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If you can explain to this Gringo...

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  • If you can explain to this Gringo...

    I am a Pennsylvanian Gringo who cannot understand why Puerto Ricans do not want to become a state with all the benefits and self control of governing yourselfs that will be bestowed upon you.

    Being a non Puerto Rican and living in the states, I see the tremendous benefits of being a state. I also see the tremendous benefits adding a 51st state as Puerto Rico could bring to the United States.

    Because I am an "outsider", I'am curious to know the reasons why Puerto Rico should be its own country. Does Puerto Rico have the resources and government in place to support itself?



  • #2
    I think we struggle with the idea of losing our national identity.

    1. Some are able to handle this better than others and have become rabid pro-statehood and feel as American as you do.

    2. Others prefer a different type of statehood where the predominantly Spanish culture of PR is preserved at all costs.

    3. Others prefer the status quo --- "The populares" This are folks who are ambivalent about the whole thing.

    4. And lastly the independentistas or nationalists. They want out all cost. The problem is that many of the nationalists are socialists and many Puertoricans do not like that type of system.

    But, in the end the main reason is nationalism. Of course this is something you see all over the planet and many wars have been fought over this sentiment. It seems that Nationalism is right up there with religion as they main cause of most wars in world history. Of course sometimes these two are tied together.

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    • #3
      Senor Gringo, I am Nationalist.

      I don't want Puerto Rico to be part of the Union, but be an allied and partner of the USA.

      Like the USA battled its freedom from the Brits, just to be a free nation. Many Puerto Ricans wants the same for Puerto Rico.

      I would like to see Puerto Rico being a independent nation. Be able to negotiate with other countries just like the USA is doing.

      To decide our own destiny and not being regulate or imposed by the USA. Be able to trade with the USA and share.

      It will be stupid to become a Republic and stay away from the greatest nation in the world which is the USA.

      Puerto Rico as an independent nation can become an example of democracy in the world with the USA standing behind 100%.

      It will probe to other nations that democracy is good and the USA can get all the credit for.

      If we become a state, we can't do that. We will be under the federal laws and everything will be imposed to us.

      Puerto Rico can be independent. The people is educated and train on high technology. Many countries will benefit directly from Puerto Rico by exchanging students, technology, and industries. With the USA, we can't do that.


      • #4

        I have no concerns with nacionalists like you. But, we must admit that many other nationalists think otherwise. Here is part of what another nationalist posted to me in another thread:

        First, I could care less about what the East Germans and the Russkies are qualified or not to do. They are traitors to communism. And therefore they failed to apply communism correctly to the concrete conditions in their former countries. You will learn nothing significant about scientific socialisms from such traitors as they are.

        I will be frank with you. I do not like communism because I know for a fact that it won't work. I have plenty of historical data on my side to back up the statement. Here is another quote:

        Therefore, all things in such a country are ON LOAN FROM THE PEOPLE, and that means that private property is irrational and unsocial, and is abolished in principle and in action. This will take place even if it means squeezing the remains of the capitalists either permanently or until they cease and desist from trying to swindle the People by theft.

        You can bet the house that this wing of the independence movement will try very hard to impose this philosophy. And one must not forget that all socialists follow the "The end justifies the means" philosophy. This type of thinking is not much different than the mindset of those Arab pilots who crashed the planes on the twin towers. Many pro-independence Puertoricans are afraid of this and that is why they vote with Muņoz Marîn.

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        • #5
          Mister "Gringo":

          I hope you are not just a Puerto Rican firefighter from Philadelphia in disguise...

          Let me say it plainly:
          • only 2.5% of Puerto Ricans want full-fledged independence,
          • and another 0.3% want Puerto Rico to be an "
          That leaves most of us 97.2% of Puerto Ricans who all want to remain PERMANENTLY a Part of the USA, of which we are basically split down the middle as far as becoming a STATE, or just staying as we are (a freeloading "commonwealth"...), just like most Americans are split down the middle between Repubicans and Democrats...

          So DEFINITELY, most Puerto Ricans are proud of their American Citizenship .

          Only a tiny portion of our Puerto Rican population is ashamed of our Citizenship, which if you think about it in percentage terms, it is even smaller than the percentage the CDC in Atlanta calculates from the American public to be homosexual
          (3%). Now, gay independentistas should not get angry at me for pointing out the similarities. After all, there are many nice gay people who are not angry or threatening with violence their fellow human beings, just like there are many nice independentistas who are not terrorists.

