U.S. President pays a diplomatic visit to Cuba for the first time in nearly nine decades.
This is a special moment for Cubans especially for the thousands of black Cubans in Havana. They are preparing for President Obama’s three-day visit as they decorate the renowned Island and waiting for the historical moment of their lives today on Sunday March 20, 2016.
What does it mean to Afro-Cubans when the first Black U.S. President ever in history visits them?
Obama’s visit gives rise to diplomatic relations between Cuba and the United States. People in both countries hope that the relationship reestablished between the two governments will help to boost their political, social and economic progress. Moreover, some people believe that it will help to improve the lives of black Cubans.
Cuba is far from being racism-free, it started when colonists brought blacks to the island in chains as slaves, and still black Cubans face a lot of backsets and prejudices there. Just like in the U.S. in Cuba as long as you have a black skin, you are always marginalized. Afro-Cuban descents, for example, face racial discrimination in private restaurants and the only way some of them survive is through tips given by tourists.
Here’s what one of the black Cuban residents, Youlanda Mauri, who was asked about President Obama’s visit, said, “He’s black and in some moment of his life he must have realized that as an African-American he had to elevate his performance level because as a black person you have to work twice as hard to get the same result as a white, I identity a lot with him because of that.”
The only question is whether President Obama actually can help black Cubans in their fighting against racism or not? Well, considering the U.S. experience we can`t say it for sure. Nevertheless we sincerely wish our brothers and sisters on Cuba to be successful in their anti-racist efforts.