Prostitution in Cuba
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    Prostitution in Cuba – Solutions to a Current Reality (Part 1)

    Prostitution in Cuba: Solutions to a Current Reality (Part 1) / Somos+,
    Jose Manuel Presol
    Posted on November 7, 2015

    “How can we get out of school to meet foreigners?”

    Somos+, Jose Manuel Presol, 3 November 2015 — I’ll never forget a
    comment from my father: “Jose Manuel, remember we made the Revolution,
    among other things, so that Cuba would no longer be the whorehouse of
    the United States. Years later, during a rather heated discussion with a
    person who said he was close to the so-called “Committee to the Support
    the Commander,” I repeated what my father said and his response was,
    “the compañeros didn’t do it for vice, but for patriotism, to bring
    currency to the Revolution,” and I’ll never forget that either. It was
    one of the rare times in my life when, faced with the cynicism, I was
    floored.

    The truth is that now Cuba is no longer the whorehouse of the United
    States, but it is for Canadians, Spaniards, Italians, Mexicans and
    anyone landing on the island who brings enough dollars or euros in their
    pockets to pay a pittance for something that in their own country, if
    they offered that amount someone would laugh in their face.

    I am not trying to do a sociological or anthropological study on the
    current phenomenon of prostitution in Cuba, there are people much more
    capable than I am than those who have done and continue to do such
    studies. What I want to express is the problem, trying to offer some
    solutions.

    Prostitution in Cuba, as in almost all countries, is not a new problem.
    It has existed for many years. The oldest antecedents in our country are
    perhaps, not counting the brothels erected by landowners, in non-harvest
    times, to “take advantage” of the surplus labor, where free slaves
    prostituted themselves to earn a few pesos to buy the freedom of their
    children and other family members. The big difference today is how
    widespread it is.

    This generalization is not based on the huge number of women, men, girls
    and boys who dedicate themselves to is, but to the chain of accomplices
    and abettors that come with it, which means that a high percentage of
    society is directly or indirectly involved in it.

    The first accomplice and abettor is the State itself, I mean the current
    Cuban government that — despite its laws, its supposed warnings, its
    famous three warning letters, after which the victims can be sent to
    prison for 1 to 3 years — tolerates the situation.

    I say victim because everyone, absolutely everyone who engages in or
    tolerates prostitution is a victim of the situation created. All are
    victims and make up a long chain.

    The chain is formed, at a minimum, by:

    1.The teachers who allow the girls and boys trusted to their care leave
    classes with impunity to prostitute themselves, and they do it, because
    the remuneration they receive and the methods at their disposal are not
    adequate to exercise their profession in proper conditions. It is hard
    for me to think of a teacher who on a whim is capable of letting their
    students prostitute themselves. Their morality is simply “asleep,” if it
    is that, because of the need to solve their own problems and for the
    lack of an honorable alternative from the system itself after more than
    fifty years and the same thing happens with the rest of the links in the
    chain.
    2. The police who, far from preventing the offense of the offenses, in
    the case of minors, prefer to look the other way and take a few Cuban
    convertible pesos (CUC), that allow them to resolve some of their needs.
    I am not capable, as in the former case, of imagining any component of
    the People’s Revolutionary Police (PNR) acting this way for the pleasure
    of it. They are all aware that the person who prostitutes themselves
    tomorrow could be their daughter, their brother, their lifelong friend.
    3. Those in charge of control in the hotels, who are the in the same
    case as the previously. They know perfectly well that today someone
    walking through the doors of their hotel could be their sister, or that
    this could be happening at that precise moment in any other hotel. No
    one wants to see a loved one on the arm of a tourist stinking of rum.
    4. The pimps. Even these, although they personally dedicate themselves
    to the offense, I cannot imagine they are very comfortable in the role
    of suppliers of “fresh meat” if they could dedicate themselves to some
    other activity. Evidently, in the world as it is today, everyone,
    absolutely everyone deserves, at least, the benefit of the doubt.
    5. The prostitutes themselves. There is no greater victim. Here we can’t
    help but affirm that, absolutely everyone is the owner of their own body
    and can to with it what seems most opportune, but they cease to be such
    owners from the moment when a child is hungry, a mother needs medicine,
    a brother has to pay a debt, or simply they need the power to have
    whatever is not within their reach that could make them feel equal to
    those yumas (foreigners) who brazenly pass in front of them. Here we
    must highlight the high number of people who engage in prostitution,
    despite an elevated cultural level and superior training, seeing
    themselves brought to it because of not being remunerated in their
    profession and on the point of being unable to solve their basic daily
    problems at home.

    In short, the ultimate culprit is none other than the government
    oppressor, which has imposed an undeclared blockage that is the origin
    of the problems we suffer.

    Source: Prostitution in Cuba: Solutions to a Current Reality (Part 1) /
    Somos+, Jose Manuel Presol | Translating Cuba –
    translatingcuba.com/prostitution-in-cuba-solutions-to-a-current-reality-part-1-somos-jose-manuel-presol/

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