Things That Matter

With The Help Of A Few Politicians, The White House Has Announced A Full Review Of U.S.-Cuba Policies

President Donald Trump’s administration has announced that several Obama-era Cuban policies are now up for review. One policy that could possibly be reversed is the ‘wet foot, dry foot‘ policy that Obama discontinued eight days before Trump took office. According to The Daily Caller, the Trump administration has been trying to figure out a way to start reviewing and changing parts of the policies Obama made with Cuba since February 2017. Now, with the urging of Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Republican Representative Mario Diaz-Balart, it has been confirmed that Cuba-U.S. policies are under full review. During a press briefing, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer cited Trump’s commitment “to an agenda of ensuring human rights for all citizens throughout the world.”

“We’ve been walking through all these issues with the president and his team, figuring out the right steps to take and when,” Rubio told El Nuevo Herald. “I am confident that President Trump will treat Cuba like the dictatorship it is and that our policy going forward will reflect the fact that it is not in the national interest of the United States for us to be doing business with the Cuban military.”

If Trump follows through with the review and implementation of the recommendations, there could be new restrictions on travel and trade but will not impact the thawing of diplomatic ties with the island nation. According to The Independent, we can expect a decision from the White House about Cuba in June.

People were quick to make jokes that Trump is really just trying to curry favor for a new Cuban hotel.


?

Like, seriously. The Trump Tower in Cuba joke was the joke du jour.


After all, nothing says Cuba like a giant gold tower in Havana, right?

Some lamented the likelihood of not being able to travel to Cuba.


“Recognizing the inherent right of Americans to travel to Cuba isn’t a concession to dictators, it is an expression of freedom,” Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake said in a statement. “It is Americans who are penalized by our travel ban, not the Cuban government.”

Some people are celebrating the announcement of a change in policy toward Cuba.


But many are just left confused about why Trump is putting his energy into Cuba right now.


READ: Cuban Refugees Will No Longer Benefit From ‘Wet Foot, Dry Foot’

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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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AOC Gets Under Ted Cruz’s Skin With Crack About His Mexican Getaway After He Accuses Her Of Pushing For ‘open borders’

Fierce

AOC Gets Under Ted Cruz’s Skin With Crack About His Mexican Getaway After He Accuses Her Of Pushing For ‘open borders’

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ted Cruz are at it again on Twitter. This time it’s about immigration policy. After recently traveling to the US-Mexican border to underline the recent rise in immigration, Cruz accused AOC of pushing for a “full open borders” policy.

And of course, AOC got him with some solid zingers.

AOC in turn hit back at Cruz for recently fleeing his home state of Texas during its power grid collapse to vacation in Cancún.

In response to Cruz’s attack, AOC suggested Mexico avoid allowing Cruz in the next time he attempts to vacation there. She also called on him to resign from office for his attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

“Ted, this is pretty rich coming from someone who fled their own home (and responsibilities) during an environmental crisis to cross the border and seek refuge in Mexico,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “Also you funded cages, expanded cages, and yet you’re complaining about cages. You have no policy, just puff.”

Ocasio-Cortez accused Republicans of hypocritically attacking the current administration’s detention of migrant children at the border after they supported President Donald Trump’s policy of separating migrant parents from their children.

Currently, Democrats like AOC are calling on Biden to impliment more liberal immigration policies.

Republicans have strongly expressed their dislike for the recent rise in migrants which has come as a result of Biden’s reversal of Trump’s most rigid border policies.

AOC is currently a co-sponsor of the Roadmap to Freedom resolution. The resolution calls on the Federal Government to develop and implement a Roadmap to Freedom “in order to overhaul the outdated immigration system in the United States that has gone without significant reform for decades, and to relieve the great human impact an unjust system bears on communities around the country.”

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