Cuban state television on Sunday apologized to the audience “for the mutilation” of a scene from the movie “Love, Simon” in which the two young gay protagonists kissed and announced that they will reissue the production “in full.”
The film was broadcast yesterday Saturday and the omission of the kiss scene immediately provoked criticism and protests on social networks by LGTBI activists, who called the group to concentrate and kiss this Sunday before the headquarters of the Cuban Institute of Radio and Television (ICRT) in Havana.
In a statement collected by the official media, the Cuban Television described as “error” the omission of the scene and advanced that “the corresponding analysis is made, because the omission does not respond to homophobic positions of the ICRT and its directors of the TVC, as some have referred on social networks. “
“The inclusive vision of Cuban society bids daily against cultural stereotypes. It is everyone’s duty to walk on the side of the righteous and move forward as the country that constitutionally recognizes ‘the cult of Cubans to the full dignity of man'”, concludes the note .
FLAGS AND KISSES
At least two of the activists who had called the “kiss” in front of the ICRT reported on social networks that they had suffered telephone threats, allegedly from State Security, to abort the protest.
In the call, they had asked to carry LGTBI flags “and many kisses” but “no posters or slogans that distort the meaning of the action.”
“If something were to be requested, it would be the resignation of the censer, a public apology and the full retransmission of the film,” activist Yadiel Cepero wrote on Facebook, one of those who reported receiving pressure calls.
Subsequently, after making public the note of apology of Cuban Television, the young man considered that the statement “responds to the three demands” of the group and that his message “was heard loud and clear.”
Therefore, he announced the cancellation of the “public kiss”, asked to administer “this little victory with wisdom” and requested “those who saw in the kiss the opportunity to place agendas with objectives other than those of LGTBI citizens, refrain from generating provocations at the time and place set for the public kiss “.
The LGTBI collective has been gaining visibility during the last decade in Cuba, where in the first years after the triumph of the Revolution (1959) homosexuals were persecuted and sent to work camps called Military Units for Production Aid (UMAP) , which is considered one of the darkest chapters in the recent history of the island.
In May of last year, gay rights activists staged in Havana the first unauthorized demonstration held in Cuba in decades that led to clashes between the participants and the Cuban police.
Dozens of people paraded without obstacles and without incidents from the Central Park and toured the Paseo del Prado in the capital, but the police did not allow them to continue advancing when they wanted to continue the march through the famous Malecon, which motivated the clashes and temporary detention of several activists.
This demonstration was convened after the Government canceled, with the initial justification of the economic crisis that plagues the country, the traditional “conga” against homophobia sponsored by the official National Center for Sex Education (Cenesex), led by the deputy and sexologist Mariela Castro, daughter of former president Raúl Castro.
After initially justifying the suspension referring to the economic problems of the island, Cenesex offered a second version and said that the “conga” would have been used for destabilizing purposes by the “counterrevolution”, although he did not specify how.
WITHOUT HOMOSEXUAL MARRIAGE
The cancellation of the “conga” was the straw that filled the vessel for the collective, which accumulated a growing malaise by the withdrawal of a provision that opened the doors to gay marriage in the new Constitution approved last year.
The initial draft of the Magna Carta proposed to change the definition of marriage, replacing “the union between a man and a woman” with “the union between two persons with legal capacity to do so.”
The issue was one of the most controversial in the popular debates on the Magna Carta and provoked a strong campaign against the evangelical and Catholic churches. Finally it did not prosper and the proposal was eliminated from the final version.
The Government has postponed this debate, which will foreseeably be addressed next year by drafting a new Family Code that will be submitted to a referendum.