Miami attorney and gay rights activist David da Silva Cornell has written a column for Huffington Post headlined, Mariela Castro and LGBT Leader Rea Carey: Conversation, Yes -- But Please, Not in a Vacuum.
Da Silva Cornell writes about the controversial program Tuesday night at the New York Public Library, in which Castro, niece of Fidel and daughter of Raul, will discuss LGBT rights in Cuba with Rea Carey, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.
Moshe Dayan once noted, "If you want to make peace, you don't talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies." I believe that that observation is equally applicable if you want to encourage change by regimes which violate human rights. Refusing even to engage in dialogue with those with whom one disagrees never seems to yield results. I therefore cannot agree with those -- such as LGBT-ally Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) -- who wholly oppose Castro's visit and her participation in dialogues here.
Nor can I -- or, I think, any reasonable observer -- deny what positive impact Mariela Castro has had in improving the lives of LGBT Cubans.