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HavanaJournal.com: Cuban Americans

Living with the Embargo - A Cuban American tale

Posted January 18, 2005 by publisher in Cuban Americans.
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Waldo Parravicini, Cuban-American, Los Angeles, California.

Leaving behind a very extensive, loving and perfectly together family I came to the USA in 1958 to attend college. Then taken away freedom, Washington vomited the Cuba travel regulations that to this date continues to divide, separate and hurt all of us here in the US as well as all of us there in Cuba. Presently I have close relatives in Cuba, including a sister, seniors and children and close relatives here in the USA including a sister, my mother and my sons.
It was not until 1979 that the travel regulations allowed me for a short period, to visit my terminally ill father in Cuba. In the 1990s the regulations again relaxed a little and I was allowed to visit only once a year, but now my visits are reduced to a miserably brutal once every perhaps three years (right now there are 15-20,000 applications sitting unanswered on the bureaucratic desks of US Treasury). And, how many times could my 93 years old mother visit her oldest daughter, grand and great grand children in Cuba?

Against my will and for decades I have been deprived to attend important happenings in Cuba such as the death and funeral of my father, grandfather, uncles, aunts, cousins and high school buddies; weddings, births and baptisms of nephew, niece, grandnephews, grandnieces and cousins. There were the long illnesses of my father, grandfather, uncle, niece, cousin and grandnephew for which and thanks to Washington’s restrictions it got very difficult, onerous and lengthy to obtain and deliver vital medications, thus prolonging the suffering and distress of patients and relatives at both sides of the strait. Telling of the cruelty, hurting and violation of my human rights (and that of my family) caused by the travel ban could go on and on; its hypocrisy and double standard (go not to Cuba but OK to China, Vietnam, Russia, Saudi Arabia. etc.) are incredible and not worthy of any nation that truly values family and God.

All those that are behind the travel ban should be totally deprived of visiting close relatives for at least three years. Perhaps this might bring civilization, reality and Christianity to their senses. Or may be it is that they could be sadistic or blinded by odium, or don’t give a damn or care about family. Believably that could be the rationale why they support anti-freedom regulations, stretched suffering, compulsory family divisions and mercilessness onto generations of innocent children in Cuba.

Member Comments

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On January 19, 2005, YoungCuban wrote:

A very sad story indeed,but you bet your ass no restriction or anyone for that matter can stop me from seeing my family in Cuba!

I’ll go through another country if I must,let them fine me all they want,what are they going to get from a poor man anyway?

In all honesty the main problem here folks is that those who bitch and moan about the new travel restrictions are doung absoulutely nothing about it!

Why dont we ALL who are against the travel restrictions get together and form a massive trip to Cuba,lets invite the media,the papers etc.

Lets go through Mexico,Jamaica,Panama,Bahamas,Caymans etc. lets get thousands of us together and swarm every third country airport with us in their planes going to Cuba!

I suppose the majority are csraed of fines or jail time?

Now that to me is very sad as Cuban history has shown us that Cubans once stood strong and proud and never let another countries government take over the Cuban way, it is a shame that great men like Carlos Manuel De Cespedes memory has become nothing but just that,history, instead of inspiration!

I am set and ready if a massive demonstration of our American rights to travel is ever planned.

Otherwise,shut the hell up about not being “Allowed” to see your family,nobody can tell me I am NOT allowed!

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On January 19, 2005, Dana Garrett wrote:

>>A very sad story indeed,but you bet your ass no restriction or anyone for that matter can stop me from seeing my family in Cuba!<<

Well said, YoungCuban.  Although I have no family in Cuba, I feel the same way.  No freaking law would keep me from seeing a family member in Cuba, especially if she or her were terminally ill. We have obligations and duties that are far more sacred than obeying laws.  And family is merely one of them.

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On January 20, 2005, jesusp wrote:

Well said YoungCuban, let me know when you get enough people to go as a large group. For my part I do not plan to stop visiting my family in Cuba because of Mr. Bush or anyone else for that matter. Restrictions are only effective if people abide by them and I do not intend to.