Monday, January 23, 2012

It's More Like Unnecessary and Misguided Puffing

Right on the heels of the 'Work It' controversy comes some unnecessary and misguiding diatribe of Puerto Rico. Yes, diatribe. I'll point out several reasons why this piece gets it all wrong and shows the lack of knowledge, about Puerto Rico, the writer has.
First, the island that doesn't exist, exists more than as a physical presence. Where it doesn't exist is in an American society which knows very little to null about the island. It has existed, and still continues to do so, as America's little colony in the Caribbean. It exists with a national identity like no other and it is a country to those who believe and cherish that identity.

Second, we have this:

" people often define themselves as whites. At the same time whites from there are often defined as colored people in the US and abroad..."

  "....unmentionable experiments in the past century by the US government. Because of that, the scars of colonialism by two subsequent imperial rulers, and because its people have fought every US war, the prevailing psychological scars are deep...."
The article fails to honestly realize that Puerto Rico's centuries old colonial stigma, over 400 years under Spain and nearly 114 under the U.S., has ingrained into the psyche of the people the unequivocal mindset that white is the dominating factor. Its relationship with the U.S led to the demise of its agrarian society via an attempt to industrialize, Operation Bootstrap, that failed miserably. The island's economic and social houses have been marred by the U.S. trade laws and restrictions it is subjected to.

Third, what the writer generally implies is that every street corner in Puerto Rico is crime infested and its population has become immune to "shootings and executions in the middle of the day on the expressways and virtually anywhere". Yes, there are surmounting problems, but the writer paints a picture of society that has succumbed to those problems and does nothing, when in fact, there are many who commit themselves to change and lead honest and productive lives.


 "...those who migrated to the mainland and their descendants have all the right to be and to call themselves Americans if they want to, and in fact they have no other choice. There are many grey areas in regards to the citizenship and no easy answers. Only Puerto Ricans can decide their fate..."

They have all the right to be and call themselves American? Is the writer referring to the Jones Act of 1914? That they have no other choice and that only Puerto Ricans can decide their fate, must also begin with the U.S. Congress facing its responsibility under the U.S Constitution's Article 4, Section 3, Territorial Clause.

No fear and loathing here.


  1. Excellent response! I couldn't believe she wrote that garbage! Thanks for setting things straight on our behalf.