The dictatorship always reserves for itself the right to say, "Enough is enough," and come down like a ton of tobacco on anyone with the courage to oppose it — or more precisely, the courage to express their opposition, even with a common slogan. Since they live under a dictatorial police state able to show itself on every street corner, Cubans have no protections against the whims of those in charge.
No one is immune.
Two young Cubans, Maikel Bencomo Rojas and Rigoberto Zamora Rodríguez
fell victim to those whims earlier this month and this morning are waking up in the Castro gulag.
Zamora, 37, on May 2 was sentenced to 2 years in prison for "disrespecting the figure of Fidel Castro," (which I guess means the decaying dictator is, still drawing breath.)
Zamora and three other young Cubans had been detained in January after someone was heard yelling, "Abajo Fidel!" ("Down With Fidel!"), but only Zamora was prosecuted in tried — in secret, of course.
What Bencomo, 26, thinks about the dictatorship is literally written on his back with a tattoo declaring, "Abajo Fidel."
That's not allowed, according to a court in Havana that on May 7 sentenced Bencomo to 2 years in in prison. The court action — which took place with little public scrutiny allowed — culminated 7 months of harassment of Bencomo by the Cuban secret police because of his body art.
One of the surest indicators of the repressive nature of the Castro regime is the jailing of political prisoners. To illustrate that reality, Uncommon Sense each week profiles one prisoner. There also is a Political Prisoner archive on the right sidebar. To suggest a prisoner for a profile, send me an e-mail.
For profiles of imprisoned Cuban journalists and related information, read the March 18 Project.