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November 10 , 2017

Our Little Cuban Cousin

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LARGEST of all the fair West Indian Islands which lie in our open doorway is Cuba. The great south doorway to the United States and all North America, you know, is the Gulf of Mexico. But recently, as we all remember, we have had war and bloodshed at this doorway. The Spanish government, in trying to subdue its rebellious province of Cuba, brought great hardship and suffering upon the Cuban people, our neighbours, and our government at last decided that such things must not be at our very doorway. So to-day Cuba is free, and the great trouble of war is over and past for her. Yet, though war no longer troubles the Cuban people, they have many new hardships and difficulties to contend with, and need the friendly help of their more fortunate neighbours scarcely less than before. Now, in order that we may be able to help our friends and neighbours, the Cubans, we must know them better, and surely we shall all feel a stronger interest than ever before in their welfare. So we shall be glad to meet and know our little Cuban neighbour, Maria. We shall ask to have what Maria says translated for us, for most of us do not understand the Spanish language, which Maria speaks. We must remember, too, to pronounce her name as if it were spelled Mahreeah, for that is the way she and her family pronounce it. Our Cuban cousins, you know, like our cousins in Porto Rico, are descended from the dark-eyed, dark-haired Spanish people. Their forefathers came over seas from Spain to Cuba, as the English colonists came across the ocean to our country, which is now the United States. Yet we must remember that the Spanish people and the English people are near akin in the great human family. They both belong to the white race; and so we shall call our black-eyed little neighbour our near cousin. Welcome, then, to our little Cuban cousin!
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