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Coverage Of Celebrity Trip To Cuba Confounds

Creative Commons-licensed Photo on Flickr by Shrieking Tree

Over the weekend there was a major scandal over human rights abuses on the island of Cuba. No, not the hunger strike at Gitmo over the horrendous conditions and loss of legal rights. Some celebrities traveled to Cuba for their vacation and the establishment lost their minds.

Jay-Z and Beyoncé may have celebrated five years of wedded bliss in Cuba last week, but there are two Republican members of Congress who have some questions about the anniversary trip.

Representatives Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Mario Diaz-Balart wrote a letter to the U.S. Treasury Department last Friday pressing for information regarding the type of license the superstar couple had obtained in order to travel to Cuba. There is a U.S. trade embargo against Cuba that prevents U.S. citizens from traveling there. Bey and Jay also brought their mothers along for the trip, where they were spotted eating out with them and later walking through the streets of Havana.

It seems unlikely the celebrities went to Cuba without obtaining authorization given they would be photographed and taped endlessly on the trip. Not much of a secret getaway. But the Republican Congresspeople were not just beating their shoe on the table to placate reactionary constituents, they were piggy backing on a story the media was already running.

So why is it scandalous and newsworthy for celebrities to travel to Havana, Cuba because of claims of human rights abuses but not scandalous or newsworthy when prisoners in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba go on a hunger strike in protest of torture?

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Dan Wright

Dan Wright

Daniel Wright is a longtime blogger and currently writes for Shadowproof. He lives in New Jersey, by choice.