          Now the question is WHY haven't we become a STATE?

          If you analyze that question in depth, anybody with guts comes with the simple answer: because the Puerto Rican leadership and the United States Government like things as they are.

          You see, most upper class Puerto Ricans controlling the Puerto Rican community dislike the idea of sharing power and wealth with the rest of both Puerto Ricans who are not as well connected as they are, and with Anglo-American newcomers. Puerto Rico is a GOOD OLD BOY NETWORK Paradise, with only a few wealthy families with close ties to SPAIN controlling the way power, money and jobs flow in our tiny Island. This is why even most of the leaders of the so called "
          independence" movement DO NOT have a dark skin, and most even have blue eyes. This may bother you, since you perhaps may feel uncomfortable with the issue of RACE been raised here, but it is a REAL problem. So much so, that in most wealthy Puerto Rican families the issue of CROSS-RACIAL marriage is an unspoken TABOO...

          And, most political figures in the US Government have a guttural fear of adding a mostly Hispanic STATE to the Union, one which could have as many as 7 Congressmen
          (2 Senators and 5 Representatives) to represent it. Puerto Rico in theory could wield more power than 2/3 of the States . That, has been an unspoken secret in the halls of Congress for ages.
          • And, even Democrats, who love to portray themselves as pro-minority, have been the staunchest enemies of Puerto Rican STATEHOOD.
            • This is either the ROBERT BYRD Factor, or the potentially embarrassing fact that most Hispanics that PAY FEDERAL TAXES love to vote Republican.

          So, in REALITY, you have missed the FACTS on Puerto Rican politics. Perhaps here you have gained a twisted sense of "
          REALITY", which by the way is what the owners of this place want you to think .

          Respectfully and with mercy, to the un-initiated Gringo,
          • yours truly Manny .


          • #6

            Excellent points! I have forgotten the consequences of PR been a state (with its two senators and congressmen).

            My impression is that many Puertoricans who are pro-independence would be crazoid American left wingers. However, I once heard Romero Barcelo speaking and he sounded left wing in terms of US politics.

            In the end one could safely say that if we become a state there will be yet another divide. The conservatives and the liberals. I am not sure of how many Puertoricans are on the DOE in the island--- do you know? Those would be big time democrats. The ones concerned with race politics would also be democrats.

            In any event could you tell me who are those rich Puertoricans with strong Spanish ties? I am just a poor boy with Corsican ancestry.

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            • #7
              You know them Stan:

              They go once every 5 to 10 years to Spain to visit their cousins, and they do have the best Real Estate in the Island, both in the Metropolitan Zone and well as the rest of the country-side...


              • #8
                Are you talking about El Espaņolito Rafael, the former gallito (el padre del pollo)? I noticed that the number of Spanish banks went thru the roof after his trips to "Madre Patria".

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                • #9
                  Thank you all for your comments and helping me understand the different groups that you are in support of.

                  I am not a Puerto Rican Fire Fighter from Philly, just a plain American(7th generation) interested a little in Puerto Rican Politics.

                  I was un-aware of how much representation Puerto Rico would have in the congress and senate if Puerto Rico was to become a state. Certaintly Puerto Rico would be a powerful state. Something for those who want to become a state could be proud of.

                  I understand Nationalism views and taking pride in being who you are, and as such that should never be taken away from a human being.

                  *My only opinion to (State hood or Nationalism):
                  If a Colony can support itself economically and governmentally without further expounding the hardships of its people. Then it might be in the interests of the Colony to do so.

                  If a Colony is unable to support itself and by that fact, would then increase the hardships of its people for many years, then Nationalism anywhere would not be the answer.




                  • #10
                    "If a Colony is unable to support itself and by that fact, would then increase the hardships of its people for many years, then Nationalism anywhere would not be the answer."

                    Makes sense to me! After all we are a tiny dot in the world map with no resources. Why not be attached to the big boy in the planet? I am sure we can contribute a lot. In fact we already have; my dad fought the Germans in WWII and almost lost a leg. BTW, he then became educated using the GI BILL.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Senor_Gringo
                      If a Colony is unable to support itself and by that fact, would then increase the hardships of its people for many years, then Nationalism anywhere would not be the answer.
                      That is true Senor Gringo.

