Allen Ginsberg would have welcomed Fidel Castro’s recent admission of responsibility for the wave of homophobia and anti-gay persecution that quickly followed the triumph of the Cuban Revolution. After all, Ginsberg himself was thrown out of Cuba in 1965 for being, among other things, gay, and for having the audacity to suggest publicly that being gay was okay.
Castro denies being homophobic himself (a plausible enough assertion) and insists that he was absorbed, in the years following the revolution, in more serious issues like CIA assassination plots and the missile crisis, and that he simply did not do anything to stop or restrain the homophobia that, he insists, was an ingrained kernel of Cuban cultural life.
“Homosexual acts” were not decriminalized in Cuba until 1979, far to late to spare many, many individuals from persecution, harassment, arrest, internal exile, and incarceration. The whole thing, Castro admitted, as a “great injustice.”
It sure the fuck was.