I suppose it behooves me, as a onetime journalist for the San Juan Star (20+ years on the island, 10+ years in Washington, D.C.), to say something about what recently went down in Puerto Rico. The demonstrations there were wonderful, the demonstrators put a new, joyful spin on the workings of democracy. A mini-revolution that overthrew a leader and not a shot was fired by either side!
Well, for one, Congress has to get off whatever it’s on and do some friggin’ thing. Like acknowledging the original U.S. sin of colonializing the island, for all the greedy reasons— economic, imperialistic, racist, etc.—that lands have been colonialized down through the ages.
Therefore, in this age of “enlightenment,” Congress should realize that the U.S. government owes Puerto Rico. It should take legislative steps to help make the island at least economically viable for, say, 90 percent, instead of about 50 percent, of the people living there. Then, tell the voters “whatever you want,” as far as status in concerned, and, unlike a Jewish mother, don’t add under its breath, “as long as it’s what I want.” O.K., I apologize to Jewish mothers, who are no different from Italian, Greek, Puerto Rican, etc. mothers when it comes to making more than sure that their kids get the best.
How about these possible status solutions: Let Puerto Rico become a social democratic state of the Union, a la the ideas propagated by Rep. Alejandria Ocasio Cortes; or allow the island to become as independent as it wants to be, even with the possibility of dual citizenship for a time, with plenty of U.S. “foreign” aide pouring in until the nation of Puerto Rico gets on its own two economic feet.
Just asking, and suggesting—though someone in those hallowed, hollow halls of Congress should be proposing.