                      If Puerto Rico becomes independent, it will not happen overnight.

                      There are plans to achieve the full independence in a 10 years transition regulated by the USA from the date the Congress approve the Act.

                      That means that the USA will keep its eyes on Puerto Rico while it gradually becomes a sovereign nation.

                      Just like the Panama Canal Treaty in 1979. The USA gradually released the canal until it became 100% part of Panama in December 31, 1999.

                      So, there will be some safeguards about that.

                      That is why I feel 100% that independence for Puerto Rico can be done and it will be both beneficial for the USA and PR.

                      Now, in reference to Statehood, the same process will apply but in a short term probably of 3-5 years transition.


                      • #12

                        Just like the Panama Canal Treaty in 1979. The USA gradually released the canal until it became 100% part of Panama in December 31, 1999.

                        Have you heard the latest about Panama? Things are not as rosy as when the US ran the canal. The economy is not what it used to be and they really miss those dollars. And we are talking about a large country with a canal! I have been told they have the Chinnese running the canal for them.

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                        • #13
                          America Is Beautiful But Not Always Just

                          Senor Gringo:

                          I am pro-Statehood. I consider myself an American patriot and have a great respect for this country.

                          Unfortunately, America has a poor history of the treatment of it's US born minorities, whether they be blacks, Puerto Ricans, Native peoples, Guamanian, and others.

                          The land of the free and the home of the brave has often had a sign that says, no blacks or spiks welcome.

                          At the same time I am aware that a lot of progress and effort has been undertaken by good hearted people in this country to right some of the historical wrongs. This is a good thing.

                          The case of Puerto Rico is very unique and has no equal in US history. Bear in mind that we are talking about an island with approximately 4 million US citizens, [More then many states], who live under a unique legal status called a Free Associated State, [not a commonwealth at it is often called; as you know Pennsylvania is a Commonwealth but Puerto Rico is not it's political equal]. Of those four million, about half are happy with the status quo. The other half wants Statehood. A small minority want independence. Until this internal conflict and dilemma is resolved, nothing will change in Puerto Rico.

                          As a non-Puerto Rican I invite you to read the writings of Luis Maldonado Denis or many other writers of Puerto Rican history to gain more insight.

                          Above all understand that, Puerto Ricans have a strong sense of national pride, even though the island is not a soverign nation.

                          At the same time you should recognize that many Americans are very discontent with the status quo in American; particularly when it comes to the minority groups I mention.

                          I also urge you to visit as many Native American reservations as you can to appreciate the isolation that Americans can feel in their own country. This can help in understanding the Puerto Rican mindset.

                          Thank you for your interest. It is not often that Americans really think about Puerto Ricans or the plight of our community.


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Stanley

                            Just like the Panama Canal Treaty in 1979. The USA gradually released the canal until it became 100% part of Panama in December 31, 1999.

                            Have you heard the latest about Panama? Things are not as rosy as when the US ran the canal. The economy is not what it used to be and they really miss those dollars. And we are talking about a large country with a canal! I have been told they have the Chinnese running the canal for them.

                            Stan, the canal is obsolete. There are not that many ships crossing since the 80's, and the number drop more as the ships are getting bigger.

                            The USA build a oil pipeline in the Costa Rican border to send oil from the Pacific to the Atlantic. That killed half of the ships that used the Canal.

                            One main reason why the USA abandoned the canal. When the Canal Zone was there, the USA was loosing money. I remember seeing in the town of Balboa on one warehouse wall "Canal Zone State 51".

                            In September 30, 1979, the Canal Zone passed to Panamanian power. All the Zonians (Us Citizens born in the Canal Zone) born there were given the choice of move to the USA or become Panamanian citizens.

                            The Zonians splitted in half. The ones that stayed in Panama had families in the republic side.

                            These were Americans citizens that decided to stay in Panama and still there.

                            After "La Zona" passed to the Panamanian, the US and Panama responsibilities for the Canal was 10% for Panama and 90% for the USA.

                            Every year that number changed with US getting smaller and the Panama getting bigger.

                            There was second thoughts when the Panamanian Conflict happened in late 80's.

                            I lived in Panama 6 years from January 1978 to July 1984, I can tell you a lot from that beautiful country.


                            • #15
                              My opinion on PR statehood

                              Click here: Statehood = Hell