29 August 2008

Raul's Self Fulfilling Prophesy

She’s 89 pounds soaking wet, Yoani Sanchez is.

But she’s a giant.

Today we learned that Yoani joined the rest of the Porno Para Ricardo band members and some friends at a concert in Havana to protest and demand the release of jailed punk rocker Gorki Aguila.

Their plans to protest at the concert were published all over the internet by CB and the Cuban Underground to encourage other Cubnas to join in. So Yoani knew beforehand that taking part in the pro-Gorki protest would be met with the regime’s usual intolerant and brutal response. And still she went. The young mother and wife who already risks so much by serving as a voice to the millions of her generation that have been condemned to perpetual silence by the regime and its accomplices abroad. But still she went. She was assaulted and shaken up in the ensuing regime-lead violence, but not silenced.

She’s the most dangerous woman in Cuba because millions eagerly await the words and thoughts that are too infrequently published on her blog, Generation Y. And the whole world is awaiting her next post on the Gorki experience. She is outside the Playa Municipal court with Gorki’s family, friends, band mates and lawyer…waiting for the “trial” to begin.

Yoani never ceases to amaze and humble me.

And speaking of “dangerousness” …

The regime, frozen in fear, finally decided to make a move against Gorki when it thought that the world wasn’t paying attention and charged him with “dangerousness”.

This was their attempt to silence his dissent, to pull him from the limelight and hush his voice, to make him a non-person who is not even worth the trouble of a real trial-or its Cuban facsimile. Of course, since his only crime has been to tell the truth, the regime couldn’t put him on trial and embarrass itself in the eyes of the world by trying a punk rocker for being anti-establishment and poking fun at the system and the authority figures. I mean, that’s what punk rockers do.

So they pretend he’s a danger, a potential criminal and they sentence him in a venue where no evidence has to be presented because it’s a totally subjective and arbitrary “opinion” of the authorities whether one is a potential criminal or not or whether one is a danger to society or not. The evidence is an opinion and only one opinion counts in Cuba.

But jailing someone for “dangerousness” is even more absurd in the eyes of free 21st century societies than trying him for making fun of the Castro brothers. It makes headlines, especially since Gorki has loudmouthed friends and fans in the Americas and in Europe.

Gorki is not afraid to go to jail. He once said that everyone in Cuba is in jail and that the only difference is the size of the jail cell. He’s been moved to a smaller cell; that is all.

Ironically, though, the regime’s charge of “dangerousness” has become a self fulfilling prophesy. By cowardly jailing him for “potential crimes” against the revolution, they have turned an innocuous, brash and vulgar rocker into a world-wide cause célèbre- a symbol. Gorki has become the symbol of his generation’s struggle to have their frustrations heard and addressed and the absurd Alice in Wonderland like kangaroo court where Gorki’s human rights are being violated as I write this, has been turned into the symbol of the intolerant and brutal revolution that represses and violates human rights.

Gorki has never, ever, been free since he was born into a revolution that rejected his uniqueness and creativity, just as he rejected its conformity and dogma. The regime has reduced the size of his cell, yes, but the “redecoration” has come at a steep price. The Castros have shown that they exert total control and can do whatever they want to whomever they want-just in case anybody thought things, they were a changin’. Gorki’s cell is now smaller, he can’t play with his band or phone his friends abroad, but he has become an international symbol for the plight of all Cubans. Now he is truly “dangerous.”

2 comments:

Fantomas said...

pasando revista y apuntando

Gorki is at home now

Charlie Bravo said...

Thanks Gusano, for your support!