Cuba and its Future: An Incomplete Panel / Regina Coyula

On Saturday I put aside the clutter in my house, which seems endless, so as not to miss the panel “Cuba and its future,” sponsored by the digital space Estado de Sats. The panel was made up of the economist Karina Galvez, Yoani Sanchez as a digital media expert, Wilfredo Vallin as a lawyer, but the name that decided me to travel from Miramar, crammed into the noisy 179 Route full of boys planning to go to the beach, was the political scientist Pedro Campos. I went with the feeling that I would be a witness to an unprecedented and necessary event: The confluence of different opinions with openness and respect; the belief that the solution for Cuba is not in the hands of a group determined by official guidelines.

I can’t say I went in vain. I listened to very thoughtful opinions, met interesting people, but was unable to hear Karina, who was held for three hours at a Pinar del Rio police station when she prepared to travel to Havana, or Campos, who apologized for not attending due to personal reasons.

Pressures. Pressures of various kinds, but pressures nonetheless. But I have confidence that this citizens’ dialog will be openly produced, even without government approval. It is imperative that the Cuban situation, and those who doubt it should consult the political economy manuals. Or stick their heads out the window.

July 18 2011