What’s Sauce for the Goose Is Sauce for the Gander

by Norman Horowitz

Yesterday, I questioned the hypocrisy of punishing Ozzie Guillen for “admiring” Fidel Castro while simultaneously honoring the repression of our trading partner China. I also questioned the hypocrisy of apologizing to the victims of Castro’s dictatorship while simultaneously ignoring the victims of the US-backed dictatorship of Fulgencio Batistia, whom Castro overthrew.

Today, I have a new “proportional dilemma”:

[Last month,] Pope Benedict XVI…met with Fidel Castro for a half-hour before departing for Rome, wrapping up a weeklong trip to Mexico and Cuba.

The pope did not meet with Cuban dissidents during his trip…

The site where the pope delivered Wednesday’s Mass — Havana’s Plaza of the Revolution — is the same place where Castro…delivered countless speeches over the decades.

If critics of the Castro government were looking for a more direct challenge to Cuba’s one-party state and a push for greater political freedoms, Benedict did not deliver.

If Catholics insist that Ozzie Guillen must apologize, will they also insist that Pope Benedict apologize? If Guillen must step down from his job for five days as punishment, must the Pope also step down for five days?

Be Careful Whom You Admire

by Norman Horowitz

Ozzie Guillen said something “politically incorrect.” For his punishment, the Miami Marlins have suspended him for five games.

In his “politically incorrect” remarks, Guillen expressed admiration for Fidel Castro. In response, the team apologized to “victims of [Castro’s] dictatorship.”

It appears that it no longer matters that Fidel Castro led a movement that overthrew Fulgencio Batista:

[Batista] was the United States-aligned Cuban President dictator and military leader who served as the leader of Cuba from 1940 to 1944 and from 1952 to 1959, before being overthrown as a result of the Cuban Revolution.

…Batista suspended the Constitution and revoked most political liberties, He  aligned with the wealthiest landowners who owned the largest sugar plantations, and presided over a stagnating economy that widened the gap between rich and poor Cubans. Batista’s increasingly corrupt and repressive regime then began to systematically profit from the exploitation of Cuba’s commercial interests, by negotiating lucrative relationships with the American mafia, who controlled the drug, gambling, and prostitution businesses in Havana, and with large multinational American corporations that had invested considerable amounts of money in Cuba. To quell the growing discontent amongst the populace — which was subsequently displayed through frequent student riots and anti-Batista demonstrations — Batista established tighter censorship of the media, while also utilizing his anti-Communist secret police and U.S.-supplied weaponry to carry out wide-scale violence, torture and public executions; ultimately killing as many as 20,000 Cubans.

The victims of Batista’s dictatorship never received an apology…from the Marlins or anyone else in this country.

Moreover, the “Batista transgressions” were, to the best of my knowledge, unreported in our freedom-loving country by our freedom-loving mainstream media.

To punish Ozzie Guillen for speaking of his admiration of Fidel Castro is about an un-American an act as I can remember anyone perpetrating in the game of baseball.

At this very moment, representatives from the mainstream media outlets are visiting China, a horridly repressive country that does not honor copyrights, and they are honoring their repressive television service.

So riddle me this: If it is a good thing to be nice to a repressive country and their media, why is it a bad thing to say something nice about Fidel Castro?

Our hypocrisy is stunning and sad.