Letters to the Editor

From the issue of April 5, 2001

Ms. Moreno, smell the café con leche, por favor. Many Cuban politicians, as well as many more close-minded exiles, do paint a horrible picture of our town. (Yes, our town, not just the Cubans'.) Witness the maniacs in the street insulting our president because he decided to follow the law as well as his paternal heart in order to send Elian home with his father. What do you expect when many of your fellow Cubans carry on the way they do?

Many of your fellow Cubans never venture outside your own community and attempt to gauge the feelings of the larger community and nation around you. How many times has a Cuban politician offended the black community (snubbing Nelson Mandela, snubbing Andrew Young)? How about telling prestigious events such as the Latin Grammys they can go elsewhere because of some ridiculous local rule about doing business with Cuba? We do business with China and did so with the Soviet Union. How about blocking the highways when the Cuban community has the gall to protest how we dare send some of their recent arrivals back?

Another thing: Don't characterize people who were waving flags and expressing their support of our president and our country as "Homestead inbreeds." True, flying a Confederate flag was not in good taste, nor were the signs personally insulting to Cubans and other Hispanics. But most of us waving our American flags did not indulge in these acts. So don't complain, Ms. Moreno, if someone calls you an ignorant Cuban or dumb Marielito, seeing as how you engage in name-calling yourself.

Paul E. Czekanski
Miami

Misunderstood Miami
Free weekly clearly doesn't get it: As the daughter of a Cuban woman and a Dominican man, born and raised in New York, I have come to a conclusion that will surely offend some but elate others: Although some (and I stress the some) Miami Cubans are overly ambitious, self-righteous, and sometimes downright annoying, they are still Latinos. As any semi-intelligent person knows, Latinos are a minority in the United States, and to put down Cubans repeatedly in New Times is simply racist and discriminatory. As a person obsessed with democracy, I also find you guys to be slightly stained with an image of commie pinkos.

I grew up among whites, blacks, Jews, and Puerto Ricans, and never realized Cubans were so proud until I moved here a year and a half ago. Although many Cubans annoy me with their Cubaniche talk and their overuse of fluorescent colors, there is one point that cannot be denied: Wherever Cubans go, it becomes a better place for everyone. With the exception of Jews, no other group has emigrated to the United States and made so much of themselves.

Now let's talk about Dominicans in New York. While many Cubans work long hours and slave away because they have too much pride to take government money, Dominicans have, in just a few short years, become the second-highest group receiving welfare in New York City, second only to Hassidic Jews (but we won't get into that now).

My own father, a man I hardly even know, was once the richest drug dealer in Queens. All my male Dominican cousins drive Toyota 4Runners and make decent money selling drugs. But every month they still manage to get a piece of that government cheese. I am the only one of my father's thirteen children who did not grow up in the projects, which I attribute to my Cuban mother.

Now do not mistake my putdown of Dominicans as self-loathing. I love every Dominican part of me. I just don't feel that Dominicans have made the strides that Cubans have. And you know what else? It's all right for me to talk about Dominicans because I am Dominican. It's not all right for whites, blacks, and non-Cuban Latinos to put down Cubans. Every time I read a New Times article or letter to the editor that negatively depicts Cubans, I realize that jealousy is a very, very ugly thing.

Name Withheld by Request
North Miami Beach

Mismatched Miami
Head for Broward or die: Reading these letters to the editor shows who it is New Times caters to. Almost all who support this paper tend to be resentful, bigoted, Latino-hating whites. Just read the letters coming from people like Jonathan McDouglas of Fort Lauderdale or Linda Theis from Davie. They praise New Times for "exposing" the Cubans. For her part Theis is proud to fly her Confederate flag, and, by the way, she just loves this paper.

I enjoy some of New Times's stories, but it's disturbing to see a negative story about Cubans every week. The only Cubans New Times seems to support are those who say anything critical about the Cuban community. Like it or not, Miami is a Latin city. I myself am of Cuban and Puerto Rican descent. Projections put Miami at more than 80 percent Latino within twenty years.

Keep hating us if you must, but if you do, then New Times won't be in business much longer. Until then keep on being the voice of some angry racist crackers in Broward.

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