Haiti Brings Former Adversaries Together…

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…to work for healing and reconstruction.

[picapp align=”none” wrap=”false” link=”term=presidents+bush%2c+obama+and+clinton&iid=7557906″ src=”f/a/e/e/Obama_With_Former_54a6.jpg?adImageId=9101983&imageId=7557906″ width=”380″ height=”445″ /]
WASHINGTON – JANUARY 16: US President Barack Obama (L) former President Bill Clinton (C) and former President George W. Bush (R) walk to the Rose Garden to speak about relief for Haiti on January 16, 2010 in Washington DC. President Obama spoke about how the American people can help in the recovery and rebuilding effort going forward in Haiti. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

I’m sure Rush, Beck, et al, will find a way to demean this humane gesture.

Mark your “Canlendars”

Image by Society for Design Administration/Canstruction
Image by Society for Design Administration/Canstruction

Canstruction is coming soon to:

the Winter Garden of the World Financial Center, 220 Vesey Street and the West Side Highway. All structures will be on view from November 12 – November 22, from 7am – 11pm. The exhibition will be open Monday through Sunday.

What is Canstruction, you ask?

Canstruction® is an international charity competition where architects, engineers, contractors and students they mentor, compete to design and build giant structures made entirely from full cans of food. At the close of the competition all of the food from the New York City competition will be donated to City Harvest.

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Cubans now Welcomed in Cuba’s Resorts

Some inherent rights take five decades to be granted in Cuba. The right to stay at a modern hotel in a national tourist attraction by Cuban citizens is just one of them. I personally witness this form of apartheid when I visited Cuba a number of years ago. I could stay at a fancy hotel in the center of Havana, eat a sumptuous meal at one of its restaurants and take in a show. My cousins who were still living, and working and sacrificing in Cuba, could not.

Varadero Beach, Cuba. (Image by Nick Miroff for NPR)
Varadero Beach, Cuba. (Image by Nick Miroff for NPR)

That seems to be changing by decree from above. I suspect that the reason might have everything to do do with financial calculus and zero to do with citizen’s rights or humanitarian considerations.

NPR’s Nick Miroff has the full story from Havana:

Cuba’s President Raul Castro put an end last year to the country’s so-called tourism apartheid that banned ordinary Cubans from staying at tourist hotels.

The change has brought something new this summer to the island’s all-inclusive resorts: Cuban tourists.

With 12 miles of white sand beaches and more than 50 hotels, Varadero is one of the largest resorts in the Caribbean. Foreign companies partner with the Cuban government to run the place, and it’s a bit like Cancun without the American college kids.

Varadero is still off-limits to American tourists under U.S. law, and for years it was pretty much that way for Cubans, too. Cuban workers cleaned the hotel rooms and staffed the restaurants, but the island’s communist authorities wouldn’t let them check in as guests.

That policy ended with reforms initiated by Raul Castro, who succeeded his ailing brother, Fidel.

Now, dozens of tour buses packed with Cuban vacationers are pouring daily into Varadero. For less than $200 per person, Cubans can buy a weeklong, all-inclusive package and finally claim their places in the sand alongside budget-minded Europeans and Canadians.

Great!

Cubans are still waiting, after 50 years, for the granting of other simple human rights, like freedom of assembly, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom to travel abroad…

They’re still waiting for just plain freedom.

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