The Rubio Hit

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There are sources who think the whole Rubio dust-up is asinine.  I agree.  Andy S. Gomez, of the Miami Institute of American Studies is a Democrat.  He is defending Rubio, for many of the same reasons I am going to defend him.  It is about the ignorance of the Cuban exile experience.

“…Further, The Washington Post falsely and without proof, writes that “being connected to the post-revolution exile community gives a politician cachet that could never be achieved by someone identified with the pre-Castro exodus, a group sometimes viewed with suspicion.”

This is simply false. I have spent my career studying the Cuban exile community and can say with authority that no distinction is made within the exile community between those who arrived in the years leading up to the revolution, and those who came after. They all share the painful heritage of not being able to return home. It’s no wonder The Washington Post made this claim without a single bit of proof to back it up. Because it doesn’t exist.

In the Cuban exile community, there are many stories like Marco Rubio’s family.  Many children of exiles don’t know precisely what dates their parents left Cuba, went back to Cuba or ultimately determined Cuba was heading in the wrong direction under Castro.  But they do know that the reason they were born in the United States or now live here is because their parents are exiles because they refused to raise them in Castro’s Cuba….”

On Thursday, the WPost basically tried to destroy Marco Rubio to the point where his political career would be ruined.  It was a pre-hit in any VP consideration.  Jennifer Rubin has a follow-up on the story.  Rubin’s version of Rubio’s tale is so like other stories I’ve heard over the years, coming out of Cuba’s exiles.  Never forget – they are exiles.  Cuba is still the promised land, their homeland.  Marco Rubio is a patriotic first generation American, but in his heart, there will always be a special tie to Cuba.

Politico

I’ve seen it time and time again.  It is part heart-break and mostly romantic.  It fuels conversation, even after all these years, in sidewalk cafes in Miami.  I suspect in 2062 or so, if things have not changed, they will still be sitting on those same sidewalks drinking Cuba Libres and plotting an invasion of the island.

Rubin’s rendition of the tale highlights just how pathetic the general American recall of events is.  Marco Rubio’s tale is so very similar to the ones I’ve heard, over the years.  People today evidently are incapable of realizing that, before Castro seized control in the early 1960s, that people traveled back and forth from Florida to Cuba the way we go from the US to Canada.

WPost

Are people really this stupid?

“…On May 27th, Charles Kerchner, a retired Navy commander in Pennsylvania who runs a birther blog mostly aimed at President Barack Obama, posted a monster scoop about Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, the GOP’s rising star.

According to naturalization documents that he had obtained, Rubio’s parents had come to the U.S. from Cuba in 1956, not after Fidel Castro took power in 1959, as Rubio’s Senate biography claimed….”

The worst part of this is the fact that I am loath to agree with Eric Erickson, but I do on this one.  He also has a little background on the writer of the story.

Human Events

My Spanish professor and her husband were Cuban exiles.  Unlike the Ricky Ricardo story, the Cuban Revolution began in 1953.  By 1956, the proverbial handwriting was on the wall, literally, almost.  Before the Cuban Revolution, people could travel back and forth from the US to Cuba, no passport needed.  My grandparents did so several times.  It was the South Florida thing to do.  My professor and her husband traveled back and forth from Havana to Miami at least a half dozen times a year.  It was no big deal, like going from El Paso to Juarez.

By 1956 or so, her husband realized it was not going to end well.  He and his wife would travel to Miami, taking a few things with them, leaving them at a friend’s home there in Miami. They were able to get out many of their smaller, more portable family treasures, photographs, and her jewelry.  In 1961, about the time of the Bay of Pigs, she told us her husband came home from work and told her they were leaving.  She packed up the kids like they were going to have another weekend in Miami.  Many of their belongings were confiscated at the airport by Castro’s henchmen.

They never returned.

Until they were able to find work in Florida, they lived off the sale of her jewelry and the money her husband had been able to hide away there in Florida.

I’m not a big defender of Rubio, but this is a terribly unfair hit, promoted, once again, by people who are absolutely ignorant of history.  If they were not, they would realize his tale is no different from any of the other exiles.  The lucky ones were able to get away the way Rubio’s parents did.

 

 

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