Marco Rubio blasts Black Lives Matter for defending communist Cuban regime
Mambers of the delegation want Cuban protesters to have Wi-fi, courtesy of the U.S. Image via AP.

Senator labeled the group as an 'extortionist ring.'

Sen. Marco Rubio joined other Florida Republicans to slam Black Lives Matter for defending the Cuban government amid historic anti-communist protests.

On Wednesday evening, Black Lives Matter issued a statement placing the blame for economic conditions on U.S. policy.

“Black Lives Matter condemns the U.S. federal government’s inhumane treatment of Cubans and urged it to immediately lift the economic embargo,” the statement reads. “This cruel and inhumane policy, instituted with the explicit intention of destabilizing the country and undermining Cubans’ right to choose their own government, is at the heart of Cuba’s current crisis. Since 1962, the United States has forced pain and suffering on the people of Cuba by cutting off food, medicine and supplies, costing the tiny island nation an estimated $130 billion.”

Rubio, a first-generation Cuban American, slammed the defensive rhetoric. Florida’s senior Senator has defended sanctions for years and criticized former President Barack Obama in 2016 for his efforts to normalize relations with the Cuban regime.

“The extortionist ring known as the Black Lives Matter organization took a break today from shaking down corporations for millions and buying themselves mansions to share their support for the Communist regime in Cuba,” Rubio said.

Rep. Greg Steube, a Sarasota Republican, also took a shot at the group.

“What a load of garbage,” he tweeted. “One communist organization defending another. These people are waving American flags and protesting a brutal communist regime that has oppressed them for generations.”

The Black Lives Matter movement notably arose in 2013 after the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting of Trayvon Martin in Sanford. But the group has been criticized by Republicans for pushing a leftist agenda in the name of civil rights and equality.

The group in recent days criticized a double-standard in the enforcement of Florida’s new “anti-riot” law, passed in response to nationwide demonstrations last summer after the death of George Floyd. But members question why the law hasn’t been applied to Cuban protests in Miami in solidarity with protesters on the island of Cuba.

But Republicans are questioning the sympathy for the Cuban regime in the statement issued by the organization. The Black Lives Matter statement suggests Cuba has always assisted African freedom fighters and civil rights movements.

“Cuba has historically demonstrated solidarity with oppressed peoples of African descent, from protecting Black revolutionaries like Assata Shakur through granting her asylum, to supporting Black liberation struggled in Angola, Mozambique, Guinea Bissau and South Africa,” the statement reads.

Shakur, a former Black Liberation Army member who remains wanted by the FBI, escaped from prison and fled the U.S. after her conviction for the murder of a New Jersey state trooper.

The Black Lives Matter blames the Cuban government’s inability to handle the COVID-19 pandemic on the U.S. embargo and calls on President Joe Biden to lift sanctions.

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


  • Beth

    July 15, 2021 at 11:41 am

    In other news sane intelligent Americans blast Marco Rubio for spending years enabling a psychopath in his attempts to destroy democracy in the United States.


    July 15, 2021 at 11:53 am

    Thank you for your coverage..Howeer the slant of the Rubio opinion is rather disturbing. In Manhattan Dr. Larry Myers (Playwright/Catholic Professor at St John s University) & award winning international theater) has worked extensively with Black Lives Matter. The shameful politics goes against Faith, compassion & Catholicism. In the play
    “Santeria Street Theater” the African Catholicism is explored as well as Cuban rights. The people must be given food, medicine expression, internet, love.. Pray for those who put politics above care & respect for all. Expression for Cuba SOS CUBA!!! no more suppression depression oppression! Maybe hands on in the trenches/boots on ground work ,service & volunteerism might soften these sad politico s feudalism & Teutonic tendencies. Forgive them but announce their shenanagans.. .In my time as Surfside Miami helper at the condo site my priorities rang out as well as my calling. Rather than sit an office issuing intolerant proclamations one might chip in, shut up & listen Mother (Saint) Theresa said simply, “Listen.: I fear she d plug her ears hearing what Rubio has to spew.

