Puerto Rico

One Year Since Hurricane Maria In Puerto Rico: A Total National Tragedy, And Time For Puerto Rican Statehood

It has been one tragic year since Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, and its floods, winds, and the aftermath of very limited recovery efforts by the Trump Administration led to almost 3,000 deaths, making Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Louisiana, with its 1,800 deaths look minor by comparison.

The main job of government is to protect its population, not just from foreign foes and invasion, but also from natural disasters, and the Republican Party has set a horrible record of lack of concern and ineptness in dealing with natural disasters.

Witness Hurricane Andrew in 1992 in Florida under President George H. W. Bush; Hurricane Katrina in 2005 in Louisiana under President George W. Bush; and now Hurricane Maria in 2017 in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands under President Donald Trump.

Trump’s lack of concern is worst than the disasters under the two Bushes, and his racism is totally apparent, and the gall of him to throw paper towels on a brief visit a few weeks after the disaster shows just how despicable he is as a human being.

It is time for Puerto Rico, which is still treated as a colony, to apply for statehood, and in June of 2017 the island voted for statehood overwhelmingly, but a small percentage voted, but it should move forward expeditiously, and become the 51st state.

There is a statehood bill, that would make Puerto Rico a state by January 1, 2021, 19 days before the next Presidential inauguration.

Of course, the Republicans, if they keep control, will not wish to do so, as Puerto Rico would certainly be a Democratic state, and likely have two Democratic Senators and a few Democratic Congressmen, but it is the right thing to do, and soon.

Donald Trump And Hurricanes: Hurricane Maria In Puerto Rico, And Hurricane Florence Now Menacing The Carolinas And Virginia

Donald Trump has presided over the worst hurricane disaster in American history, with Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, leading to 3,000 deaths, the same as the attack on Al Qaeda on September 11, 2001.

He has the gall and the lack of empathy to claim a “great success”, and it is clear Trump is totally delusional, and criminal in his lack of taking responsibility for the disaster that could have been handled better by the Federal Emergency Management Agency,

And now, just in advance of hurricane season, and the menacing Hurricane Florence about to assault North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia, in what some think could be the worst hurricane in memory, it has been revealed that $10 million has been transferred to ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) to arrange for more detentions of immigrants than already has occurred, marking the greatest such detention facilities since the Japanese Americans in World War II.

It is a criminal act to promote continued and expanded detention, and it is also criminal to take funds out of FEMA as we face another hurricane disaster season.

There has to be, eventually, full accountability for these crimes for top officials in the Trump Administration, and if the nation cannot protect its own citizens from harm from natural disasters, then how can they protect us from harm from a foreign foe, from terrorism?

That is the number one question to ask of the Trump Administration, which is proving to be more incompetent on hurricanes than even George W. Bush on Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Louisiana in 2005.

The Miracle Of Andrew Gillum, The Democratic Nominee For Governor In Florida

Today has been a glorious day, one of the best this author has experienced in a long time.

What seemed impossible happened, as Andrew Gillum, the African American Mayor of Tallahassee, Florida (the state capitol), overcame the disadvantages of no money, no winning of any polls, no advertising to speak of. He triumphed over four other candidates, all with tons of money, and polls and advertising on a large scale.

So now we have three African American candidates for Governor, with Stacey Abrams in Georgia, and Ben Jealous in Maryland, along with Andrew Gillum.

Gillum was an unknown, and this author did not vote for him, assuming he had no chance to win, but now that he has won, this author is thrilled beyond belief, and ready to help Andrew Gillum win and bring a Democratic government on the executive level to the Sunshine State, the third largest behind California and Texas.

Andrew Gillum is educated, intelligent, a great orator, with great charisma and presence, a sense of humor, exudes confidence and has had executive experience, and displays a humility that is very appealing.

