The U.S. moved one step closer to ending the 50-year Cuban embargo with last week’s retirement announcement of Republican congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart. In his words, “One of the achievements of which I am most proud was the codification, the writing into U.S. Law of the U.S. embargo on Castro.”
The mention of Castro is a hint of the congressman’s hate that is entangled in this U.S. Law. The 17-year congressman has passionately lobbied for the release of Cuban exile terrorist Orlando Bosch in the 1976 airplane bombing. The congressman has also been affiliated with terrorist-related associations like CANF, whose members were involved in the failed 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion which prompted hatred for President Kennedy and his family. Now, with the concurrent retirement of Congressman Patrick Kennedy representing the first time since 1962 that a Kennedy has not held office in Congress, Diaz-Balart can retire. The question is, will his brother Mario (also a congressman) continue to advocate along the same lines—for naval blockade against Cuba, for defending Velentin Hernandez (who murdered a Cuba negotiator supporter), and for blocking President Carter’s 2002 visit to Cuba?
With this hate for Castro, one has to ask—What’s it really about? Where does Lincoln’s hate come from? Here’s the answer: Lincoln’s father, a Cuban exile who died in 2005, was Cuba’s minister of interior and was elected senator but did not serve due to Castro’s rise to power. Lincoln also has an aunt named Mirta Diaz-Balart who is a Cuban exil—and also just happens to be the first wife of Fidel Castro. Their son, Fidelito, has been fought over, similar to the Elian Gonzalez 2002 custody case. Add to this that Castro confiscated Diaz-Balart’s property upon exile and what you have here is, in short, one big family feud.
And if you think this kind of thing, this kind of grudge, this kind of hate, doesn’t affect Main Street America, that it doesn’t affect “me,” then you have been duped!
Take the estimated 800,000 Cuban exiles in Miami who hate Castro because it is the expected thing to do. Well, their lopsided representation in Congress has sustained an embargo in opposition to the U.N. (the world), widened our trade imbalance, and impeded our economy in terms of jobs. Imagine, less than one percent of our population pushing around the other 99 percent all because of a family feud. The consequences of hate are not bound; hate is the face of evil that can transcend generations if you let it. We have to demand that we just let go and move on.—Henry G. Delforn, Carpinteria, CA