Bravery and Bravado (II and Final)
“…When Juanes talked about the political prisoners, morally, the opposition should have lifted the banner and raised its voice for Freedom for our brothers unjustily imprisoned. There was no action because the opposition is inoperative. The cell phones, laptops, printers, the support they receive from outside, none of it serves any purpose. They could not coordinate even the smallest gesture to attract the notice of the international press covering the event in the Plaza…”
The preceding is the opinion of a reader who left a comment on one of my blogs. He earnestly asked me to write about it, so now I will.
While I do this, I want to make it clear to the people who think as he does — those of us who live in Cuba and publically dissent are no one’s puppets.
If you wish for action and violence, come and be the protagonists.
If TV in Miami bores you, go to Little Havana and make the news of the day.
If you want blood and confrontation in Cuban streets, come and spill your own blood.
If you want a human heart on a sacrificial altar, come and decapitate an executioner with your own hands.
I am an attorney, independent journalist, blogger and housewife. Tasks that I responsibly and peacefully assume. I do not and will not do anything to satisfy frustrations and foreign anxieties.
If the would-be help offered to the dissident movement inside of Cuba — who in reality are the ones who are at risk in all of this — is on condition that we “take to the streets,” then stop sending the help right now.
It is true, actual Cuban youth do not have the drive of Venezuelan youth who combat Hugo Chávez. But, in the case of those who criticize us — while they lived here — did they manage to bring people together and get them out of their houses carrying sticks and stones or even simple pots and pans?
A little while ago I watched the indifferent looks of passers-by as an opposition group protested in public. No one ever joins these protests — people look on as though the demonstrators are crazy or criminal. These passers-by are the Cuban people of whom we should first demand a conscience. Because it is their reaction that is representative of the vast majority of the population.
Think as you may, go so far as to say that I am an unpatriotic, cowardly woman. Who said I am not afraid? Afraid not so much of the harm they can do to me personally, but what they can do to my family. No one could ever compensate me for that.
I don’t think I should test my bravery, and I don’t aspire to becoming a heroine of the opposition or of independent journalism. Doing what I do, I complete my obligation as a citizen. But the fact that I am a mother makes me think about all of the consequences of my actions.
So, to those who endeavor that others achieve the goal that they did not have the courage to attain, I beg you: enough with incitements and comparisons!
From the outside you see things differently — in other colors. Above all when you live without political prisoners or repression. We have enough with the manipulation of the government without also having to deal with the manipulation of Cubans who decided to throw in the towel and leave.
I want to tell you loudly and clearly: Cuba does not need more political prisoners. Or martyrs. We can attain liberty, democracy and national reconciliation by peaceful and rational means. As did the Chileans, the Germans and the South Africans.
Photo: Dr. Oscar Elías Biscet, with his wife Elsa Morejón, before being sentenced to 25 years in prison, in April 2003. Dr. Biscet believes in nonviolent action, as proclaimed by Mahatma Gandhi.
Translated in part by: Hank