Rush, Jesse, and Fidel
By Humberto Fontova
Jesse Jackson's ( public) objections to Rush Limbaugh's NFL ownership plan ran roughly as follows: "Rush Limbaugh made his wealth appealing to the fears of whites with an unending line of insults against blacks and other minorities...the National Football League has set high standards for racial justice and inclusion."
"Viva Fidel!" bellowed Rev. Jesse Jackson during his speech at the University of Havana in June 1984, while trailing a 300 person entourage that included Rev. Jeremiah Wright. "Viva Che Guevara!" he yelled again with fists raised high. "Long Live our cry of freedom!"
"He (Jesse Jackson) is a great personality," reciprocated a beaming Fidel Castro, "a brilliant man. Jackson's main characteristic is honesty. He is sincere and there is no hint of demagoguery in his speech."As mentioned, this was summer of 1984, so at the time, the world's longest-suffering black political prisoner suffered his incarceration and tortures in stoic defiance. "Nigger!" taunted his jailers between tortures. "We pulled you down from the trees and cut off your tail!"
I do not refer to Nelson Mandela. No, this prisoner was being tortured a few miles away from the Revs. Jackson, Wright and their entourage of black American luminaries. The prisoner was a black Cuban named Eusebio Penalver and he was being tortured by Reverend Jackson's gracious hosts. Mr Penalver's incarceration and tortures stretched to 29 years which makes him the longest-suffering black political prisoner in modern history, surpassing Nelson Mandela's record in time behind bars and probably doubling the horrors suffered by Mandela during this period.