Armando Christian Pérez, the renowned Grammy-winning rapper known as Pitbull, spoke out about the abuse of power in COVID-19 lockdowns. Pitbull, a first-generation Cuban American whose family escaped from Fidel Castro’s communism, claimed that Castro would be jealous of the power Democratic officials have exercised during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“My family comes from communism, they fled communism, they had everything taken away from them, everybody got murdered, everybody got killed,” Pitbull said in a video on RevoltTV. “That’s the reason me, being a first-generation Cuban American, I look at freedom and I appreciate that s***. I appreciate opportunity. … That comes from the fact that when Castro took over everything, and I’m looking at what’s going here right now.”
“The only person that’s hot… is Castro,” Pitbull added. “He’s going, ‘Y’all did it with a virus? Sh**. Y’all took over the world with a virus? You’ve got to be kidding me.'”
Pitbull noted that Castro “had missiles pointed to the United States of America” but he suggested that the COVID-19 lockdowns have done more damage to America than Russia did in the Cold War.
The rapper warned about Big Tech censorship, likening it to communism. “If anybody is not a part of the narrative we gonna take it off online… which to me smells like… communism,” he said.
Pitbull started to veer into potential conspiracy theory territory, talking about Event 201, a global pandemic exercise run by the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, the World Economic Forum, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that simulated a coronavirus outbreak. He suggested that “all the main CEOs in the world” resigned shortly before the COVID-19 outbreak in order to cash in. (2019 did have the most CEO departures in one year, but that 1,640 number was not as extreme as Pitbull suggested. More than 1,000 CEOs have lost their jobs annually since 2005, and nearly 1,500 lost their jobs in 2018.)
Despite Pitbull’s veering off into conspiracies, the rapper comes from a family of Cuban immigrants, so his warning about the lockdowns is both significant and chilling.
As Paul Sakka at The Blaze noted, Pitbull’s grandmother fought in the Cuban Revolution on Castro’s side only to realize that she had made a terrible mistake. Fearing the rumors about communist indoctrination camps for children, she sent her two daughters to the United States during Operation Peter Pan, a covert program that brought 14,000 Cuban children to the U.S. between 1960 and 1962. The U.S. government brought Pitbull’s mother and aunt to Florida, and Pitbull’s father would also land there after fleeing the Castro regime.
Pitbull has said he would never play a concert in Cuba so long as the communist Castros control the country. “I won’t perform in Cuba until there’s no more Castro and there’s a free Cuba,” he told The Guardian in 2011. “To me, Cuba’s the biggest prison in the world, and I would be very hypocritical were I to perform there. The people in Cuba, they know what I stand for, and there’s a lot of people in Cuba that stand for the same. But they can’t say it.”
COVID-19 lockdowns and anxiety likely cost more in terms of years of life lost than they save in terms of slowing the spread of the virus, according to a study from Just Facts.
In September, then-Attorney General William Barr called the lockdowns the “greatest intrusion on civil liberties in American history,” besides slavery, which was an intrusion of an altogether different and worse kind.
Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.