A Somos Jovenes magazine article on Cuban youth by Cuban Javier Gomez Lastra faulted them for apathy, being lazy, lacking motivation, and materialism. He called for an emphasis on what national hero Jose Marti taught: “Being educated is the only way to be free.” The author blamed the “lack of accurate guidance” by parents and the lack of jobs for youth for their focus on “salsa, greenbacks, and beer,” a slogan from a soap opera. The economic crisis of the early 90s caused by the end of support by the USSR, called “the struggle,” led to a falling away from revolutionary ideals. Thus, “many Cubans learned to live for the moment” and develop illegal strategies to make money. Psychologist Elaine Morales Chuco blamed the reduction of state educational and recreation centers and the decline of the old model of study-work-pay on “the move of many young people to the socio-cultural world of the street.” She added, “Thus, many Cubans learned to live for the moment, the uncertainty and with very little chance to develop solid life projects.”
Javier Gómez Lastra, Somos Jovenes Magazine, March 13, 2015.