We understand our fellow Cubans in the island are tired of slogans and empty rhetoric; thus, we humbly ask them to read this communication out:
Given the heterogenous nature of ACF there are different approaches to the president's trip to Cuba; however, the notion that his speech to the Cuban people was a brilliant piece of oratory is unanimous. President Obama outlined what America holds dear versus what the Cuban regime needs to survive, but does not necessarily imply the satisfaction of the ever increasing needs millions of people in the island and abroad.
No sooner had the echo of the first African American Commander in Chief words ceased to reverberate in our ears than we read rambling fallacies coming from some dark corner in Havana where among other inaccuracies and flat out falsities the regime claims credit for the elimination of racism.
Racial discrimination; dismissiveness regarding everything black, and the underestimation of the undeniable Afro Cuban contribution to the culture, the economy and the history of our native country is tenaciously entrenched in our social psychology, but there were always entities and associations through which we could seconvey our grievances. In 1959, the newly arrived elite unilaterally severed all links and closed all channels of communication with the excuse that racism had been, miraculously, eradicated and that all Cubans were equal at last. Nothing farther from the truth; the socio economic "experiment" inherited the structural and psychological characteristics of racism; whilst it officially claimed we were all equal it secretly and sometimes overtly made us pay for our lack of enthusiasm towards the Castro regime. It must be stated that the majority of the Afro descendants in the island were not politically active and those who showed any ideological inclination were divided in two main groups: the ones that followed Batista , more because of his role in the revolution of the sergeants than due to his "second coming" as a corrupt, thug harboring politician, and those who gathered around the Cuban Communist Party (PSP) that internationally was in absolute sync with Moscow, but domestically wore an aura of sponsor of arts and culture in general. The apocalyptic and blood oozing vision of Castro and his followers was never much of an appeal to Black Cubans.
As it was the case with all social causes in Cuba, the emerging new order embraced all just causes but addressed none; racism was eradicated by decree but no serious attempt was made to continue and strengthen the struggle and the philosophical stance of those who had championed the quest for racial integration when Castro came to power, on the contrary, some were summarily "persuaded" to leave the country and others were ostracized to the very verges of lunacy. Racism is so virulent in Cuba that the official narrative labels black dissidents and ideological opponents as ungrateful taking for granted that a darker skin makes people automatically loyal to their totalitarian brand of revolution.
One of the sordid practices of the Cuban government has been the use of blacks against blacks: black cops, mostly bussed from the east of the island and put to live in shanty shelters in Havana, are assigned the task of assiduously repressing and incarcerating black youths. The perfect example of this nefarious technique is the article written by a black journalist in which the jewel of the crown is the cheap sarcasm of asking our president: "Nigger, d'you think you're Swede?". To put it bluntly: black Cubans are human beings only if they follow the rules otherwise they must be reminded of their inherent second class linage.
But facts are facts and an African American US seating president told all Cubans the undeniable truth: the future is in our hands. The regime is the past that should have never been present and the present exists only if it manages to break away from the past. Those facts stand colossally in front of us and defy the absurdity of the tantrums of senile dictators sitting in thrones of straw weeping for their lost glory, the glory that never was, that one stolen from our hopes and our dignity as a nation.The glory that could be set upon us, at long last, if we manage not to miss our appointment with history once again, if the shameful gap between the handful of Cubans who have and the millions who have not, predominantly of African descent, is bridged and we swiftly take the helm and hold it steadily as we steer our ship to the promised land of genuine racial integration.