Why is Castro's Cuba Suddenly Pro-Gay?
“More than 1,000 gay, lesbian and transgender Cubans marched through Havana on Saturday,” reports Reuters, “proudly displaying their truest selves.”
This once-unthinkable display in Cuba was no less than its eighth annual “March Against Homophobia and Transphobia.” This one took on extra special meaning for 20 couples who “symbolically exchanged” wedding vows, even as same-sex marriage remains illegal in Cuba, but obviously not for long. If this can happen under the dictatorial nose of despots Fidel and Raul Castro, then it’s already permissible.
Gay Cubans erupted into a celebratory parade, banging conga drums and waving rainbow-colored banners. The special day is regularly celebrated just after May Day, the high holy day for the communist state.
One gleeful gay man called the celebration “a dream we never thought would have been possible.” A lesbian participant agreed: “In the interior of the country, you couldn’t even dream about an event like this.” She exchanged vows with her partner, and added: “It’s a unique event and surprising for gays who can show their faces without having to hide from anyone.”
That’s for sure. Castro’s Cuba once hauled off homosexuals to prisons and nuthouses. They were considered mad, dangerous perverts who needed to be isolated or dispatched from the island. Mere decades ago, this kind of event would not have been tolerated. The marchers would have been immediately handcuffed and beaten and carted to the loony bin.
Not anymore. There has been a fundamental transformation in Cuba.
If you’re surprised, you shouldn’t be. I’ve followed this for quite some time. I document it in my coming book, Takedown: From Communists to Progressives, How the Left Has Sabotaged Family and Marriage.
Why is the once-viciously “homophobic” Cuba suddenly embracing the gay agenda?
The ringleader is Mariela Castro, Fidel’s niece and daughter of current President Raul Castro. She serves in Cuba’s non-democratic National Assembly and heads the Cuban National Center for Sex Education. The communist-state-“trained sexologist” is a gay-rights zealot.
Mariela has been spearheading the gay agenda in Havana for several years, with an intriguing measure of assistance from the United States, specifically the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton’s State Department. She adores President Obama and has lavishly commended his support of gay marriage.
Mariela even claims that her uncle, the great gay-basher, actually favors same-sex marriage, “but he has not made it public.” She contends that he has personally “done some advocacy work” on “sexual orientation and gender identity.”
Really? One could chalk up Mariela’s personal crusade for gay marriage to an addiction to American sitcoms or social media, but what about this remarkable conversion by her uncle? Does it make any sense?
Yes, it does. There’s a more sinister factor at work here that explains Fidel’s newfound love for the gay agenda.
We must understand that there has been a two-century-long effort by the far left, from communists like Marx and Engels to early socialists like Charles Fourier, Robert Owen, Albert Brisbane, and many more radical leftists throughout the 20th century, from Frankfurt School cultural Marxists like Herbert Marcuse and Wilhelm Reich to ‘60s radicals like Kate Millett and even Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn and the Weather Underground, to fundamentally transform marriage and family -- with or without gays. In the Communist Manifesto, Marx and Engels wrote of the “abolition of the family.” Their destructive attacks on family and the institution of marriage were picked up by subsequent Marxists in the many decades thereafter. Fidel Castro was one of them.
As soon as Castro seized Cuba in 1959, he immediately began undermining the family. The worst blows came from a devastating assault on religion accompanied by a complete liberalization of divorce and abortion laws, which in turn generated an unprecedented explosion in Cuban divorce and abortion rates. In all, the cornerstone of Cuban society that was the family was annihilated. For decades now, Cuba has been plagued by some of the planet’s worst levels of divorce and abortion.
Fidel’s sudden ideological marriage to the current gay agenda should be interpreted within this context; likewise for communists generally. For communists, from Cuba to (here at home) Communist Party USA and its house organ, People’s World, today’s gay agenda has become a matter of faith. They’re unequivocally on board.
In gay marriage, communists have finally found their long-awaited tool, their Trojan horse, to take down marriage and family. Even more delicious to them, gay marriage offers a magnificent opportunity to further excoriate the one enemy they have always hated most: religion. And most stunningly perfect of all, gay marriage is accepted by the mainstream -- by non-communists. Thus, for the first time ever, communists have found a culturally accepted vehicle to attack family and religion. In the past, communists never had public support for any of their insane ideas for undermining family and marriage. Now, at long last, they have one, and they are beside themselves in amazement and joy. The masses are at long last with them.
For a onetime devout atheistic communist like Fidel Castro, gay marriage is a great blessing. For Cuba’s Marxist-Leninist tyrant, faced with a conflict between his penchant for persecuting the family/marriage and for persecuting gay people, the communist war on traditional morality and faith and family easily wins out, thus dictating an embrace of gay marriage. Communists will do whatever they need to destroy the family. Even in Castro’s Cuba, then, gay marriage will work nicely for the larger purpose.
Fidel no doubt relishes the prospect of yet more children raised in yet more Cuban homes lacking a mom or a dad. Gay marriage further perpetuates his longtime goal of the state as mother or father.
Karl Marx had characterized the “abolition of the family” as revolutionary, as “the most radical rupture with traditional relations.” Fidel’s niece, Mariela, gets it. She speaks of this new cause as “revolutionary.” It will smash the “patriarchal family” that old Marxist-feminist forerunners like Kate Millett and Betty Freidan and Alexandra Kollontai had looked to demolish. As Mariela notes, gay marriage for Cuba is “hugely important.”
It certainly is. And Mariela and her tyrant uncle are ecstatic to see that millions of Americans are -- finally -- cheering them on. At long last, they’re on the same side.
Paul Kengor, Ph.D., is the bestselling author of over a dozen books, including The Communist: Frank Marshall Davis, the Untold Story of Barack Obama’s Mentor and Dupes: How America’s Adversaries Have Manipulated Progressives for a Century. His next book, forthcoming from WND Books, is Takedown: From Communists to Progressives, How the Left Has Sabotaged Family and Marriage.