Jimmy Roque Martinez, on the occasion of International Workers Day on May 1, wrote a very fine column "The Earth Trembles in Cuba"
on the Havana Times website, one of the few outlets for independent writing from Cuba.
Thousands of workers marched across the Plaza of the Revolution in “support” of the Cuban Revolution and its leaders.
The Cuban working class is one of the few in the world that does not have to fight for better working conditions. They must only show their gratitude and obedience to maintain the gains achieved.
This International Workers Day the Cuban working class jubilantly celebrated several victories achieved. For example:
- Having a wage labor system.
- That this wage is not even sufficient to feed themselves.
- That they do not own the means of production, although the state says otherwise.
- That they have a union they supports their employers and not them as a working class
- That their union federation supports the massive layoffs of state employees.
- That the retirement age was increased by five years with the support of the CTC.
- That a labor law passed four months ago, still unknown in its final form, eliminated the right to employment.
- That they will receive a measly pension.
May Day is definitely not a day of celebration for the Cuban working class. There are many rights to fight for, much exploitation to eliminate.
The earth trembled in Havana, but with demagoguery, injustice and the exploitation of workers in the name of a nonexistent socialism and the strengthening of capitalism.