Abused

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We keep a wary eye out for anyone who might approach our children lecherously, but few think to maintain the same vigilance in the face of the child abuse that focuses on minds rather than bodies.  The distortion of Cuban education to put ideology above all has reached an alarming point, even for those of us who were once taught by the same methods.  Simply looking at a textbook, or reviewing the system for grading students, we can see that doctrine is gaining ground to the detriment of knowledge.  In my son’s classroom, six photos of The Olive-Green Leader adorn the walls, while on his report card he is graded on his participation in political and patriotic activities.

I am reminded of my own time as a Little Pioneer, when I would read a communique or shout slogans, and still, today, I cannot overcome the feeling of having been raped.  But the feeling is so much stronger when I see that Teo, at thirteen, has already learned which opinions he shouldn’t express at school to avoid problems.  And to find that my own mask has now been extended to the face of my son, is more painful by far than the feeling that I myself was once the target of this same kind of rape.

13 thoughts on “Abused

  1. Che and Anónimo:

    You are so wrong… I’m a teacher in social studies and history in the upper secondary school in Sweden, so I know what I’m talking about. In the strong liberal tradition of our school-system, we do not sing anthems, we teach the students to think critically and to be questioning. Actually, it is required for higher grades.

    And che, the apologies you make for the “sound” principles of Marxism/Leninism are so common these days. They really reveal the how desperate the situation for this inhuman ideology has become. It’s never the car’s fault, always the driver’s. The idea of socialism and liberalism as competing ideologies is long dead. It ended the day the Soviet Union collapsed and showed the world it’s ugly insides.

  2. If all education systems are the same, then surely there would be no problem with competing education systems being allowed to operate in Cuba, so Yoani could have a choice of where to send her child. If they’re all the same, why not let the Catholic Church open some parochial schools?

  3. Noah is absolutely right.

    What Yoani is feeling she would feel no matter what country she would be living in. Come to “the land of the free” and it would be the same–just different pictures on the wall.

    Yoani, it is important that you keep up the struggle but don’t get side tracked into believing that an answer lies in another system elsewhere.

    The sound principles of Marxism/Leninism have been corrupted by others for their own use. Those principles should be strictly adhered to for a better society.

  4. Hey,

    All education systems are the same, which is to mean that they program the kids. All education system work the same in the way that they teach kids to take orders no matter if they agree with them or not. All education systems work the same, some are just better masked than other. The worse the mask the better, not the worst! Education should be about critical thinking not giving orders but that isn’t the case. You aren’t taught how to think, but what to think. You are taught to agree with their theories and not question them. It’s the same anywhere you go. You sing the anthem in any classroom.

    Cheers.

    Noah

  5. All education systems are the same, which is to mean that they program the kids. All education system work the same in the way that they teach kids to take orders no matter if they agree with them or not. All education systems work the same, some are just better masked than other. The worse the mask the better, not the worst! Education should be about critical thinking not giving orders but that isn’t the case. You aren’t taught how to think, but what to think. You are taught to agree with their theories and not question them. It’s the same anywhere you go. You sing the anthem in any classroom.

  6. Yoani, thanks for your blog from within the grasp of a cruel represive Dictatorship the Castro’s have masterminded. Indoctrination is not education,so teach your child values at home. Your a leader and not a follower and the reason you are so popular. We enjoy your insightful post and look foward everday to see what you pen. If more people had your courage the Castro’s long ago whould have been with out a job. Keep up the great work.

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  9. Yoani, you are a good role model for your son. I, who grew up amongst bigotry, hatred and prejudice in Northern Ireland, also learnt from bitter experience why it is best not to express one’s true opinions at school. But I hope that you and your family will be able to look forward to a softening of attitudes in the future, such as what I am experiencing now. Yoani, I am sure that your son has benefited greatly from your strength of character and commitment to the truth.

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