Gillum is someone to take seriously, as since independents could not vote in Florida for either party’s nomination, the potential for a “blue wave” is there, with not only independents, but also moderates in the Republican Party who are unhappy with the Donald Trump led Republican Party and its candidate, a nasty, mean spirited, arrogant three term Congressman, Ron DeSantis, who already the day after the primary, is using the word “monkey”, appealing to white supremacy and white racists.

Additionally, the fact that Gillum is only 39 will appeal to African Americans, young people, educated suburbanites, and the growing Puerto Rican population after Hurricane Irma, and with them being citizens of the US, and able to vote against Trump, who was shameful in his treatment of the hurricane disaster on that island. Now we are learning that 2,975 died in Puerto Rico, 60 percent higher than died in Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005.

To make the situation even more impressive, the Attorney General nominee for the Democrats is also an African American, Sean Shaw, and the candidate for State Agricultural Commissioner is Nikki Fried, who is Jewish. So we have a truly diverse ticket, and all this should help Senator Bill Nelson hold off Governor Rick Scott, who is spending three times what Nelson is able to raise, for his campaign.

But the belief is that Gillum, Shaw, and Fried could carry Nelson on their backs, and lead to an all Democratic victory in Florida in November.

The Disaster Of Puerto Rico, 4,645 Dead, More Than September 11: A Violation Of Human Rights Perpetrated By The Trump Administration

The tragic disaster of Puerto Rico, whose population are US Citizens, is a massive violation of human rights perpetrated by the Trump Administration.

The total of 4.645 dead, not the 64 first stated, is an unbelievable loss of life, nearly two and a half times the loss of life in Hurricane Katrina (1833), and one and a half times the losses of September 11 (2996).

And yet, nothing is said or no apologies offered, or mistakes acknowledged, by Donald Trump or any of his underlings in the cabinet, and also in the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which has the primary responsibility in natural disasters.

There is no conscience, no sorrow, no regrets, as Trump and his advisers are openly racist against Puerto Ricans.

If this loss of life had occurred in Texas or Florida, we would have heard mass denunciation of the lack of response, but the Republican Party in Congress has nothing to say about this great tragedy.

And with the hurricane season upon us, and reconstruction of facilities not accomplished in Puerto Rico, there is great fear of the final decimation of the island, which deserves equal treatment and consideration as much as any state and any other group of people.

If the government cannot guarantee the safety and security of its own population, then the government has failed the ultimate test—protection of national security of all of its citizens.

On this ground alone, Donald Trump and his ilk should be forced out of office, and indicted, convicted, and imprisoned for basic violation of human rights!

The American Presidency And Racism Nothing New, But Donald Trump’s Comment Way Beyond The Pale, And Should Force His Resignation!

The American Presidency and racism is nothing new, but Donald Trump’s comment about Haiti and the continent of Africa being a “shit hole” is way beyond the pale, and should force his resignation as a moral and ethical disgrace!

We know that nine of the first 12 Presidents were slave owners.

We know that Andrew Jackson slaughtered native Americans, and forced thousands to Oklahoma, the disgraceful “Trail of Tears”, and condemned abolitionists and worked to prevent their literature from going through the US Mail.

We know that John Tyler and James K. Polk worked to expand slavery territory.

We know that Andrew Johnson was a white supremacist in a disgraceful way.

We know that Theodore Roosevelt was critical of the mass migration of Catholics and Jews (the “New Immigration”) to America, and did not care about racial discrimination in the South.

We know that Woodrow Wilson was a white supremacist, who segregated the nation’s capital by executive order and refused to give any honors for military service to African Americans, and looked at Japan and China as inferior nations.

We know that Franklin D. Roosevelt failed to take adequate action against the Holocaust that killed millions of Jews and others in World War II, and failed to move against racial discrimination, although his wife Eleanor did speak up and take whatever actions she could, as First Lady.

We know that Richard Nixon was antisemitic, and said biased statements against Jews and African Americans on the Watergate Tapes, which were recorded in the Oval Office.

We know there were other actions by Presidents which showed reluctance or refusal to take action against racism and antisemitism.

