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Attitudes to Cuba

Travel Forums North America Attitudes to Cuba

1. Posted by magykal1 (Travel Guru 2026 posts) 10y

Well.. Fidel is 80. I noticed on the BBC website that the difference in attitude towards Cuba between posters from the USA and the rest of the world is remarkable. The American posters are universally negative about Cuba (oppressionist bastion of communism), whereas most others are really supportive (last stand of the left and socialist ideal in an increasingly consumerist world). I'm guessing the truth is a bit of both, but I'm wondering - what do Americans who have been to Cuba think? What do Cubans who have seen the world think?

2. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 10y

I'm a Canadian off to Cuba tomorrow - so I thought I'd post my two cents!

I actually had a long discussion about this with a friend yesterday. I'm not well versed in Cuban history, but I do know that the revolution was sparked by a movement that was fed up with Americans owning much of Cuba and hiring local workers for a pittance.

I don't necessarily agree with Communism (although a Democracy isn't the be all and end all - and any Democratic government that criticises citizens who question the governnment is bordering on Communism itself), but I tend to think the American government's view of Cuba stems from a very short memory. The Cuban people are entitled to universal higher education and health care - imagine not going broke because you need a hospital stay or want to earn a degree! Mind, the Cuban people are dirt poor and, even if they had money, there's nothing much to buy because of the embargo.

Cubans are also some of the happiest people in the world. They must know something we don't!

3. Posted by ChubbDub (Full Member 132 posts) 10y

Tway,

SHOULD Castro kick the bucket..., Do you think Canada should re-evaluate their relationship with Cuba? After all, it was only Trudeau who was Castro's old chum, and now that Castro's health is in question, a few people are thinking we should cut ties with Cuba altogether.

Sounds like a Harper initiative to me...

4. Posted by vickim (Full Member 125 posts) 10y

Well I have a point of view. I have travelled throughout Cuba and I have a close friend who grew up in Cuba. He has lived in a few countries and has travelled throughout the world. He now lives in Canada. I am a history major so I know about about politics and the past. I have also travelled the world, so I can make a fair comparison.

It is true that Cubans do not have many of the luxuries that we have, but they also do not have all the problems either. They have free education, including university, if they wish. They get a job and cannot be fired. They get a home and will never loose it. They get excellent healthcare. More doctors per capita than almost anywhere. The government looks after the people. When a hurricane hits the country everybody is warned in advance, evacuated, accounted for and given provisions. Clean up is immediate. They have an extremely proficent natural distaster plan, unlike the United States. Cubans do have access to luxuries at a better cost than we do, as they do not have a competitive market that marks up prices and they do not have huge taxes to pay as we do. My friend sends money to his family and they can by better things than what he can afford in Canada. Unfortunately, those who do not have family abroad cannot afford those luxuries.

One thing Cubans have that we do not is genuine happiness. I have never visited a place where people just each other so much. They all seem happy and friendly. Even in bad times, they do not get stressed. My bus hot a guy on a motorcycle. Everyone came running, they picked him up, bent the bike back in shape and off everyone went. There were no police, charges laid, insurance claims, fights and arugments, or lawsuits.

They do not have the perfect material culture we have. I am not sayingit is perfect there, but it is definately not perfect here either.

The previous post mentioned Harper and I'm not sure what he has to do with anything. He is far from the world leaders like Trudeau and Castro. Putting personal opinions aside, Harper will not be going down in any history books.

5. Posted by adv3nture (Budding Member 49 posts) 10y

Quoting magykal1

Well.. Fidel is 80. I noticed on the BBC website that the difference in attitude towards Cuba between posters from the USA and the rest of the world is remarkable. The American posters are universally negative about Cuba (oppressionist bastion of communism), whereas most others are really supportive (last stand of the left and socialist ideal in an increasingly consumerist world). I'm guessing the truth is a bit of both, but I'm wondering - what do Americans who have been to Cuba think? What do Cubans who have seen the world think?

Where are you getting your information that American's are universally negative about Cuba? I'd visit Cuba in a heartbeat if I could legally do so.

I'm 29, and live in Virginia Beach, Virginia and I don't know a single friend or family member that agrees with the U.S. policy towards Cuba. That includes my dad who typically supports the Republican party. Most, if not everyone I know wonders why we still treat Cuba like they Castro is the devil.

Sure the Cuban-Americans dislike the Cuban government, and those in Florida aren't too fond of Castro... but then again they have to put up with boatloads of Cubans trying to make their way to Florida on rafts made from anything they can find.

Americans aren't universally negative towards Cuba... hell as sad as it is, most don't even realize they CAN'T travel to Cuba and when they find out why they think it is stupid.

6. Posted by cruisegirl (Respected Member 244 posts) 10y

I am also a well travelled person, and I have been lucky enough to have Cuba on my list of islands that I have been to. In all of my travels, I have never met so many GENUINELY happy and friendly people. They live their lives very differently from how most of us do....there's nothing wrong with it, it's just not what we are used to. They have few problems, as mentioned above. Good healthcare, schooling, housing, etc. I've never heard one complaint from a Cuban about how their country is run.

Fidel is 80. Fidel has been sick for the past few weeks. And when it was first announced that he was in the hospital, the army reserves in Cuba went on call and were out in full force. Why? Because they were afraid of someone invading and taking over if Fidel was to pass away? Because they were/are afraid of someone coming in and trying to change their government and way of life and everything they know? But who on earth would do that? Why would anyone go in and try to change the government of a country that is running essentially flawlessly?

7. Posted by cruisegirl (Respected Member 244 posts) 10y

Where are you getting your information that American's are universally negative about Cuba? I'd visit Cuba in a heartbeat if I could legally do so.

It's not that we think Americans are universally negative about Cuba, I know they're not. But it's the American government that has all the issues with the Cubans, and sadly enough everyone gets lumped into the group.

I've met a huge amount of Americans that have expressed interest in travelling to Cuba, and while I was in Cuba I met two American men who had flown in via Montreal. The Cuban officials don't care, they will let you in with your US passport, but it's the US officials that won't allow you to fly there.

[ Edit: Fixed quote ]

8. Posted by taki (Full Member 132 posts) 10y

Just a few comments on Cuba and Cubans

Cubans teach you to live life

If 99% of Cubans out of Cuba were totally free to decide where to live for sure they would choose again to live in Cuba. If they "could" they would go back immediately for sure.

Once you know Cuba, you just have to go back.

Nobody can give opinions on Cuba and Cubans without having visited the island, it seems to provoke different impressions to all people.

There's a lot to learn there, there's too little to understand.

JUST GO TO CUBA AND HAVE YOUR OWN IMPRESSIONS!!!

AND YES THEY ARE THE HAPPIEST PEOPLE I HAVE EVER SEEN!

TAKA