Sunday, April 24, 2011

My Wish for Cuban Youth: Part 8

This post marks the eighth entry for the current Roots of Hope blog prompt: "My Wish for Cuban Youth."

By Miraisy Rodriguez

I’m not competing in a beauty pageant, so I won’t pretend to answer how we can bring peace to Cuba. All I’ll do is wish that in the 9 months left in 2011 Cuban youth will somehow learn, and thereby bring peace to themselves.

Learn what? Everything! I want young people in Manicaragua, Placetas, and other small towns, nowhere near la Habana, to know who Yoani Sanchez is. I want them to know that U.S. President Carter visited Cuba and spoke on behalf of Cuban spies rather than on their behalf. I want Cuban youth to know that it’s up to them to change that country.

It’s new for me to say “that” country, but for as many years as I’ve been saying “my” country, nothing has happened. The truth is that as much as Cuba is a place I’m nostalgic for and will never stop being my place of birth, I consider myself lucky to have been taken from there by my parents. Yes, it’s important for me to stay abreast of the situation on the ground there, and teach all my friends and colleagues here about it, but what good is that if youth on the ground are clueless? It pains me to speak to the cousins I still have living in Cuba, or those recently arrived, and realize that they know very little about what’s actually going on in their world. It pains me to see some truth to the statements made in the film “The Grandchildren of the Revolution,” that people left in Cuba need to stay, that intelligently informed minds must stop fleeing if the country is to change.

It wasn’t an American-Egyptian that got people in Egypt riled up. All the legwork was done by Egyptians in Egypt. How they did it was a bit amazing, a bit scary, a bit mysterious, but a lot effective. Granted, most of the efforts, at least according to news sources here, took place in Cairo. Cuba, however, is not Egypt, la Habana is not Cairo, and I don’t live in Cuba.

So I wish that sometime soon some Cuban youth will realize that the fight for freedom must be well planned and that it must come at the oppressors from all sides. When that youth aligns with the Habana resistance leaders and the two start campaigning all over Cuba, the fight will have truly started. And then…I will “like” their Facebook page, I will re-post, re-tweet, Wordpress, and whatever else, all their efforts. I will be there for them! My wish is that they’ll soon give me somewhere to be.

Miraisy Rodriguez was born in Santa Clara, but raised in Miami. She is a second year law student who likes to blog on her free time and volunteers with the Miami Roots’ Network. Her personal blog may be found at

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