[freedomtowernight_edited.jpg] 26th Parallel: Youthful Activism

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Youthful Activism

From the Herald series The Cuba Puzzle (gotta give the Herald credit for a good series so far) comes this from Diane Cabrera of Raices de Esperanza:
Exiles Are Fighting For The Same Thing

Miami-born Diane Cabrera visited Cuba as a teenager, but what she knows about her heritage she learned from her parents -- Mariel refugees who arrived in Florida in 1980. Today, Cabrera, 24, is among a younger breed of Cuban-American activists in Miami-Dade working to bring about change on the island, where their parents were born. ''I grew up in a very Cuban home,'' she said, but she said her political fervor was not ignited until she went away to college at Georgetown University in Washington.

''All of a sudden, I was a minority and I began to feel proud to be Cuban,'' she said. She hung a 1950s-vintage travel poster of Cuba in her dorm room, she said. The poster is still with her, now hanging in the office of Directorio Democratico, which fights for human rights and democracy in Cuba. She is a spokeswoman for the group.

She also is administrator of Raices de Esperanza, or Roots of Hope, a network of young Cubans.

Cabrera doesn't like to be classified as a hard-liner or a moderate in her fight. ''I think, ultimately, all exiles are fighting for the same thing: a free Cuba,'' she said.



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