Friday, December 19, 2014
Who's afraid of Cuba?
President Obama's move to normalize relationships with Cuba is huge, really. The ongoing embargo, "na na I can't see you" method of dealing with Cuba was, to my mind, one of the last big holdovers from the Cold War. Small enough we could pretend not to notice in the greater scheme of things, large enough that as long as we had it, there wasn't a lot of moving forward that could happen. Untouchable so long as we held to a Cold War neo-conservative basis -- if the Cold War is your raison d'etre, then letting go of Cuba policy is the last thing you'll ever do. There were missiles there, man! Commies on the border! Insanity!
And yet, here we are.
In a lot of ways, this strikes me as a definitive blow to the neo-con baby boomers that have been in control of politics for so very long. If they were really in charge, it never would have happened -- and yet, here we are, and by and large, people are pretty happy about it. It's really the "people are pretty happy about it" part that is crucial, I might add. Gay marriage is a social issue, but people could come to terms with it and broaden their horizons without giving up a Cold War stance. Marijuana, same thing. But nobody, and I mean nobody, can budge on Cuba from a pro-Cold War position. It is purely ideological. The fact that this broke to mild applause and mutterings of approval from the majority -- it's a sea change, and one I'm overjoyed to see.