A week ago, the mayor of Miami, Francis Suarez, asked that Cuban musicians be excluded from the list of participants in the traditional end-of-year concert organized by the reggaeton artist Pitbull in Miami.
Suarez told the newspaper El Nuevo Herald, he had asked the organizers to “analyse the participation of these artists and the history of Gente de Zona as regards the Cuban regime …”.
In reality, the reasons given by the mayor to censor the artists are nothing more than a means to follow the policy of blockade against Cuba extended by the Trump administration.
In a memorandum signed by the President and sent to the State Department at the beginning of November, it was announced that “the United States will not provide non-humanitarian or trade-related assistance, nor will it allow officials or employees of the governments of Cuba, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Syria and Russia to participate in educational and cultural exchange programs during the fiscal year 2020”.
It should be noted that during the so-called thaw of relations between Cuba and the United States in the Obama era, these people in Miami did not pay attention to the “history of Gente de Zona as regards the Cuban regime.” In fact in those years, the now censored duo was even awarded the keys to the city of Miami.
Generally though the city has had an intolerant spirit regarding artists and musicians based in Cuba. Miami, has stood out “culturally” for the burning of paintings, threat of bombs in concerts, crushing of disks and acts of repudiation against anyone who does not renounce, in the “land of freedom”, their roots and their homeland.
In addition to Gente de Zona, the campaign against Cuban artists unleashed on social networks by Pérez Roura and Ninoska Pérez, now disguised as clowns on YouTube, has placed other artists such as El Pedadores, Micha and singer Haila María Mompié. The first was excluded last November from a Thanksgiving concert and the second was declared persona non-grata by the mayor.
The machine unleashed against Cuban artists by these new spokesmen now seems directed against the entire Cuban people. It is the media justification of another strand of the blockade.
It is no secret to anyone that, as El Nuevo Herald said in its announcement of Trump’s anti-cultural declaration: “Cultural exchange between Cuba and the United States has been the target of harsh criticism by parts of the Cuban exile community who consider it to be a way of sending foreign currency to the Government of the island. ”