Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Would You Visit A Cuban Beach?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Suppose that one day, you were on the beach in Varadero Beach, which is slightly EAST of Havana, Cuba, or in some other scenically tropical locale in that Caribbean island nation.

And on that day, suppose that it was a lovely sunny day, with pretty puffy white clouds floating around, the temperature was a balmy 82ºF, and a gentle breeze was blowing across the Gulf of Mexico onto the beach where you were located.

You’d probably say that it’d be an idyllic setting, for sure. Maybe even a picture perfect day on a lovely sandy-white beach!

Agree?

Now, suppose that you returned home and you said to your friends, “Wow! What a beautiful day it was on the beach in Cuba! It was a wonderfully lovely sunny day, clear skies, with a mild breeze, and 82ºF. It was absolutely PERFECT!”

And then… just as the words left your mouth, your friends started to call you a “communist sympathizer” simply because you told them how beautiful and perfect a day it was while you were on the beach in Cuba.

It’d be absurd, wouldn’t it?

And you’d think they were at least two bricks shy of a load – right?

In essence, that’s what some are doing to Bernie Sanders.

Simply because he (and Barack Obama before him) identified something good in a communist nation with a totalitarian government – which, by the way, Bernie has ALWAYS condemned his entire career – why should anyone make a false argument that by simply acknowledging the good, that somehow, he’s sympathetic to, or in agreement with the
government?

HE IS NOT!!

But good grief… ask yourself, if a poverty-stricken nation like Cuba can offer healthcare and education to their people, why can’t the United States – a SIGNIFICANTLY wealthier nation – do it?

It doesn’t make any sense, does it?

Again, the beaches are lovely.

Admiring the natural beauty of beaches on a lovely day has nothing to do with the government.

That Bernie Sanders acknowledged Cubans taught their people to read means nothing more than that Bernie acknowledged Cuba taught their people to read.

In an interview with Anderson Cooper, which appeared on CBS’ 60 Minutes television news investigation magazine recently, Sanders said in part that, “We’re very opposed to the authoritarian nature of Cuba. But you know… you got, it’s unfair to say ‘everything is bad’. You know, when Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing – even though Fidel Castro did it?”

Anderson Cooper: “There’s a lot of dissidents imprisoned in Cuba.”

Sanders: “That’s right! And we condemn that. Unlike Donald Trump, let’s be clear – you wanna’… I do not think that Kim Jong-Un is a good friend. I don’t trade love letters with a murdering dictator. Vladimir Putin… not a great friend of mine.” 

On March 16, 2016, then-President Obama visited Havana, Cuba, and delivered these remarks in part at 2:18 PM CST:

The United States recognizes progress that Cuba has made as a nation, its enormous achievements in education and in health care. And perhaps most importantly, I affirmed that Cuba’s destiny will not be decided by the United States or any other nation. Cuba is sovereign and, rightly, has great pride. And the future of Cuba will be decided by Cubans, not by anybody else.

“At the same time, as we do wherever we go around the world, I made it clear that the United States will continue to speak up on behalf of democracy, including the right of the Cuban people to decide their own future. We’ll speak out on behalf of universal human rights, including freedom of speech, and assembly, and religion. Indeed, I look forward to meeting with and hearing from Cuban civil society leaders tomorrow.

“But as you heard, President Castro has also addressed what he views as shortcomings in the United States around basic needs for people, and poverty and inequality and race relations. And we welcome that constructive dialogue as well — because we believe that when we share our deepest beliefs and ideas with an attitude of mutual respect, that we can both learn and make the lives of our people better.

“Part of normalizing relations means that we discuss our differences directly. So I’m very pleased that we’ve agreed to hold our next U.S.-Cuba human rights dialogue here in Havana later this year. And both of our countries will welcome visits by independent United Nations experts as we combat human trafficking, which we agree is a profound violation of human rights.”

Later that same year at a town meeting, after President Obama visited Havana, Cuba, he spoke to a group of people, and said in part that, “And I said this to President Castro in Cuba. I said, ‘look, you’ve made great progress in educating chi… young people.’ Every child in Cuba gets a basic education. That’s a huge improvement from where it was. Medical care… the life expectancy of Cubans is equivalent to the United States, despite it being a very poor county, because they have access to healthcare. That’s a huge achievement! They should be congratulated. But… you drive around Havana, and you see… this economy’s not working! It looks like it did in the 1950’s. And so, you have to be practical in asking yourself how can you achieve the goals of equality and inclusion…” 

During Tuesday night’s 25 February debate at the Gaillard Center in Charleston, South Carolina, Bernie Sanders was asked to clarify his statement, and while responding, was interrupted by an audience member who loudly booed shortly after he started speaking.

Senator Sanders said in response to the question,

“Of course you have a dictatorship in Cuba. What I said is what Barack Obama said in terms of Cuba. That Cuba made progress on education…[audience member booed loudly]

“Really? Really?

“Literacy programs are bad? What Barack Obama said is they made great progress on education and health care. That was Barack Obama.”

“Occasionally, it might be a good idea to be honest about American foreign policy, and that includes the fact that America has overthrown governments all over the world, in Chile, in Guatemala, in Iran, and where dictatorships, whether it’s the Chinese or the Cubans, do something good, you acknowledge that. But you don’t have to trade love letters with them.”

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