Puerto Rico: between colonialism, racism and slavery on July 25

Monday, 25 July 2022 — Multipolarista

July 25 is the date of the US invasion of Puerto Rico, and also the day of the creation of the “commonwealth.” Racism keeps it in a state of colonial impotence, based on court cases from the era of slavery.


Spanish American war imperialism cartoon

(Se puede leer este artículo en español aquí.)

Despite the harsh reality that Puerto Rico is neither free, nor associated, nor a state, July 25 marks the day of the creation of the constitution of the “Free Associated State,” or commonwealth, of Puerto Rico.

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The Puerto Ricans coming up with solutions in the face of crisis

Thursday, 16 June 2022 — Youtube

This is the story of one community group in Las Marías, Puerto Rico coming up with solutions for food and water security, safe and affordable housing, taking care of the elderly and teaching the youth.

You can find and support @Plenitud PR at https://www.plenitudpr.org/

The music in this video is from @Los Pleneros de la Cresta Find them here: https://open.spotify.com/artist/1uZVx…

TRUCUTÚ – Sebastián Chérrez live (Tommy Olivencia)

5 January 2022 — Youtube

And now for something completely different!

Este es un tema que me gusta mucho; hace un tiempo subimos un pequeño video de esta canción, hoy quisimos grabarlo con orquesta en vivo y la emoción que sentí fue única, espero que lo disfruten, pues me llena de alegría compartir con ustedes este video dedicado a todos los salseros del mundo.

Translation: This is a song that I like very much; some time ago we uploaded a short video of this song, today we wanted to record it with a live orchestra and the emotion I felt was unique, I hope you enjoy it, because it fills me with joy to share with you this video dedicated to all the salseros of the world.

Sebastián Chérrez Alvea
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Will the United States finally decolonize Puerto Rico?

11 May 2021 — MROnline

Puerto Rican flag outside the Capitol, San Juan, Puerto Rico, 2 March, 2008


On April 14, 2021 the House Committee on Natural Resources held hearings on two competing bills to end Puerto Rico’s colonial status. The different bills reflect the changing political dynamics in the archipelago, as well as the Puerto Rican diaspora’s growing political clout. H.R.1522, the Puerto Rican State Admission Act, binds Congress to admit Puerto Rico into the Union if a majority vote in favor of doing so in a special referendum. H.R. 2070, the Puerto Rico Self-Determination Act, authorizes the insular legislature to convene a semi-permanent status convention where elected delegates decide on alternative self-determination options that are “outside the territorial clause of the constitution.” The bill creates a bilateral negotiating commission of U.S. government officials and the convention delegates. In a referendum, voters will select a territorial option, which may include statehood, independence and sovereign free association. The bill requires that Congress “approve a joint resolution to ratify the preferred self-determination option” approved in a referendum. Commonwealth (or Estado Libre Asociado–ELA in Spanish) is not included as an option in this status bill.

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Rejecting Politics of Fear, Marginalized Puerto Ricans Led the Uprising By Oscar Oliver-Didier

3 August 2019 — Truthout

De Puntas por Puerto Rico group poses in front of the Puerto Rico governor's mansion. The De Puntas por Puerto Rico group poses in front of the Puerto Rico governor’s mansion.Alexandra Rodríguez-Jusino and Angélica Jiménez of De Puntas por Puerto Rico.

On July 17, 2019, a massive protest of approximately 100,000 people convened in San Juan’s historic center to call for the immediate resignation of Puerto Rican Gov. Ricardo Rosselló. A few days later, more than 500,000 people went on a national strike concentrated along one of the main highways of the San Juan metropolitan area.

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Puerto Rico in Flames By Atilio Borón

30 July 2019 — Internationalist 360°

The popular insurgency in Puerto Rico overthrew a corrupt, reactionary and servile government, which bowed its head and tolerated Donald Trump’s contempt and insults on the occasion of Hurricane Maria in September 2017 and the “humanitarian aid” that the New York tycoon personally went to distribute. Given that the Puerto Rican Constitution of 1952 does not provide for the call for elections in cases such as the current one, the resigned president must appoint his successor before August 2. Renewed popular pressure could overturn colonial regulations and force the installation of a transitional government, but it seems very unlikely that such a thing could happen. Other alternatives, such as a call for a Constitutional Assembly, seem closer to reality, as will be seen below. The unifying factor in the imposing street protests was the blatant corruption of Governor Ricardo Rosselló, the phenomenal indebtedness into which the island’s government has fallen, and the leaking of his revealing homophobic conversations, his misogyny, and his contempt for the main opposition figures and even for the victims of the hurricane.

