Migrations / Fernando Dámaso

Migration, the movement of people from one place to another for economic, social or political reasons, as well as the periodic traveling of some animals in search of food and for other needs, is as old as the emergence of life on earth. These motions have always occurred. In some countries the population is practically formed by immigrants and their descendents. The cases abound and are well known. No one, in principle, is against it.

However, when talking about migration, it must be undertaken legally, meeting the requirements established by the country or countries that are going to receive the immigrant. People allow those they please to enter their homes, and establish rules of conduct. It should happen the same way with countries. The immigrant should understand, accept and respect this.

You may wonder: where does this free lecture comes from? The reason is very simple: in my country, which by the way doesn’t welcome immigrants, the authorities have become advocates for those who emigrate to other countries, demanding for them, whether they are legal or illegal, fair treatment and respect for all the inherent rights of human beings.

To speak of the noose in the hanged man’s house has always been considered in bad taste. This is what bothers me about this attitude of solidarity. Considering that it is not adding fuel to the fire, or in a malicious way, to help towards the solution of the emigration problem which, it’s important to say, will always exist. In the first place, the responsibility belongs to the countries whose citizens, for one reason or other are forced to emigrate (Cuba stands out in this). If favorable economic, social and political conditions are created, there will be fewer people emigrating. Cuba was never a country of emigrants, quite the contrary, it has been one of immigrants. Here, Spaniards, Chinese, Japanese, African, Lebanese, Americans, Syrians, Hebrews, French, Haitians, Latin Americans, and even Russians and other nationalities settled and founded families and created wealth. It must have happened for a reason! Today, Cuba is a country of emigrants: there are Cubans in all the corners of the world. It happens for a reason!

The country that receives emigrants and, therefore, has immigrants, has every right to establish how many laws and regulations it deems appropriate to achieve peaceful coexistence and national security. It is assumed that somebody, in an illegal way, will try to stay in order to benefit from the national laws. Here–the source of rants in defense of legal or illegal immigrants in other countries–discriminatory measures are applied, and citizens are not allowed to reside in a locality or province, or to relocate elsewhere, without proper government permits. Moreover, they cannot even temporarily visit their families without such permission. This, not to mention family members living abroad (be they children, siblings, parents etc.) who, when they stay in their family’s house when they come to visit, must have authorization from The Office of Immigration and Foreign Affairs, paying 45 CUC (hard currency) ahead of time for each visit (regardless of whether it is for babies or elderly). A complicit silence is maintained over these national aberrations. As it more or less says in the hit song: I have a telescope to see far away. Perhaps I need another to see up close!

Translated by: Adrian Rodriguez

July 19 2011