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Not To Be Dramatic, Pero Like… Cubans Need To Have More Sex Or We’ll Go Extinct

Guys, please do not freak out, but some* projections say that Cubans could be dying out. That’s right: The most important and beautiful and cutest group of people on this planet could go the way of the majestic mastodon.

*one


According to ForesightCuba, a project that gathers and presents information about the current state of Cuba in order to “define a vision for the future of Cuba,” demographic projections indicate that various factors, including low birth rate, may lead to the “extinction of the Cuban nation”:


If we do not introduce effective policies for young people to want to return to Cuba and start bearing children, the population of Cuba at the end of the century will be between 3.8 and 7.6 million. In addition between 42 and 60% of the population will be 60 and over.

If we get there, we will have consolidated the process of extinction of the Cuban nation. Process that started in 1959. (emphasis theirs)


Obviously, with the U.S. relaxing its trade embargo and easing travel restrictions to Cuba, this is all in a state of extreme flux. Things are changing and will continue to change for the island’s citizens in sweeping, major ways.

The report’s analysis, which openly takes a negative view of Fidel Castro’s regime, cites factors such as a pessimistic view of the future (and, thus, a disinclination to marry and have children), a lack of incentive and motivation to innovate under socialist rule, and deteriorating infrastructure as reasons that Cuba’s population is not replenishing.

The report is interesting not just because of its sort of ~*shockingly clickbaitastic*~ takeaway, but also because of its subtext: What, after all, defines the Cuban-ness at risk of going extinct?

If replenishing that population means, as the report suggests, encouraging young Cubans to “return” to the island and repopulate, wouldn’t that mean that there already exists a thriving and replenishing population of Cubans outside of Cuba? Does our Cuban-ness fade the longer we’re in the U.S.? And how can young Cubans “return” to a place many of us have never been to? And who is gonna pay me to “move back” and set up Mitú’s Havana outpost (please)?


READ: Hiiii Khloe, How’s Your Cuba Trip Going? Can We Chat About Something For A Sec?

My fellow Qban QTs: Did this inspire to go, like. Make lots of Cuban babies and make demand for Augustín Reyes skyrocket?

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

In Cuba, Where Food Is Unreliable, Savvy Cooks Have Turned to Facebook to Share Recipes

Culture

In Cuba, Where Food Is Unreliable, Savvy Cooks Have Turned to Facebook to Share Recipes

Photo via Getty Images

COVID-19 hasn’t been easy for Cubans. Not only have Cubans been physically affected by the virus like the rest of the world, but the drop in the island’s gross domestic product has stymied local economic productivity. The island can no longer look to tourism to add to their GDP.

Because of this drop in GDP, food shortages on the island have become more severe than in recent memory. And Cuban cooks are feeling the effects.

Cubans must stand in line for hours at markets with no guarantees that the ingredients that they want will be available.

This way of living is especially hard for Cuban cooks, like 39-year-old Yuliet Colón. For Colón, cooking is both a creative expression and a stress reliever. “The kitchen is my happy place, where I am calmer and I feel better,” she recently revealed to the Associated Press.

Yuliet Colón is one of the creators of a Facebook page called Recetas del Corazón that has changed the cooking game for thousands of Cubans.

Now, thanks to Colón and other curious and generous Cuban cooks like her, Recipes from the Heart is now 12,000 members strong.

The goal of the page is to help struggling Cuban cooks cope with food shortages. Members of the page share creative recipes, tips, and food substitutions. Launched in June of 2020, the page was an instant success. Its success proves that Cubans have been desperate to find ways to adapt their cooking to the post-COVID-era.

To AP News, Yuliet Colón laments about the lack of rice, beans, cheese, fruit, and, most of all, eggs. “What I like the most is making desserts, but now it’s hard to get eggs, milk or flour,” she revealed.

The brightside is, however, that Cuban cooks are finally able to share food-related tips and tricks with each other on a much larger scale than they were before the internet became more widespread in the country.

Now that many Cubans have access to communication apps like Facebook and WhatsApp, they can now connect with one another and make the most of what they have–however little that may be.

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This Is How Cuba Is Developing Its Own COVID Vaccine When It Can Barely Get Daily Necessities To The Island

Things That Matter

This Is How Cuba Is Developing Its Own COVID Vaccine When It Can Barely Get Daily Necessities To The Island

Cuba has long been a biotech juggernaut in the Caribbean. When health crises emerge around the globe or there’s a medical disaster, Cuba is often one of the first nation’s to send medical staff and emergency workers to help. Its medical team has become part of the country’s diplomacy.

But the Coronavirus pandemic has brought economic devastation to a country already facing severe economic issues. Many on the island struggle to even find daily necessities like Tylenol or Band-Aids yet the Cuban government is just steps away from developing its own vaccine against COVID-19. How is this possible?

Cuban researches are making their own Coronavirus vaccine and seeing great results.

Currently on the island, there are five vaccine candidates in development, with two already in late-stage trials. Cuban officials say they’re developing cheap and easy-to-store serums. They are able to last at room temperature for weeks, and in long-term storage as high as 46.4 degrees, potentially making them a viable option for low-income, tropical countries that have been pushed aside by bigger, wealthier nations in the international race for coronavirus vaccines.

If they’re successful and developing and rolling out the vaccine, Cuba – a country where the average scientific researcher earns about $250 a month — could be among the first nations in the world to reach herd immunity, putting it in a position to lure vaccine tourists and to export surpluses of what officials claim could reach 100 million doses by year’s end.

If they pull this off, it would be a big win for the communist government.

Achieving success would be an against-the-odds feat of medical science and a public relations win for the isolated country of 11 million people. Cuba was just added back to the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism in the final days of the Trump administration.

It could also make Cuba the pharmacist for nations lumped by Washington into the so-called “Axis of Evil.” Countries like Iran and Venezuela have already inked vaccine deals with Havana. Iran has even agreed to host a Phase 3 trial of one of Cuba’s most promising candidates — Soberana 2 — as part of a technology transfer agreement that could see millions of doses manufactured in Iran.

“We have great confidence in Cuban medical science and biotechnology,” Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza told The Washington Post this week. “It will not only be fundamental for Venezuela, but for the Americas. It will be the true solution for our people.”

So how is Cuba managing to pull this off despite all the challenges they face?

Cuba is an authoritarian, one-party state with strict controls on everything from free speech and political activism to social media and LGBTQ rights. But the island has always invested heavily in education and healthcare, which has led to an unusually sophisticated biotechnology industry for a small developing country, with at least 31 research companies and 62 factories with over 20,000 workers.

Should Cuba’s vaccines succeed, its researchers will have overcome even more hurdles than their peers in Western labs — including shortages of equipment, spare parts and other supplies, due in part to U.S. sanctions

A successful vaccine could also become a vital new source of revenue for Cuba, which has been suffering a brutal economic crisis that has citizens waiting hours in line to buy scarce food, soap and toothpaste. The economy worsened under Trump-era sanctions that tightened the long-standing U.S. economic embargo of Cuba by curbing remittances, scaling back U.S. flights, ending cruise ship passenger traffic and further complicating Cuba’s access to the global financial system. President Biden has called for a possible return to Obama-era policies, but he has made no such moves yet.

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