But Donald Trump, by his public utterance yesterday, and so many other statements and actions before he became President, and since he became President, is the most vile racist of them all, including his wish to deport tens of thousands of Haitians, Salvadorans, and Hondurans, and his lack of concern about the horrible damage done to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands during the hurricane season.

For that, Donald Trump will go down as the bottom of the list of all of our Presidents, and we MUST work to get him out of office before he does much more damage beyond what he has done!

Puerto Rican Migration To Florida In Two Months 200,000, Double Original Estimate: A Harbinger Of Florida Turning “Blue” In Future Presidential Elections

The effects of Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico will change future Presidential elections, with the Democratic Party winning the state in future contests for the White House.

Puerto Rico is losing a substantial portion of its citizenry due to the slow and inadequate response on the island to this natural disaster by the Trump Administration.

Some Puerto Ricans, all of whom are citizens of the US, and can register to vote immediately, have migrated to New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Illinois, but the vast majority, more than 200,00, double the original estimate, have moved to Florida, preferring warm weather.

Most have settled in Central Florida, in the Orlando and Tampa areas, with the Puerto Rican population having multiplied since the 2010 Census, while a lesser number have moved to South Florida.

As long as these citizens register and vote, the largest number will vote Democratic, and in close races for the White House, that can make a difference, and it could also, over time, affect state elections for Governor and other executive offices, as well as the state legislature.

When Florida becomes reliably “Blue”, it will add 29 electoral votes in the 2020 Presidential election, and more than that once reapportionment of seats based on the 2020 Census, and in time for the 2024 and 2028 Presidential elections.

And when the Hispanic vote of any part of Latin America becomes larger and reliably Democratic, except for Cuban Americans then Georgia, Arizona, and eventually Texas will be “Blue”, and the Republicans are doomed on the Presidential level.

Only by voter suppression and discrimination will the GOP have a chance to win, and one can be sure they will use every imaginable tactic to prevent Hispanic voting, so Democrats have to work incessantly to insure that Hispanics are not denied the right to vote, including law suits to stop this disgraceful tactic of the party that, more than ever, represents the Tea Party mentality.

Former Presidents George W. Bush And Barack Obama Come Out Against Trump, And Bush, Sr., Bill Clinton, And Jimmy Carter Are Also Opponents

Former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama both made speeches on Thursday, denouncing the policies and mentality of the Trump Presidency, but without mentioning his name.

Bush has never criticized his successor, Barack Obama, but he is clearly, along with his brother Jeb, and his parents George HW and Barbara Bush, willing to speak out against the nativism, nationalism, isolationism, and xenophobia of Donald Trump.

Obama has avoided direct attacks, but spoke in a similar vein as Bush.

Their opposition has been joined with utterances by Bill and Hillary Clinton, Jimmy Carter, and indirectly by the elder Bushes.

So all five living former Presidents have become critics of a man who has strongly attacked all of them.

And all five former Presidents are co-sponsors of a hurricane relief concert for the benefit of the victims in Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands. All five will be attending the Texas A & M concert this evening, and that will make for a rare photo of five living former Presidents, which has only been accomplished three times before–1861-1862 during the Civil War and the early Presidency of Abraham Lincoln; 1993-1994 in the first year of the Bill Clinton Presidency; and 2001-2004 during the second Bush Administration.

Additionally, all five former living Presidents will be with their wives, five former First Ladies—Rosalyn Carter, Barbara Bush, Hillary Clinton, Laura Bush, and Michelle Obama, an amazing development, since both the older Bush and Carter are now 93, and their wives are 92 and 90, respectively.

They are adding to their stature, as responsible and statesmanlike, something that Donald Trump is incapable of accomplishing.

Migration Of Puerto Ricans To US Mainland Will Transform Florida Politics Over Next Few Years In Favor Of Democratic Party

It is predictable, that as a result of Hurricane Maria devastating Puerto Rico, we will see a massive migration of people from Puerto Rico to the mainland Unites States.

