Patria o Muerte

On a daily basis, a least a couple of patients will ask me, “What is going on in Cuba?”

I receive this question pretty frequently, so I decided to make it today’s post. As you might know, my parents immigrated here from Cuba in the 1960s.

For a while now, the Cuban people have wanted change.

From what I have heard, Cubans are treated like second class citizens in their own country. Tourists with dollars, Euros, and Yen are treated with more respect than their own citizens.

I have never traveled to Cuba, but my sisters have gone.

When my sister goes, they do not stay at the nice hotels that are kept separate from the Cuban population. They go and stay with family.

They have seen first-hand, how the government treats their people – horribly.

There is a store that is called The American Dollar Store. You are only allowed to shop at this store with US dollars. This store is full of food. You go to this store and are able to find all kinds of products.

You pay them with dollars, and they give you Cuban pesos for your change.

Some Cuban residents, have family in the US that are able to send them US dollars. These residents are pretty much the only ones that could get their hands on dollars and are able to shop here.

The rest of the Cuban population are only able to shop at the government stores that accept pesos. These grocery stores are nearly empty, with no product.

Every month the government will provide one chicken for the month. Then another day, they give out beef for a family. Another day they will give out toothpaste and so on.

Cubans will wait in lines for several hours just to get deodorant. Many times, they will run out of the product, and you’ve just wasted several hours of the day, standing in line.

If you are lucky enough to get your chicken or other food, then there is also a really good chance it will spoil.

Every day the government shuts off the electricity for at least 8 hours a day. If you have any food in the refrigerator, that food will go bad.

The people of Cuba have been more vocal in the last year or two.

Fidel Castro’s regime had a saying, “Patria o Muerte”. Which means “Country or Death”.

The last year, I’ve been seeing a meme on Facebook from Cubans that says, “Patria y Vida”. Which means “Country and Life”. This is something I never would have seen in the past.

People would have been too scared. They would have been nervous that the government would find their post and get thrown in prison.

The situation has gotten so dire now, that they don’t care. They need to be heard.

Having people that I know, going through this horrible situation, puts things in prospective.

I have nothing to complain about in my life.

My family is healthy, we are all safe, and I never worry if I’m going to eat. It helps to put things into perspective. Keeping close to our hearts, the people and things we cherish most.

Hopefully, Cubans are being heard. The world is watching.

Floss Like A Madman!

Emilio “Patria y Vida” Couret

World-Class Chicago, IL, Dentist, Dr. Emilio Couret for Exceptional Dental Care
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Ellie B.
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