Cuba policy is steeped in dysfunction on both sides. Last week, the State Department denied Fidel Castro’s niece Mariela Castro a visa to travel to Philadelphia to receive an award for her gay activism, no reason given. A State Department official said visa applications are confidential.
Fifty-one years into the policy, another Castro is in power and the island is still communist. The U.S. still trades with communist China despite its human rights violations. The U.S. still trades with communist Vietnam.
…Real democratic progress in Cuba will happen when the gates of travel are opened. You want democratic transformation in Cuba? There’s nothing more compelling than a bunch of celebrities sporting Prada bags in one hand and smoking puros in the other to inspire revolutions of capitalistic proportions.”