October 17, 2021


PopeFrancisObamaCastro“A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most.”
George Bernard Shaw

I recall days long gone, when the distinction between good and evil was made clear. The values of morality, generosity, sacrifice, hard work, and personal responsibility, were taught in our families, churches and schools.    Obviously as one matured it was understood that there are a lot of choices made that become blurred between the extremes, and that realization is required to appreciate the differences between alternatives that are not totally “bad” or “good”, and how judgments also varies relative to cultural differences.    That said, acceptance of other’s views were never meant to reverse the definition between right and wrong, and understanding differences was never intended to invalidate that concept.    At present the traditional family unit is becoming extinct, religions attacked, and school education under the false “political correctness values” seems to be teaching that there is no real difference between “right and wrong”, behavior being just a matter of free choice.

It is only by this awareness of the negative changes that our society and the world are going through, that one can comprehend the hysterical attraction that many are demonstrating for a failed, ruined nation led by two elderly “thugs”, Fidel and Raul Castro, whose road to fame is solely composed by their ability to rob and murder, and only achievement the one of converting a once thriving society and country, into one with a population forced to live in poverty.    The latest example of this recent “love affair” was the meeting of Raul Castro with Pope Francis.

As a leader of the largest Christian faith, but also the head of state of the Vatican, it is understandable that he has to transact with all kinds of persons, regardless of their political or moral background.    I am not Catholic, or practice any religion, but support faith as a crucial guide to many in their quest to improve their lives, and achieve the gratification that only comes when feeding, as the Native American elder described, “the good dog”.    In my opinion the Pope missed an opportunity to tell the world the benefits received by people that live in freedom, and the need for governments to allow civil rights and defend Democracy.    Instead his actions of overt friendship seemed to be an endorsement of Castro’s conduct, one that is diametrically opposed to any religious teachings and values.    I, like many in our generation of Cuban exiles, have come to the realization that the land we were forced to leave, and the culture that we learned will not return, at least in our lifetime, and the future of Cuba is in the hands of a new generation, one made by Castro that has never experienced living in freedom, and whose acceptance of change will be slow, and will start with basics such as food and shelter.    Acknowledging reality does not imply abandoning ones principles, or forgetting the pain and suffering lived when witnessing the assassination of innocent people, including friends, the massive unjust confiscation of properties acquired honestly by hard working citizens, or seeing a beautiful country devastated.    I, like many, will continue to be repulsed by the actions of others that through commission or omission are catering to the wishes of the Castro’s.    We will never support any false promises that a “rapprochement” with dictators will develop a true democracy, or that increasing one’s fortunes in these dealings will improve the conditions of the poor.    Capitalism led by dictators is an oxymoron.    Capitalism only works with free markets, with emphasis on free.    Total individual freedom is required in order to establish a prosperous society, and the other rhetoric is only meant to fool the naïve and/or uneducated.

Fernando J Milanes MD