Our family came from Havana, a beautiful city that some have called a tropical paradise.
My brothers and I came to Miami on a Pan American flight and were taken to a campground that the Pedro Pan organizers had set up in Kendall, near where Town & Country Mall now stands. We were there for about two weeks before being sent to Albuquerque, N.M., where we were taken in by the family of Dr. Eugene Purtell.
In 1998, the cultural climate in Cuba wasn't exactly conducive to artistic freedom. While a thriving underground music scene did exist, official radio and television channels were notoriously selective, only airing artists who echoed the Communist Party line.
The following is a brief excerpt from a new feature article written by Jean Friedman-Rudovsky. The article appears today in the three South Florida county editions of the New Times. The excerpt below is reprinted with permission. Read the entire article by picking up the current issue at a local newsstand or by clicking on the link to the New Times website at the end of the excerpt.
Seven or eight years ago, during a sociology class at Miami-Dade College, the professor asked us to write a sociological history of our lives. It was the first time I thought long and hard about my life in the scheme of history, about the chain of events that brought me to my life in Miami as a Cuban-American.
For people of my generation, you simply could not avoid getting a crash course on Cuban politics and the dream of a free Cuba. The reason we are here. We are here because of him. Because of Fidel.
Back from his recent trip to Havana, rapper Jay-Z quickly released a new song, Open Letter, in which he not only addresses controversy about the trip but speaks his mind in a way that is likely to stir up some of the deep passions Americans have toward Cuba and the communist island's tumultuous relationship with the United States.
Inspiring millions of virtual fans with heartfelt dispatches and persistent calls for greater political freedom, blogger Yoani Sanchez is the most visible symbol of both sweeping change inside Cuba and the modern power of social media to crack some of the world's most closed societies.
After nearly 43 years, John Dorschner has left The Miami Herald, and he will be sorely missed around here.
John's wry manner, and his considerable chops, both in reporting and in voice, have made him the perfect newspaper-to-radio journalist since we began the WLRN-Miami Herald News cooperation a decade ago.
The death of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is an especially tough blow for Cuba, whose feeble state-run economy has been propped up for more than a decade with Venezuelan oil shipments and other subsidies.
The Castro government has declared three days of mourning, calling Chavez "a son" of Cuba, but privately Cubans are quietly fretting about the potential loss of billions in trade and the threat of a new economic crisis.
HEADED FOR THE BLACK LIST: The Latin American School of Medicine is the world's largest medical school. Republicans in the Florida Legislature want to make sure that American graduates of the Cuban school cannot get Florida medical licenses.