One hundred years ago, more than a million Puerto Ricans were granted United States citizenship. It wasn’t exactly a gift because President Woodrow Wilson asked Congress for a declaration of war on Germany. The point of extending American citizenship to Puerto Ricans was to get 20,000 to participate in the World War.
US federal agencies today control the island’s currency, a banking system, international trade, foreign relations, shipping and maritime laws, TV, radio, postal system, immigration, Social Security, customs, transportation, military, import-export regulations, environmental controls, coastal operations, airspace, civil, criminal, and judicial codes.
A hundred years later, the per capita income of Puerto Ricans is approximate $15,200, which is half that of Mississippi, the poorest state in the union. In the past five years, the government raised the retirement age, increased worker contributions, lowered public pensions and benefits. It also hiked the water rates by 60 percent, raised the gasoline tax, hiked sales taxes to 11.5 percent, and allowed electricity rates to skyrocket. A total of 105 separate taxes have been reportedly raised in Puerto Rico.
Now, after Maria devastated the island, many are using terms like grandstanding, photo-op as the terms to describe how Trump is handling the crisis in Puerto Rico. However, the sharpest criticism is from late night TV.
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While most of the news coverage from Puerto Rico has been sympathetic to the victims and critical of Trump's role, the reporting on the ground by TV and other News organizations have been in-depth.
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Meanwhile $35M in private funds have been raised for Puerto Rico relief by JLo, ARod and Marc Anthony. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/jennifer-lopez-alex-rodriguez-marc-anthony-... However, American citizens in Puerto Rico are still in dire need of additional assistance. https://youtu.be/6NcE9EEgHRk
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