Rubio’s Cuba views at odds with young Hispanic-Americans

As a young Hispanic-American, I am deeply concerned and saddened about the position Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioGOP chairman vows to protect whistleblowers following Vindman retirement over 'bullying' Lincoln Project offers list of GOP senators who 'protect' Trump in new ad GOP Miami mayor does not commit to voting for Trump MORE (R-Fla.) has taken in response to President Obama’s decision to thaw relations between our country and Cuba — mainly that he, if given the opportunity, would continue to implement policies that reflect the political realities of the Cold War. 

Similar to Rubio, my parents left their home nation of Peru because of political reasons. Unlike Rubio, I do not let the views of a generation of scarred Peruvians define my contemporary worldview. There is no doubt my parents’ political experiences have left their mark on me, but the world today is vastly different from when they immigrated to the U.S. 

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It is no longer safe to assume that the entire Cuban-American community supports punitive policies against Cuba. According to a poll conducted in 2014 by Florida International University in Miami, 62 percent of Cuban-Americans ages 18-29 oppose continuing the embargo policy in place. Among registered voters, 51 percent favored continuing the embargo and 49 percent opposed it. 

The statistic that I found most significant discussed what percentage of respondents supported reestablishing diplomatic ties between the U.S. and Cuba. Sixty-eight percent of respondents favored diplomatic relations with Cuba, with 90 percent of young respondents favoring a shift in our current diplomatic policy. However, support for reconstructing diplomatic relations with Cuba dropped precipitously for age groups older than 70. 

From these figures, I can only deduce that Cuban-American politicians such as Rubio are approaching a momentous fork in the road. As he campaigns for the Oval Office, I ask that he consider a few important questions. Is a policy that continues to isolate Cuba beneficial to the U.S. or the people of Cuba? And is his Cuba policy reflective of the broader Hispanic-American community or solely that of an older Cuban diaspora? If he is to be the face of the Hispanic-American community, then it is my hope that his worldview, and specifically his Cuba policy, is not held hostage by the political experiences of our parents’ generations. 

From Eddie Bejarano, Washington, D.C.


EPA’s Clean Power Plan ensures a future of sustainable energy 

“What do we want? New clean energy! When do we want it? Now!” seems to be the rallying cry of investors that have put forth $4 billion to invest in clean energy technology. What The Hill’s June 16 article “Private investors pony up $4 billion for clean energy” doesn’t mention, however, is the initiative set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency called the Clean Power Plan. This plan, which would mandate meaningful reductions in carbon dioxide, would reduce carbon pollution by 30 percent by the year 2030. States are able to meet their goals by either making existing power plants more efficient or moving toward sustainable, clean energy.

What does the Clean Power Plan have to do with clean energy investments? Everything! The White House hosted a Clean Energy Investment Summit on June 16, which laid out promises from businesses and organizations to “go greener” by turning toward clean energy. The Clean Power Plan, which provides tremendous opportunity for states to go green, promotes solutions to reducing pollution and addressing global warming concerns. Clean energy is achievable through investor support and the Clean Power Plan, and we should keep states accountable for this promise to moving toward better solutions. 

Let your elected officials know that you want to invest in what’s best.

From Rachael Chambers, Washington, D.C.