In his weekly radio address, President Obama announced he would travel to Cuba next month. He’s not the only one. Last week it was reported that “The United States and Cuba have signed an agreement authorizing up to 110 daily US commercial flights to Havana and nine other cities on the communist island. The first flight for more than 50 years between the two countries will take off in the next six months.” was the story
This is great news, if only so that those U.S. Citizens and residents with family and friends in Cuba may go and visit with them. It won’t’ stop there however – many Americans who otherwise would not be able to will now visit Cuba. They won’t have to say one thing in favor of a free-market republican form of government – the fact that every single one of those who visit live lives of riches only dreamt of in the workers’ paradise will speak with a deafening roar.
This is a long overdue relaxation of rules that Cuba imposed the United States has imposed on its own citizens’ travel rights. We expect the totalitarian regimes of the world like Cuba to restrict the travel plans of their inmates or citizens, but if we are really the land of free, how doesn’t that include the right to go where we please?
Does it make any sense to anyone that Americans may travel to Iran, or North Korea without issue, but a special license and government application be required for travel to our Caribbean neighbor? This is not about the trade embargo – this is about the embargo against U.S. Citizens being free to travel as they please.
Even with the new rules, tourism to Cuba is still forbidden by law. Yes, that’s right – those who wish to go will now be able to book travel themselves and without advance permission, but they “will have to certify that their visits are for educational, religious, cultural, journalistic, humanitarian or family purposes, among other permitted categories.” Such a shame the Obama administration doesn’t consider exercising freedom to travel a permissible reason.