In the motherhood Hall of Fame there is one special section for moms who make their kids feel guilty, shaming them into doing things they don’t want to do. Honorable mention to all the Jewish moms out there. Cuban moms have a special knack for guilt inducing diatribes with all the drama of the worst novela on Telemundo.
I will explain in the most Cuban mom way why Marco is a disappointment. (I’m not old enough to be his mother) It appears he has not been sufficiently shamed for not living up to his potential. I’m going to draw down on the classist psychodrama that is our community and explain where and how I think Marco ended up the ditch of human existence that he is.
Let us explore classism a little and why the effort to be accepted by a certain class of Cubans has Marco and other of my people (usually working class Gen X) lost, feeling like we don’t fit in, it creates what I call wannabe syndrome. I couldn’t understand why my bestie’s mom said out loud that they were “too good” for this neighborhood, or why when her dad opened his private practice and my mom started cleaning the office we couldn’t hang out any more. My dad figured out why pretty quickly and asked my mom to quit, and told me to get better friends. His contention was just because people have more money they are no better than us. My heart still hurts a little for my friends who didn’t have a dad like mine. One friend in particular that I’m thinking about was suffering so bad from wannabe syndrome he ended up doing time for pharmaceutical sales-you know the powdery variety. The money drives the class structure.
I can see it in Marco, he finally thought he’d proven himself to the upper crust Cubans, the bosses of society that he’d made it. He doesn’t sell the powdery pharmaceutical, he peddles legislation. As such he’s become a shape shifting chameleon he seems to have no sense of self. (is this what they mean by lizard people?) He accused one of the most honorable men in politics, Bill Nelson of cheating in an election in 2018 when he requested a recount. We told everyone this was the warm up for 2020, we were right. He approves of and encourages political violence, while trying to promote himself as the arbiter of human rights in the Senate. Maybe Marco entered politics before he figured out where he fit in in this crazy mixed up community that is the Cuban diaspora, maybe it’s the worst case of wannabe syndrome ever I don’t know, I do know he shouldn’t be in politics. It’s not unusual to have an identity crisis, I’ve had many, not Cuban enough, and too Cuban, wannabe syndrome is not terminal. Finally, I’m happy to be me.
If you look at others like the Diaz-Balarts you can understand how they came to believe what they do. Theirs is a pedigree that leads right back to Batista. Others by their family or business associations before they came here. Some rebuilt everything they had after Castro while living in denial about pre 59 Cuba. Others like my family came and went from Cuba and Spain many times until finally settling in Tampa and Key West. I’ve written before how my grandparents warned us of certain types of politicians and the messages they send. I see this danger in Marco, he’s become just another political opportunist who attaches himself to whomever the Republican of the moment is. Another Cuban who allows himself to be the face of the most racist political movement in modern time. See they cannot be racist-look at all the Cubans (we’ll talk about Cuban Jim Crow later). It’s time for a reckoning in this state, in this country, for my people, I for one will not contribute to the destruction of democracy in this country. Marco doesn’t seem to care, that’s the reason we must end his political career.