Talking some months ago with a friend the polemic centered around the selective prohibitions maintained by our government against all common sense and that directly damage the Cuban people. Then my friend maintained that the last to be lifted, in his judgment, would be the prohibition against travel, but I maintained then, and I still believe it, that the last card of the deck that they will give up will be free access to the internet.
The strict control maintained during the revolutionary phase about all kinds of information, the iron censorship over all kinds of press and the absolute monopoly supported against all slogans over how much radio, publishing, writings, contests, magazines or pamphlets saw the light of day, and finally the more recent odyssey suffered by the ghostly fiber optic cable launched from Venezuela, which has been shrouded by a dense cloak of mystery — a topic officially excluded from our press — are elements that convince me of this.
The right to freely access information without censorship is inherent to the liberty of modern man, and opposing it is something like a confession of guilt by a retrograde power opposed to the most elemental rules of democracy. In the case of the Internet, that matter of touching a key in the morning while still in pajamas and having before your eyes as much publication as has been launched in the world — an unthinkable luxury within Cuba for the average Cuban — is a very serious matter.
I won’t fall for the naiveté of saying that in cyberspace everything is peachy and absolute transparency reins, free from the impurities of a tendentious press, but it is undeniable that, as never before, it offers opportunities to civil society to spread the truths that are contrary to the interests of the powers that be.
Internet censorship has been instituted as one of the crown jewels with respect to limiting our liberties.To oppose now in the second decade of the 21st century what has been one of the most ingenious creations of man, what has turned into a depository of his knowledge and spirituality like nothing else, is simply and plainly a crime. It is a duty of the Cuban people to demand tirelessly this right because from the very moment that it is won we will be much freer.
Although the final labor of censorship continues yielding its fruits. During the last weeks I have had, and I will have in the future, serious difficulties updating my page. Citizen Zero, like other blogs, will enter into a brief, involuntary silence, all for not having a site to connect us with the Internet. This makes me repeat once more the big question: if the Cuban government says it is in possession of the absolute truth, then . . .what does it fear? If the big world press publishes on its web its versions, instead of ours, so “ethical and objective,” publish theirs. It happens that I am an adult, university graduate and I know how to read; I want to access both with my own eyes, and I do not see the sense, now overwhelming me, that a reader on the National News on TV should go to the trouble of doing it for me.
Translated by mlk
May 27 2012