A democracy with no surnames and a national dialogue including all of us
Latin America is changing. The European Union is changing out of its borders and towards the others. The United States is changing inside and outside. People are expressing themselves and protesting. Governments are changing and alternating. The correlation of forces is changing and the world goes on. Cuba is in fashion. Certain chancellor has even spoken about “complicity” and “sweet” relations with the Cuban government. Finally, it seems that the Pope John Paul the II´s wish 18 years ago is about to be fulfilled: “May the world open up itself to Cuba and may Cuba open up itself to the world”. We are experiencing a seeming honeymoon with everything that comes from abroad.
But, beware, this wave will pass. The mercantile interests change very quickly from complicity to competition; from diplomacy sweetness to the salty taste of market. One can go easily from the exclusive glamour to the exclusive accounts to charge.
Meanwhile this wave passes, “Fast and Furious” is been filmed in Cuba, and 100 meters symbolically isolate the ordinary people with a fence, waiting to be extras in the film; another small part of the nation is waiting for a cruiser at a harbor in order to perform a pathetic and fake folklore with Cuban flags painted in their clothes, lacking spirituality and culture in their brains; nearby another group of citizens are waiting to watch, from a distance, another honeymoon between appearance and power located at a superficial “Prado” promenade which was fenced.
Some will say that these exclusions and differences exist all over the world. The difference lies in the rest of our daily life. Cuba is opening itself up to the world, but it continues being closed to its own children. It is not only closed to political opponents and ideological dissidents but to every “plural factor”, to independent workers, to entrepreneurs and to every person who disagrees or wants to be independent and to be the sovereign owner of his life and possessions; this right to disagree is used by persons in such cases.
This lack of openness is shown in an extensive article published by the Cuban Communist Party daily named Granma, on the 17th of May, 2016: “Those who want Cuba to kneel down repeat over and over: more democracy for Cuba, more participation of citizens, more access to information, more liberties. And facing their dense noses and myopic view I ask them ¿what capitalist country has more of that than Cuba?”
With all due respect for the expressed opinion, we cannot coincide with the fact that to want more liberties, more access to information, more participation of citizens and more democracy means “to want Cuba to kneel down”. There is a great amount of Cubans here and all over the world, who don’t want Cuba to kneel down. What these Cubans want for all Cuba´s children is democracy, participation, access to information, and liberties for which José Martí lived and fought, “with all of us and for the sake of everybody”.
Discredit divides and inflames the moods, and Cuba needs unity in diversity and social coexistence without hatred.
To consider an ideology or an economic system to be the only and non-negotiable ones means to exclude and destine one part, whatever it may be, to life as pariahs, on the verge of society; and that´s not the spirit and the feeling of the Cuban nation.
We don´t want either to go back to the past, to a pseudo-Republic, to political maneuvering and to the practice of obtaining votes with promises of government posts. For a standing Cuba and to its sovereign citizens to change is not to go back. To change means to move forward, to grow in humanity, to grow in development and in civic coexistence.
The changing international scenario and the change in obsolete models make us think of summoning people, not excluding them; to coexist fraternally, not to identify terrorism, beating, violence and mercenarism with any intention to improve civic coexistence in its highest degree. Discredit is another way of violence. To manipulate the wills of the different ones means to be unfaithful to the truth trying to diminish the moral strength of the ones who honestly defend this truth.
All of us, Cubans, women and men, should cultivate a respectful, objective and cordial language always and in all the Media. Poisoning the environment in times of renovation does not help the nation which is not an ideology or an economic mechanism. Even the slow reforms proposed by the Cuban government, accepting what used to be excluded and condemned, are an irrefutable evidence that we can “change everything that should be changed” without danger to the Nation, the culture and the soul of one people. Dialectics is part of life, economy and politics. To change is to guaranty life. Not to change is to guaranty death. To love Cuba is to know how to change; and to know how to change is to learn how to find the less traumatic and more inclusive way outs using public debate and civilized and respectful dialogue including all of us. To promote fear of a nonexistent boogieman does not help to peacefully identify the real boogiemen.
But dialectics and debate are not enough; dialogic and proposal are necessary too. Every country needs to create and promote the mechanisms and above all, a respectful environment and language, so that all citizens are able to hold talks in peace, to propose things without prejudices and agree about beneficial solutions for the nation. It should be done without a priori exclusions and rude discredit. Cuba played host to Colombia dialogues for peace. This is an exercise and an example of how the children of one same people should treat themselves, even if some of them used violence and weapons and now they get together in order to hold talks to find a paths of peace, progress and inclusion.
To create a spirit of harmony, a moderate language and a respectful debate is always not only a political choice but also a citizens´ duty, especially in this historical moment. That´s the way we think and we promote it.
In this momentous situation, Cuba needs, more than ever, a national dialogue including all of us and a democracy without exclusive surnames.
We are sure that Cuba will make it with the agreement of good wills and a spirit of social coexistence.
Pinar del Río, 20th of May, 2016
On the 114th anniversary of our Independence