Jay-Z, Beyonce hit sour note on Cuba

  • Article by: DALE McFEATTERS , Scripps Howard News Service
  • Updated: April 11, 2013 - 12:57 PM

Cuban hardliners in Congress demanded to know how Jay-Z and Beyonce got permission to go to Havana. Seriously, do we care?

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hermajestyApr. 11, 13 1:53 PM

The ban makes no sense. Americans travel freely to China, which is much more repressive than Cuba and could actually pose a military threat to the U.S. if it wanted to. I went there with a church group a couple of years ago, and I found a beautiful tropical island with friendly people and fantastic music and art, despite the poverty. Yes, things are rundown, but the government is gradually restoring the historic buildings, and some forms of private enterprise are allowed. Is Cuba paradise? Definitely not, but it isn't hell on earth, either.

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bannedmuggsApr. 11, 13 3:18 PM

Simple - favors from their pal, Obama. He doesn't care about laws when it comes to himself and his rich friends.

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bannedmuggsApr. 11, 13 3:20 PM

The ban makes no sense. Americans travel freely to China, which is much more repressive than Cuba and could actually pose a military threat to the U.S. if it wanted to. I went there with a church group a couple of years ago, and I found a beautiful tropical island with friendly people and fantastic music and art, despite the poverty. Yes, things are rundown, but the government is gradually restoring the historic buildings, and some forms of private enterprise are allowed. Is Cuba paradise? Definitely not, but it isn't hell on earth, either. ================================== hermajesty - I agree with you on China and I agree that there's a double standard, but there are well documented and continuing human rights abusing by the Castro brothers. Unfortunately for Cuba its not a huge market for the US like China is but that doesn't mean the ban is bad.

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hermajestyApr. 11, 13 3:41 PM

bannedmugs:"but there are well documented and continuing human rights abusing by the Castro brothers."--There are documented and continuing human rights abuses all over the world, and yet Americans are allowed to travel to every other country on earth. Americans were never banned from traveling to Guatemala, Haiti, or El Salvador, but during the 1980s, those countries were far worse abusers of human rights (massacres of entire villages, literally hundreds of people a month being tortured and murdered and left on roadsides, priests and nuns murdered for protesting these abuses) than Cuba ever was. If Florida weren't a swing voting state, you wouldn't have both Democratic and Republican presidents upholding the travel bans.

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hawkeye56379Apr. 11, 13 5:05 PM

If it weren't for the ridiculous travel ban, Cuba would probably be much more democratic than it is now. Exposure to the outside world has gone a long way towards promoting freedom in other Communist or formerly Communist countries.

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patsApr. 11, 13 5:57 PM

It is easy to go to Cuba and there is nothing to be afraid of for travelers. They need the money. Just recently, Cubans are able to own their own business. Another step forward. There are many travel companies that offer tours to Cuba from the US. It opens your eyes in only the way that travel can. The people are great, the history/architecture rich and don't even get me started on the music and dancing. Go and see the good, the bad and the ugly for yourself...but I have to say it is not ugly!

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pumiceApr. 11, 13 7:19 PM

Re: "Exposure to the outside world has gone a long way towards promoting freedom in other Communist or formerly Communist countries." Odd how the "American exceptionalism" crowd don't have much faith in our political and economic exceptionalism. (As demonstrated by the fact that their favored way to promote democracy is by military conquest and their favored way to promote capitalism is by looting other nations' resources and exploiting workers in other nations.

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boricuama26Apr. 11, 13 9:17 PM

It would be nice to travel back and forth to places like Cuba with no problem. HOWEVER Americans have to realize once you step foot out of America, things are NOT the same in other countries!! You are not free to do whatever you please. And if you say or do the wrong thing, you might get killed. This is a serious issue. This is reality people. // Americans are immigrants in other countries. Just like immigrants need green cards and visa's to get into America, other countries are no different! Its a double standard.

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goldengoph3rApr. 12, 13 3:44 AM

Dennis Rodman made a very publicized trip to North Korea, a country that regularly threatens the globe with nuclear war; apparently that's OK. We fought a war in Vietnam, in which 60,000 American lives were lost (along with over a million Vietnamese), but hey, you want to go there, no problem. Travel to Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, etcetera: no problem, go for it. But go to Cuba? No. Because of *one* man: Fidel Castro. You can't go to Cuba because of one man. To say this is ridiculous is redundant.

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thunderApr. 12, 1310:46 AM

It appears that 220 licenses for travel have been granted since the President reinstated the program in 2011. Why has no one (Republican lawmakers) written letters for justification on the other 219 people, couples or groups? What about the numbers of US citizens who "illegally" travel there? Why were Beyonce and Jay Z singled out? Politics trumps common sense again.

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