result of our struggle for independence, our hope for a better world, and the dignity of a people that will not give in to imperialist pressure, not even the most ruthless and inhuman of its aggressions.”
The first thing the Revolution did was to teach the people to read, so we could think. And thinking means reflecting on the world around us, as well as contributing to improving it through creative suggestions and constructive criticism, in order to correct mistakes. Long before social networks, Cubans were a very opinionated people. We have our own points of view about everything: sports, movies, medicine, politics…..
“Hot corners” are where baseball is discussed, plays and decisions challenged, which says as much about the exercise of expressing an opinion as attending a neighborhood government accountability assembly.
In these block meetings of residents in every Cuban community emit their evaluation of the human and the divine: from the hole in the middle of the street to the bread baked yesterday that did not weigh was what it was supposed to. These assemblies, mechanisms of democratic expression unparalleled in the world, have trained Cubans in the art of defending their judgments with arguments, valid or not, but expressed with civility and decency.
It is also the norm in matters of such broad interest as the debates on Constitutional questions, policy guidelines and other issues of significant social importance, in which the people have been summoned to establish consensus in a collective manner. Such was the debate on the draft Constitution, held from August 13 to November 15, 2018.
Aware that their assessment mattered and counted, our people understood that they were participating in establishing the legal, economic, political and social order that would govern society through a Magna Carta that would later be approved by 86.85% of the votes, with over 90% of eligible voters participating, that is, the majority of the population.
Defending an opinion is not alien to Cuban social praxis; but that was not what the July 11 disturbances were about.
Legitimate protest will never entail committing crimes, theft, violence, attacks, vandalism. There is no civility possible when one takes such action to create chaos, ignoring all social responsibility.
Those who smashed store windows and stole products, not even food, are vandals, in reality criminals. Those who assume such deplorable attitudes, those who think they are tough and attack the police, do not deserve respect.
Shaken by these events, to which we are not accustomed, we, good Cubans, who are the absolute majority, have already stated that, despite preferring to come to an understanding, will not allow anyone to violate our sacred public tranquility, a conquest and legacy of the Revolution.
There will be no room for such aggression, no chance that a handful of mercenaries can impose an agenda of lies and violence.
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