As citizens of the United States, all that it takes is a plane or ship trip to the mainland, and they are not immigrants.

The vast majority of migrating Puerto Ricans are likely to end up in Central Florida, around Orlando and Tampa, where recent settlement of Puerto Ricans has gone in the past few years.

Some will also also settle in South Florida as well, and additionally, many will go to New York City, where the original major population from decades ago from the island settled.

Some will end up in New Jersey, and in Philadelphia and Chicago, as major metropolitan areas.

The effect of this Puerto Rican population wave will have a dramatic effect on Florida politics, as long as these migrants choose to vote, after they have seen the lack of consideration or concern by President Donald Trump toward their island.

In general, Puerto Ricans, as other Hispanic groups, except Cubans, tend to vote Democratic historically.

So already, there are signs that Florida Governor Rick Scott, planning to challenge Senator Bill Nelson for his Senate seat next year, is showing signs of interest and concern about welcoming these migrants.

One can be sure that Scott is playing politics, as he still remains one of the absolutely worst Governors in America, and has shown little interest in any kind of assistance to the poor, minorities and making life better for Floridians, other than the wealthy.

But it is clear cut that we might see a major transformation in Florida politics, which could help swing the national election for President in future years in favor of the Democrats, as Florida had the third most electoral votes and will have more by the 2024 and 2028 elections.

56 Percent In Quinnipiac Poll Say Trump Not Fit To Be President, But Republicans In Poll Are Totally Delusional And Clueless

Donald Trump is coming apart at the seams, and America sees it.

In a new Quinnipiac poll, 56 percent say Trump is unfit to be President, including 57 percent of Independents and 94 percent of Democrats. At the same time, 84 percent of Republicans say he is fit, which makes one wonder what is wrong psychologically with Republicans, who would never have tolerated such incompetence in Barack Obama or Bill Clinton.

63 percent of women said Trump was unfit, while men were evenly divided at 49-49 because of the strong support for Trump among Republican men.

On race relations, Trump had 94 percent of African Americans, 66 percent of Hispanics, and 55 percent among whites against his policies.

Trump remains disapproved in the 60s over all, while low 30s to low 40s is his positive limit.

No President has ever since World War II had such negative numbers at any time, let alone in his first year in office.

With Trump’s disgraceful handling of Puerto Rico relief, it is time for pressure to be brought that he should resign the Presidency in disgrace.

But it seems at this point unlikely that he will follow Harry Truman’s advice: “The buck stops here!”, and take responsibility for the disaster of his brief Presidency.

The Urgent, Required Need To Rebuild Puerto Rico And The US Virgin Islands As A “Marshall Plan”

America has a major challenge that it has no choice but to meet in a committed and responsible manner.

That is, we MUST spend whatever it takes in public funds to rebuild two of our territories–the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands– both decimated by Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria within the last two weeks.

The population of these two island nation territories are US citizens, nearly 3.7 million and a bit over 100,000 respectively.

There has been total destruction, and what is now needed is a “Marshall Plan”, similar to what the Unites States invested in the rebuilding of Western Europe after World War II.

There is no way to evade this responsibility, but we also must realize that the likelihood of a mass migration to the US mainland is likely, as it will take years to rebuild.

And many who migrate will decide to remain permanently in North America, and that is their right as US Citizens, as they are NOT immigrants.

Expect Florida in particular to be dramatically affected by growth in Puerto Rican migration, which has been rapidly increasing in recent years, particularly in the Orlando area of Central Florida.

We must greet and welcome these citizens as they come to the mainland, and do whatever we can, as individuals, to smooth the transition of people, who in many cases, are shell shocked by the horrible experiences they have had in these past two weeks.

We cannot allow the Republican Congress to ignore this plight, and for Donald Trump to bully these newcomers as a group of mostly Hispanic immigrants, and more important than tax cuts for the wealthy, is to impose tax increases on those best able to afford it, and who have had such massive tax breaks by legislation passed under Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush.