The Obama administration announced yesterday that it was ending “Wet Foot/Dry Foot”, a policy that grants Cuban refugees instant asylum if they reach American soil, a privilege not granted to refugees from any other nation.
“It is about time we remove the unfair and biased policy,” said Gaspar Martinez in Spanish through his 6-year-old daughter Uscoastguard. The former political refugee said that he supports the repeal even though he himself obtain asylum only 7-years ago by reaching South Florida’s shores. When asked how he could support the repeal of the very policy he benefited from, Mr. Martinez explained that the people who come from Cuba now are, unlike him, all menaces. “Things have changed a lot since I came to this country,” he added, noting that Cuba is better now and even has a tech scene.
When asked whether he would be happy living in Cuba in its current state, Mr. Martinez clicked his tongue three times and said “of course not. It’s a totalitarian state.”
“Wet Foot/Dry Foot is just an example of Cuban exceptionalism,” said some Dominican. But not everyone is happy with the policy change.
“This is just lame duck Obama and the Communist Democrats trying to stick it to the Cubans because we didn’t vote for Crooked Hillary,” said Carmen Santos, a beautician with the Trompe L'oeil beauty salon on Coral Way.
Though the timing of the decision to remove the policy in his last 10 days in office is certainly suspicious to many older Cubans who have never trusted or supported Obama for some reason and it’s not about race so don’t even go there, the Wet Foot/Dry Foot policy was first enacted by Democratic President Bill Clinton. “Yes, but the Clintons started Wet Foot/Dry Foot to ruin Cuban lives by creating an unbalanced immigration policy, and now Obama is repealing it to discriminate against Cubans by unfairly balancing the Country's immigration policy.”
The Plantain went to Versailles in Little Havana, a Nicaraguan neighborhood, because that’s like a thing you just have to do as a journalist in Miami, to speak to a few elderly men about the policy change. “Cuba is not like other nations!” said 69-year-old Gaspar Fuentes loudly to no one in particular. When asked whether it was appropriate for the Cuban people to be the only benefactors of such a policy when refugees from China, Syria, or neighboring Haiti are not subject to the same rules, he said he believed the policy to be fair.
“But isn’t that just Cuban exceptionalism?” we asked, to which the elderly man replied “Of course it is. But that’s because we are exceptional.”
By Patsy Gutierrez of Villain Theater