NLG-Mass Happy Hour: Supporting Puerto Rico

Happy Hour: Supporting Puerto Rico

This past summer tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets in Puerto Rico demanding the ouster of the corrupt governor Ricardo Rosselló. Amazingly, they succeeded in their demands. Rosselló resigned August 2 under threats of impeachment. But that was just one chapter in the long history of the 120 years of corporate dominance and political inequality in this U.S. colonial territory. NLG Chapter board member Jasmine Gomez lead us in a discussion of that history and what the struggle looks like for the future of Puerto Rico.

One example was how over 4,500 people in Puerto Rico died from the effects of Hurricane Maria and government negligence, and more than 100,000 people sought refuge on mainland US without true support from FEMA. Another was how the US has laws like the Jones-Shafroth Act (1917) and PROMESA (2016) which isolate Puerto Rico and devastate it’s economy. Puerto Ricans, both at home and in diaspora, are fighting against these as well and we must understand and acknowledge those struggles. 

Jasmine is the author of an in-depth 2018 report entitled, Blackout in Puerto Rico: How 120 Years of Corporate Dominance & Political Inequality Stifle Self-Determination Today. If you were unable to join us or attended and want to know more, we recommend it to you. Check it out.

Written by Judy Somberg

Pictures by Urszula Masny-Latos