Sunday, April 29, 2007
One Month and Counting
Today marks the one month's anniversary of the inauguration of this blog. It is no exaggeration to say that it is already required reading for all other Cuban-American bloggers, fulfilling thereby its mission as the Review of Cuban-American Blogs. I really could not expect or ask for more, although it has in fact achieved much more. The near unanimous hostility, open or concealed, with which it has been met by other Cuban bloggers, anxious to maintain "unity" by hoeing to the Prieto-Gómez line, and the failure, with a couple of honorable exceptions, to link to this blog or even to provide a link in posts attacking it, have, we think, been important elements in its success; for every attempt to marginalize us has resulted in greater curiosity about us and hence more and more visitors every day.
What pleases us most of all is that this blog has become a vehicle for the disaffected to have their say without fear of expulsion because their opinions do not align perfectly with the blog owner's. Many are asserting here, for the first time, their right to "think and speak without hypocrisy," as Martí defined freedom. Many more less intrepid have nonetheless communicated to us in their e-mails the dissatisfaction which they felt with the status quo ante and their relief to have an independent voice confronting forthrightly and with no quarter the "disparates" (English needs that word) of Val & Company. To all who have encouraged us in this work and more than encouraged us, we reiterate our thanks and ask them to make their support public, so as to impress on their colleagues that there is, in fact, no united front among Cuban bloggers and no party line.
We are sure — in fact, in many cases, we know for sure — that this blog receives more visitors in a day than most "older" Cuban blogs do in a week, and this I attribute to the fact that it does not define itself in relation to the other blogs but charts its own course and journeys to wherever it wants. Only one other Cuban-American blog does the same — Killcastro and Charlie Bravo's. Those who read both our blogs know that our approaches and even our opinions differ in incidentals and even essentials, but one thing which we do have in common which overrides all differences, is our fierce independence and fear of no one and nothing. While our other fellow Cuban bloggers are afraid to define themselves on issues such as Posada, preferring rather to say nothing or even embrace the position of The Miami Herald, and while they are constantly looking over their shoulders to see if non-Cuban critics are pleased with them, and are taken aback, indeed, terror-stricken if one looks askance at them, we prefer to count our victories by the enemies we make not the "friends" whose loyalty we buy with silence or complicity.
And so, we are very happy and pleased to celebrate this milestone. It will be the first of many to come, but it will always hold for us fond memories and much inspiration. To Val Prieto, in particular, we owe a great debt which we have already acknowledged here but which we will always be pleased to acknowledge anywhere; it is thanks to his arbitrariness and injustice that this blog was born as an answer to it. Indeed, he even ordained the exact day and minute of our birth as a blogger. Val may not be the undisputed "father" of all Cuban-American bloggers (as he claims), but he is certainly our illegitimate "blog father." He made us and I hope he's at least proud. Can one be proud and eat one's own guts at the same time?