The Crisis in Cuba Has Nothing to Do With Your Political Agenda

by Sabine Waldeck
September 30th, 2021

Cuban citizens have been protesting against the shortage of food and medicine they have been experiencing since July 11th. The initial protest led to a growth of demonstrations across the country, other Cubans speaking out against their mistreatment.

While the lack of basic necessities has been an issue in Cuba for years, the pandemic only worsened the situation. During the pandemic, Cubans have been deprived of essential living supplies, ultimately facing a humanitarian crisis.

Many people following the crisis in Cuba have been emphasizing the economic embargo the United States has on the country.

The embargo is a layer as to why Cuba is experiencing shortages, it is not the reason. The main reason is the nature of their dictatorship.

Black Lives Matter faced a lot of backlash following their July 14 post pleading to the US government to lift the embargo it has on Cuba. The post stated “This cruel and inhumane policy, instituted with the explicit intention of destabilizing the country and undermining Cubans’ right to choose their own government, is at the heart of Cuba’s current crisis.”

Instagram users were not shy commenting how they felt about the post and how it was portraying the situation in Cuba.

Many called out the fact that the post was spreading misinformation. Commenters told Black Lives Matter that what was occurring in Cuba ran deeper than the embargo. They stressed that representing the embargo as Cuba’s sole issue for their supply crisis was misleading and damaging.

Cuban people have been living under some form of dictatorship since 1952. In the ‘50s, Fulgencio Batista ruled over Cuba after overthrowing their previous leader, Carlos Prío Socarrás. Fidel Castro then continued the theme and overthrew Batista seven years later.

Since then, the political system that Castro put in place has controlled Cuba for 62 years. This system has failed Cuba and while the cracks were showing for years, the foundation finally crumbled.

A lot of Cuba's problems can be faulted for the lack of economic reform. Unlike many other communist nations, Cuba did not adapt to a market economy, ignoring the advice of other countries within the communist party.

Due to the leadership, or lack thereof, Cuba is now facing food, medicine, and other shortages; many spectators blame this on the fact they are a communist country.

While this is true, a huge part of the issue is not properly taking care of their citizens for years due to the dictator-like style of their system, but that is not communism's fault. It is the failure of their government.

Blaming all of Cuba's issues on communism also misses a large part of the picture, much like blaming it all on the economic embargo.

The ignorance of finding sole fault within communism stems from individuals inserting their political views on the situation blinding them from reality.

Blaming all of Cuba’s issues on communism in order to push one’s political views misses the full picture of the regime Cuban’s have been run under for years. That message distracts from the fact that Cubans need aid and real change.

Cuban citizens do not need you using their situation to instill fear into other people. They do not need you using their lives to tell people in your country to stay away from communism. They do not need you picking and choosing what to understand in order to make your end of the spectrum look better.

They do need you to care, to talk, to advocate, and to understand.

Stop using human rights to push your political agenda.