According to Mariela Castro, the famous outspoken gay rights activist and a sexologist, the current Cuban President Raul Castro, brother of Fidel Castro and her father, supports giving homosexuals greater rights and ending the discrimination against homosexuals. Mariela Castro who also leads the National Center for Sex Education, proclaimed Raul Castro’s support of LGBT activism at a gay rights march in the capital city of Havana.
Specifically, according to Ms. Castro, her father has “done some advocacy work” and that he once said “we cannot make progress if we continue to live with these prejudices” regarding the average treatment of gays in Cuba.
Ms. Castro said all of this as she was leading a conga line adorn with rainbow flags and vibrant colors of hundreds of LGBT activists and transvestites for the “Fifth Cuban Day Against Homophobia”.
Ms. Castro has been trying to pressure the government into legalizing same-sex unions without touching the topic of same-sex marriage. She expects that the Cuban government will draft the legislation some time this year.
Historically, homosexuality has been looked down upon in Cuba and homosexuals themselves were hunted down, forced to attend work camps, exiled or put under house arrest under Fidel Castro’s rule.
Fidel Castro did once apologize later on for carrying out anti-homosexual operations.
Reforms in Cuba have startlingly started under Raul Castro who succeeded his brother Fidel in 2006 as the former leader struggles with old age and illness.
Among the reforms that have been introduced in Cuba, necessary for both social and economic goals, are the legalization of the buying and selling of automobiles albeit with tough restrictions.
Besides that, the Cuban National Assembly has recently allowed every Cuban and even permanent residents to buy and sell, at most, 2 homes which made it the first time ever for Cubans to do what they wish with their homes since 1959 when Fidel Castro took power after the Cuban Revolution.
The Cuban government is still criticized over its human rights violations, slow dismantling of the Soviet system and the harassment of the Ladies In White movement.