Sunday, December 28, 2014

Performance art as a test for free speech in Cuba

I also demand...
Rosa María Payá Acevedo... "I also demand" ... "Plebiscite Cuba"
Tania Bruguera, is an internationally recognized installation and performance artist. She is also the daughter of Miguel Bruguera, "a Cuban Political Advisor to the Cuban Embassy in Paris and ambassador to Lebanon and Panama." She is a daughter of the nomenklatura. This may provide some protection for a dissenting voice.

Five years ago in April of 2009 she organized a performance art piece that sparked a debate over free speech in Cuba outside of the island and she is at it again.

This time she is moving her performance art piece to the Plaza of the Revolution and has scheduled it for December 30, 2014 at 3:00pm and has also organized a virtual campaign through Facebook with the hashtag #YoTambienExijo (#ITooDemand) that is also being promoted by Yoani Sanchez through her twitter and online news publication 14 y Medio. This is an open invitation made by Tania which states:
The idea is go to the Plaza the 30th of December at 3pm sharp to talk and peacefully converse about what is worrying us in these moments. To be together letting others know what we think and why, in an atmosphere of tolerance and respect. 

Let there be diversity of opinions and topics to talk and discuss together. We do not have an agenda or seek a particular ideological line: we just want people to come, come those who so far have not found a place to share their doubts or experiences or do not feel represented by alternative spaces that have already been created.
 Meanwhile in Miami to draw further attention to this performance art piece being held in Havana a second one is planned to be held outside the Freedom Tower in Downtown Miami.An open microphone where in the same spirit described above individuals can come and speak their minds for one minute.

It is being organized by Rosa María Payá Acevedo who has adopted the hashtag #YoTambienExijo (#ITooDemand) and added a second hash tag #PLEBISCITOCUBA (#PlebisciteCuba).

On Tuesday, December 30 at 3:00pm keep an eye out for these acts of performance art that are also a test for free speech and the totalitarian security apparatus in Cuba.

If I have the opportunity to attend on Tuesday this is what I would say:
"Four things have to take place for Cuba to begin the transition to democracy and national reconciliation: 1. Free and internationally supervised free elections need to be held in Cuba after the Constitution is changed so that the Communist Party monopoly is ended and rights are respected. 2. All political prisoners need to be freed. 3. An international and transparent investigation needs to be carried out into the deaths of Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas and Harold Cepero. 4. The individuals in the chain of command that ordered and carried out the shootdown of two Brothers to the Rescue planes on February 24, 1996 and the sinking of the "13 de Marzo" tugboat on July 13, 1994 need to be held accountable before a court of law." Finally, I would recommend that all representatives of organizations who are present consider signing the Democracy Accord.
Needless to say that you can say a lot in just one minute when you put your mind to it.

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