  • Charlene

    July 15, 2021 at 12:27 pm

    It’s just basic math to recognize that the sanctions that the US has forced onto Cuba for *decades*, including the more recent sanctions imposed by Trump, hurt the Cuban people as a whole. If we claim to care about the Cuban people, then we have the power to alleviate their suffering by lifting the broad based sanctions on the people. There is nothing communist or socialist about basic math and logic.

  • Gladys Hector

    July 15, 2021 at 2:15 pm

    I think before anyone can comment about any topic what so ever, they first have to walk in the shoes of the people who have actually lived in Cuba. If you have not live in a Communist country you do not know the really of Communism. And if they like it so much that system why don’t they go and live there? I would love for them to go and live in Cuba or Venezuela?

    • Cinforoso

      July 15, 2021 at 10:48 pm

      Spot on. Black Lives Matter and elite progressives trying to talk about stuff they are clueless on. Rubio’s comment was right on point. BLM is a socialist tool.

    • jaxandblack

      July 19, 2021 at 7:38 am

      It has been a since I was born that someone was always telling someone else where they should go live. If the US lifted the embargo on CUBA and nothing changed, it would be 100% on CUBA. As it stands there are several different obstacles and the US is def one of them. No we don’t know what is like to live in a communist country but we do know what is is like to live in white America.

  • Charlotte Greenbarg

    July 16, 2021 at 7:46 am

    We can always identify the far left trolls who spew anti-American hate and blame the U.S. for all the world’s ills. Democrats need to clean up their acts

    • PeterH

      July 16, 2021 at 6:52 pm

      BLACK LIVES MATTER …..even the 29% of Afro- Cubans struggling in Cuba!

      Why don’t you spend some time learning about USA involvement in Cuba. Start with the 1898 invasion!

      • Jaxandblack

        July 19, 2021 at 7:40 am

        They could start with Trump putting Cuba on the terriorist list with Iran, North Korea and Syria.. They could start there right…


    July 16, 2021 at 10:19 am

    Hate Group Hate Crimes
    You can watch them plan blow up skyway bridge
    Blow up Clarksville Indiana Bridge
    When I lived and worked in Kentucky
    Education Norton Medical School Nursing

  • Don Higgins

    July 16, 2021 at 11:52 am

    BLM – What it really is…
    Starting in 2013, the BLM was formed to push civil rights and equality for blacks. Many elite progressives felt sympathy for any so-called oppression that blacks may or may not -feel. The Progressives used the BLM as a socialist tool, so they welcomed them. BLM, like Jackson and Sharpton before them, learned how to shake down American companies and hold them hostage to extort large sums of money for “the Cause”. After all, American companies can then say they helped “minority’s – and feel good about that.

    The problem is that BLM has not helped inner cities, the homeless or done a single thing to stop “oppression” of black people. They have done nothing to help stop the rampant crime that as a percentage – comes mainly from the black community. Nothing to try to help stop the suffering and pain that many in the poor inner city’s feel. They have done nothing to help the single head of household problem or even help kids go to – or get into schools. NOTHING.

    They are simply put a racist, terroristic, extortionist organization that pushes a leftist/ Marxist agenda in the name of civil rights and equality. They are as bad as the KKK once was and should be treated as such. They need to be eliminated.

    The best example has just reared its ugly head. The BLM has come out and publicly condemns the USA and shows support for the brutal and oppressive communist regime in Cuba. This is a false, ridiculous and stupid stance to take. The BLM has no creditability, no morals and should be shut down ASAP. Interesting to note that the Biden admistration has said that they will not accept any refugees from Cuba (who would probably vote republican) as they open the floodgates on the Mexican border(who would probably vote democrap).

    • PeterH

      July 16, 2021 at 6:42 pm

      “…. The Progressives used the BLM as a socialist too….”

      Statement not based on fact.

  • PeterH

    July 16, 2021 at 6:38 pm

    Sorry Marco but disagreeing with Republicans tried and failed Cuba policies is not an endorsement of the Cuban government.

    Real conservatives should join us at the Lincoln Project. Florida deserves competent leadership and it’s not getting it from Marco Rubio, Ron DeSantis or Rick Scott.

Comments are closed.


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