Thanks to the influence of sexologist Mariela Castro Espin, the daughter of Cuban President Raul Castro and niece of Fidel, the TBLG community on the island has seen major progress from the days when homophobia ran rampant on the island. While there's been improvement on many LGBT fronts, same gender marriage isn't one of them because Cuba's constitution does not allow it. There's been such forward momentum lately on TBLG issues that Fidel Castro last year expressed his regrets about the past persecution and repression of the LGBT community under the first decades of his leadership.
However, there's also some interesting chatter about tensions rising amongst the GLBT community on the island aimed at their powerful benefactor.
Things for the transcommunity are looking even brighter with a gender program run by Mariela Castro called CENESEX that offers free SRS to Cuban citizens. The person who received the first state sanctioned SRS surgery in Cuba in 2007 as part of this program is in the news again for another groundbreaking reason.
37 year old Wendy Iriepa, one of the Cuban transpeople I featured as part of a trans photo essay post on this blog, is getting married to 31 year old Ignacio Estrada on August 13, Fidel Castro’s 85th birthday.
It marks the first wedding of its kind in Cuba. While she is recognized as a female under Cuban law (duh), interestingly enough her future hubby considers himself gay.
He says that doesn't matter because he fell in love with Iriepa and hopes that their marriage will mark a new era for the nation of Cuba.
Congratulations Wendy and Ignacio. May you both have a long, healthy and happy marriage.
We also hope it marks a new era for the rest of the nations on this planet too. They need to cease and desist with interfering with and invalidating our marriages for specious faith-based bigoted reasons.