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Puerto Rico, Hawaii and the Unravelling of US Empire

2 August 2019 — Consortium News

To be a law-abiding nation, the U.S. must grant self-determination in areas it has stolen, write Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers.

By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers

The results of centuries of U.S. empire, which began with Manifest Destiny that crossed the North American continent and grew into a global empire, are coming home to roost in Puerto Rico and Hawaii.

Puerto Ricans had an important victory in July with the resignation of Gov. Ricardo Rosselló after more than one million people protested to demand his removal. This was a powerful display of people power, but changing the head of state does not confront the real issues for Puerto Rico: ending colonialism and ensuring self-determination.

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Puerto Rican crisis deepens over Rosselló’s replacement By Rafael Azul

30 July 2019 — WSWS

The crisis of rule in Puerto Rico deepened on Sunday when Puerto Rico’s Secretary of Justice, Wanda Vázquez, second in line to replace Governor Ricardo Rosselló, declined the appointment in a Twitter message. Rosselló announced his resignation from the governorship on July 24, following twelve days of mass popular protests. The governor’s resignation is to take effect on this Friday, August 2.

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Puerto Rico ousts corrupt governor — is ‘La Junta’ next?

29 July 2019 — Youtube

A historic people’s uprising in Puerto Rico has forced the resignation of Governor Ricardo Rosello – but the struggle doesn’t stop there. Protesters have voiced opposition to ‘La Junta,’ the unelected, Washington-appointed board that controls the island’s finances and promotes harsh austerity. Guest: Dr. Rima Brusi, scholar-in-residence at the Center for Human Rights and Peace Studies, Lehman College-City University of New York.
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Wall Street demands “discipline” as protests continue in Puerto Rico By Eric London

26 July 2019 — WSWS

Hours after Puerto Rican Governor Ricardo Rosselló’s early Thursday morning announcement that he will resign on August 2nd, thousands demonstrated in downtown San Juan demanding the resignation of his successor, Justice Minister Wanda Vázquez Garced. Both Rosselló and Vázquez are members of the New Progressive Party (PNP) and the Democratic Party.

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Puerto Rico governor resigns after popular protests By Jerry White

25 July 2019 — WSWS

After two weeks of protests demanding his removal, Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló announced his resignation late Wednesday night. In a statement posted online, Rosselló said he would step down on August 2. The announcement was met with cheers by thousands of protesters who gathered outside the governor’s La Fortaleza (The Fortress) residence in the Old San Juan district of the Caribbean island’s capital.

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Protests flare up in Puerto Rico: Hundreds of thousands flood streets

19 July 2019 — Counter Currents

Hundreds of thousands have marched in Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory since 1898, for the fifth consecutive day on Thursday. They are calling for the resignation of Ricardo Rosselló, governor of the financial crisis shattered and billions of dollars debt burdened island territory. Protestors cleared of the streets Thursday morning after clashing with police all night.

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Protests erupt in Puerto Rico after leaked texts from governor reveal conspiracy to loot island By Julio Patron

18 July 2019 — WSWS

Mass protests have erupted throughout the island of Puerto Rico demanding the resignation of Governor Ricardo Rosselló after 889 pages of text messages from the governor’s phone were leaked to the public by the Center for Investigative Journalism.

Birds-eye view of San Juan protests (Source: Twitter @m_illustr)

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Documentary – “Raíces (Bomba y Plena)”

5 July 2019 — Jazz on the Tube

Produced by Paradiso Films; written, edited and directed by Paloma Suau; and funded by Banco Popular in 2001.

Filmed in Puerto Rico and Puerto Rico North (aka El Bronx)

A beautiful mix of historic and contemporary footage paying homage to the Bomba and Plena.

Starring: Marc Anthony, Jose Feliciano, Danny Rivera, Ismael Rivera Jr, and more.

In Spanish, but even if you don’t have any Spanish you will learn a lot. As the great Bronx philosopher said: “You can observe a lot by just watching.”

If you don’t know this music, there is a hole in your American music education.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

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Fort Apache Lives: In Memoriam, Jerry González (1949-2018) By Dr. José E. Cruz

27 October 2018 — Centro Voices
[I have to own up to more than a passing connection to Jerry Gonzālez, one because I was designer and constructor of El Museo del Barrio in East Harlem for six years, under the direction of my dear friend and colleague, Jack Aguéros (who is sadly, no longer with us).  And two, because I used be part of the team that produced the Centro Buletin, from which this essay is taken and I knew Jerry, if only in passing but had also worked on another long essay that the Centro Buletin produced in 1989 on Jerry and Andy, his brother and the Fort Apache Band. But above all, Jerry left us his music which will never die. Read on… W.B.]

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