My Grandchildren’s Country / Fernando Dámaso

At times I’ve stopped to imagine the country I wish Cuba would be in my grandchildren’s future. First of all, and I am being absolutely frank, it shouldn’t be either like the current one, nor the one I’ve been living for the last fifty years, disregarding the happy and sad times it has given me.

I would rather bet for a country with a coherent Constitution, where each citizen, disregarding their ideology, political views or religion, sex, sexual preferences, race or economic situation, will be able to exercise all of their rights and they will be respected; for a just State, responsible, strictly law-abiding and a watch dog for it, one that doesn’t interfere in the private life of its citizens, a keeper of social harmony and peace, that guarantee public health and education for all, considering this task as its duty not as a favor; for an economic system which permits the free exercise of individual initiatives, a promoter of economic growth, and one that doesn’t become an obstacle to people’s life projects, where everyone should be able to contribute with their talent and effort and, honestly, receive and enjoy  benefits they’ve earned; for a prosperous and continuously developing society, where the highest priority will be national welfare, and where public officers will be changed after terms established by the constitution; for a country with a minimum of armed institutions, only the ones very necessary for national security and to maintain the order, where respect for others will be a duty.

Maybe, for some people, this is nothing more than a utopia, but I am convinced that a nation like this is possible, if we learn from our many mistakes, and work to assure the they will never happen again. For this, we need the creation and consolidation of strong and healthy democratic institutions, that will be respected by all of us, where opportunists and power psychos could not find refuge. A society morally solid, it only possible when all of its citizens have and exercise their civic conscience, and will be able to avoid, with their actions, any type of deviation.

It will be a hard and difficult task to achieve this. There is a lot that is negative accumulated materially and spiritually. In the first place, maybe without looking for it, the crude reality has been dismounting myths and barbarities committed over years. The way is being cleared as the days pass by. What is missing is what is necessary to build, something new, different.

Reinventing a nation, after so many wasted years, and the distance from its historic connections, will require dedication and sacrifice. There are lost generations and others exhausted or close to be it, but also generations pushing, anxious for the necessary changes and ready to achieve them, in spite of all the difficulties. In them, as Jose Marti did in the past, we should trust.

Translated by Adrian Rodriguez

June 19 2011