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Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet.  Photo provided by the Lawton Foundation for Human Rights.


Freedom is an inalienable right of our species.  We are endowed with a creative consciousness and a selfless spirit that requires the values practiced in a free society to thrive.  This is why people will always resist enslavement and tyranny.   Our creative consciousness, or human spirit if you will, requires basic freedoms to find purpose: freedom of speech, expression and press; freedom of religion; freedom of assembly and association; the right to equal protection under the law; and the right to due process and a fair trial.  The absence of such attributes makes existence meaningless.


As such, these basic principles of freedom must be rooted in every society and institutionalized by a democratic system.  It is our duty, through vigilance and participation, to strengthen the pillars of democracy so that the system protects our basic freedoms.  To accomplish this goal, we must ensure a democratic state has constitutional limitations on the power of government, completes peaceful transfers of power, recognizes the sovereignty of the people, protects minority rights, holds free and fair elections, guarantees equality before the law, practices due process, and protects economic rights of the individual.


I say all this not forgetting that in my country, beautiful Cuba, there is a communist totalitarian dictatorship that vehemently crushes the freedom of the Cuban people. I hope that one day my people will exercise the basic human ideals of freedom described above.  Such freedom is our destiny and our right as human beings; it’s our reason for living.


Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet is a Cuban dissident and former prisoner of conscience. 


Learn more about Dr. Biscet and his cause by viewing his donations to the Freedom Collection’s physical archive.