Friday, August 24, 2012

Radio Martí: Freedom, democracy and porn

Screenshot from Castro's website
Taxpayer-financed Radio Martí this month hosted a porn star who offered advice to Cubans who might be interested in getting into the skin trade.
Ronald Reagan established Radio Martí in 1983 to help promote freedom and democracy, but the Aug. 1 program featuring Angelina Castro was all about sex.
"I'm doing what I like," Castro told the station. "This career's what you make of it."
Castro took part in a Radio Martí show called 1800 Online, touted as a program that "uncovers the world of the Internet for Cubans who have hardly or never seen it."
The show's hosts are Lizandra Diaz Blanco and Juan Juan Almeida, son of the late Juan Almeida, one of the original commanders of the Cuban revolution.
Castro, 30, left Cuba when she was 10, went to the Dominican Republic and settled in the United States two years later.
Castro in 2009. Photo: Flickriver
Her biography says she first did a porn movie because she was curious. She told Radio Martí she needed money to pay her student loans.
She said she "fell in love with the industry" and the "fantasy" involved in acting.
Almeida asked her how Cubans still living on the island could contact her if they were interested in learning more about working in the porn industry.
Castro said pornography isn't like many people imagine. She said she doesn't make millions of dollars, ride around in a limo and have underlings tending to all her needs, giving her massages and taking care of her skin.
Making porn movies is work, she said. It's a job like any other.
Not all listeners appreciated hearing from a porn star.
The program was "crude," former political prisoner Ángel Cuadra wrote in Diario Las Américas on Aug. 24.
Castro's website "showcases the grossest scenes of pornography" and it's "embarrassing" to see her work promoted, Cuadra wrote.
While the Soviet Union was in power, Radio Free Europe tried to instill in listeners "a yearning for freedom and democracy," he wrote.
Cuadra said he didn't know "what possible oversight" could have led to the porn star's appearance on Radio Martí. The station should be broadcasting instead messages of "freedom, ethics and civic and patriotic values," he wrote.
Journalist Luís Diaz also questioned whether Radio Martí ought to host porn stars during a program on Telemiami, a 24-hour cable station.
Cuban writer Emilio Ichikawa criticized the idea of Diaz acting as a censor. He said Castro's "liberating smile and sense of humor" would do more for the freedom of Cuba than Diaz' "pedagogical dizziness."
Radio Martí is part of the Office of Cuba Broadcasting, which requested a budget of $23.59 million for 2013, down from $29.3 million this year. Its headquarters is in Miami.
A 2013 budget request states:
"The Office of Cuba Broadcasting broadcasts to audiences in Cuba via radio and television. Radio Martí and TV Martí aim to provide news, features, and information denied by the government to the Cuban audience. Their goal is to promote a better understanding of democratic values, human rights, market economies, free media, and freedom of expression."
An online Latino fashion store, Surropa, sells Angelina Castro for president t-shirts.
Castro didn't talk about freedom or democracy while on Radio Martí. She did mention she is married and has a child.
"I'm normal," she said. "I'm not an extraterrestrial."
But once the camera starts rolling, she said, "I am transformed into Angelina Castro the Beast."
Almeida asked Castro the difference between pornography and prostitution. She replied that if porn stars are prostitutes, then so are all those who act on TV and in soap operas.
Asked why pornography is illegal in Cuba, Castro said many things are prohibited on the island. She joked that she wouldn't be surprised to see sexual relations rationed in Cuba just like rice and beans with couples allowed just one romantic encounter per month.
But she hopes that pornography is legalized in Cuba in the future, and she said she'd like to return to her homeland to make a porno one day.
h/t to Emilio Ichikawa

1 comment:

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