Demetrio's Rules

The world according to public school board member Demetrio Perez includes exile philosophy, Elian propaganda, and old-Havana-school politics.

"Personally I had the honor and the opportunity to participate in this magnificent act, which took place at 11:00 a.m. yesterday, Friday, here in Sunset Elementary School." He recounted how nearly 1000 students joined hands for one minute of quiet reflection.

This impressive act transformed "our neighborhoods, our streets, our avenues, into one giant classroom," he declared. His idea was such a resounding success, he said, that this celebration should become a traditional celebration for the Friday before Memorial Day. "It was a great success in every sense," he announced.

Immediately thereafter, Perez's guest that day, an engineer from Chicago named Luis Era, offered this benediction to his host: "All of the Cubans in Chicago understand the work you do in the teaching profession, and we're sure that you will be one of the great bulwarks that Cuba can count on at the time of reconstruction."

The two then went on to discuss an article Era had written in Libre some weeks before that explored the possibility that Fidel Castro would use Elian Gonzalez for a blood sacrifice in an Afro-Cuban religious ritual. Era did make one error, though, for which Perez corrected him. The guest referred to Libre as "your" magazine.

"Ours, ours," Perez insisted.

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