The Cuban Embargo: Relic of the Past

I just watched a baseball game in San Diego. Japan played Cuba in international play. Dice-K pitched for Japan and was unhittable. Fun to watch him. However, the odd thing for me was the Cuban team itself. Here it is a nice sunny day in San Diego, people having a great time, but behind the scenes a cold war simmer is still there. Not surprisingly the local police told me of the “restrictions” when I asked. The people with me thought I was nuts when I walked up to the police to ask what pre-cautions were in place to keep Cuban players from defecting. He did not want to say much, but he did say the Cuban players are not allowed TVs or phones in their rooms. I am sure the restrictions were much more. People in Miami can have all the passion they want about this issue, but the idea that we still have a “wall” in 2009 that keeps twenty-something year old Cuban baseball players under lock and key is entirely silly. Sadly, I doubt many people in the stadium today thought about defections, embargoes and diplomacy. After all the America of today is all about “shiny happy people.” And if the shiny happy isn’t there…the government will fix it for us.