Rebeca Monzo, 21 October 2017 — The mass media in our country boast a lot about Cuban culture. And it’s that which is our biggest weakness right now.
Starting on January 1st, 1959, when they started to prioritise politics and pass new decrees and laws, which steadily grew more distant from our famous 1940 Constitution, which was never re-established, our moral, social and civic concepts began to weaken. This was when the family, in a state of disintegration, and schools, faced with loss of professionals who had up to then imparted education, were their most important bastions.
Yesterday afternoon, in a TV Cubana programme, Palco Indiscreto, the journalist who runs it, astonished me by courageously raising this very delicate topic on an official channel on the occasion of Cuban Culture Day. He said that we received lots of education, but we lacked an overall culture, in spite of our great musicians, dancers and artists in general.
That’s true, because culture includes formal education, good manners, respect for others, knowing how to talk and behave, qualities which unfortunately we are losing, including university graduates, whose language and manners leave much to be desired.
We have lost our respect for other people, respect for third-party property, respect for our familiy elders, or what’s left of them. As well as respect for keeping to schedule, adhering to accepted commitments, for keeping the city clean and tidy, the love of nature, including neglect of animals, trees and gardens, being careless about dress when going out into the street, good manners, health, how to greet people properly and to make an apology.
What with these great losses, which the educational institutions and society in general have not worried themselves about maintaining or rescuing, how can we pretend to be proud of being a cultured country?
Hopefully, one day we will be able to genuinely proudly celebrate October 20th, the Day of Cuban Culture.
Translated by GH