U.S. and Cuba both violate human rights

By Alan

In Mayra Gomez’s letter (“Cuba’s human rights abuses trivialized,” Monday) on Cuba’s socio-political conditions, she claims that she “would make the same claim for the United States but that is not my point” — this, in reference to human rights violations in Cuba? Well, Mayra, why is this not your point? Is it all right to denounce human rights violations on a neighbor country but not your own country?
It is not my purpose to count the number of human rights violations in Cuba, but to limit this whole aspect to one thing: common sense. All nations of the world recognize that nobody has the right to invade or control their nations without being invited. But for a long time, the “law” of common sense has been substituted by the law of the “strongest.” Of course, this is not a law, but a new concept of “democracy” to maintain a friendly relationship with the less powerful. Then they legitimize this violence, humiliating the dignity of another country.
As it turns out, the United States is going to tell the Cuban people how to switch to a “democratic” government and how to adhere to any treaty or law that would justify its imposed authority in Cuba. And they will validate these actions by using pretty terms like human rights, civil society, etc. This is always done to fragment any social development that tries to implement more progressive concepts within the state.
Here in the United States, can we perpetuate a system that keeps 38 to 40 million people without access to health care and not call it a human rights violation? The constant abuse and persecution of immigrants from Asia, Mexico and Latin America in general (I wonder if illegal immigrants from Canada or Europe are subjected to these same abuses?) is not a human rights violation?
The monopoly of a government with a two-party system and its increasingly financial influence on government — is this the type of representative democracy that you want to see in Cuba?
Nobody is claiming that the Cuban government is perfect or that Castro is some saint to be worshipped. The whole idea is to present another perspective that is different from the one portrayed in the media. But before you have the audacity of confronting your neighbor about abuses in their home, you should take the effort to straighten your own house first.
Yes, there are human rights violations in Cuba and yes, this needs to be addressed, but this can only be solved if the United States recognizes Cuba’s right to self-determination and sovereignty. The experience lived by the students in Cuba were real, no matter how much they contrast with your opinion; and they were shared with Cuban families (not the government). Sorry if this is hard for you to swallow. I only hope that you don’t mean to talk about “democracy” as represented by Gloria Estefan’s $5 million mansion in Miami. Cuidado Ms. Gomez, la ignorancia es atrevida! (Editor’s note: The literal translation is “Beware Ms. Gomez, ignorance is daring!”)

Alan Panelli works for University Hospital.