All the proceeds from the remix will be used to help those affected by recent natural disasters.
Beyoncé has teamed up with Colombian star J Balvin on a remix of his already wildly successful song. The original “Mi Gente” video has already racked up nearly 900,000,000 views on YouTube since being released in June. In less than 24 hours, the remixed version has already broken 1,000,000 views. The song is being used to raise money to help the people that have been affected by the recent natural disasters in the Caribbean and Mexico. When the song was released, Beyoncé announced that all the proceeds she makes from the song will be going to help Puerto Rico, Mexico, and the other Caribbean islands suffering right now. She has also set up a separate fundraising effort here.
Beyoncé broke the news of her collaboration with J Balvin in one of her funky videos on Instagram.
It’s no secret that Puerto Ricans have been petitioning for statehood for as long as the island has been deemed a U.S. territory. But that doesn’t matter as much to Congress. Pues, it’s time to listen up, Congress, because a Gallup poll has recently shown that 66 percent of non-Puerto Rican Americans favor admitting the island into the Union.
That percentage average has remained constant since Gallup started asking the question in 1962. Only 7% of state-side Americans had no opinion and 27 percent opposed statehood.
Two years ago, Puerto Ricans polled at 97 percent in favor of statehood.
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Puerto Rico transferred into becoming a U.S. “territory” in 1898 after the Spanish-American War. Puerto Ricans pay for social security, income tax and other shared responsibilities of state residents, but they can’t sway the presidential election either way.
Forty-five percent of Republicans and 83 percent of Democrats support statehood.
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Given the corruption and its consequent protests underway in Puerto Rico, 45 has decided to chime in. In a tweet, President Trump said, “A lot of bad things are happening in Puerto Rico. The Governor is under siege, the Mayor of San Juan is a despicable and incompetent person who I wouldn’t trust under any circumstance, and the United States Congress foolishly gave 92 Billion Dollars for hurricane relief.”
Puerto Ricans who support Trump are responding by telling him that they want him to include Puerto Rico as a U.S. state.
Others think Puerto Rico would be a moral drain to the U.S. government.
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Puerto Rico is calling on its Governor Ricardo Roselló to resign after a conversation was leaked during which he was using homophobic slurs against Ricky Martin, alongside misogynistic against San Juan’s mayor. The corruption is very real when it comes to Gov. Roselló, but he does not represent Puerto Rico any longer. Not in the hearts of Puerto Ricans after what is felt as a betrayal to the people.
Meanwhile, the aftermath of Hurricane Maria has fueled the desire for statehood for others.
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The delayed response from FEMA, and the shuffle of Puerto Ricans from FEMA assisted housing to the U.S. homeless shelter system has led many Boricuas to feel “less than” American. In fact, Puerto Ricans are 100% American.
Although the majority of all Americans support statehood, politics seems to be the greatest obstacle to democracy at the moment.
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Trump has been in a pissing contest between San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz for her criticism of his treatment of Boricuas. He did throw paper towels at us. On top of that, protests have lined the streets of San Juan demanding that Governor Ricardo Roselló resign.
Meanwhile, on the island, the very loud minority of folks who are anti-statehood are using the moment of chaos to express their views.
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Kelly Diaz tweeted a photo of “one of the protesters climbing to remove the American flag in front of the Puerto Rico Capitol and replace it with a black and white Puerto Rican flag.”
She aptly commented that it’s, “No surprise here, given that Ricky’s fiercest opponents belong to anti-statehood interest groups.”
With public opinion in favor, and the current events at hand, it may just be the perfect storm to put statehood on the political issue map.
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Democratic primaries are upon us and constituents are tweeting to the debate moderators requesting that the question of Puerto Rican statehood be included in the debate. So far, Julian Castro has been the first and only candidate to demand that #RickyRenuncia. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are notable candidates who have stated they want the Governor to answer to the Puerto Rican people.
It’s hard to imagine that Trump would look to Puerto Rico as a resource to the Union after Hurricane Maria, but it all depends on 2020.
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The running feud between Trump and Puerto Rican leadership means that the U.S. Senate, currently taken by the GOP, would likely never approve a bill for Puerto Rican statehood.
Although this guy has a very interesting new option for the island.
On Wednesday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) voiced her support for people in Puerto Rico, who have been protesting for nearly a week against corruption in the island’s government and calling for the resignation of Governor Ricardo Rosselló.
“I stand with Puerto Ricans who are taking to the streets this week to protest government corruption & Governor @RicardoRossello’s deeply offensive comments,” the senator said. “His actions are hurtful & undermine the public trust. He must answer to the Puerto Rican people.”
Protests in the US territory are still happening, with thousands of Puerto Ricans beginning to demonstrate on Saturday after Puerto Rico’s Center for Investigative Journalism published a damaging 889-page group chat between Rosselló and some members of his administration. The messages show Puerto Rican leaders making expletive-laden homophobic, transphobic and misogynistic comments about political rivals, celebrities and the people they represent as well as joking about the victims of Hurricane María and revealing how the administration attempted to cover up its inadequate response after the devastating storm.
The chat, which has been dubbed #TelegramGate, was the catalyst for the massive protests exploding on the archipelago and in diasporic communities across the US and world, but the people’s grievances go well beyond the governor’s foul language. Last week, the FBI arrested six people, including former Education Secretary Julia Keleher and former Puerto Rico Health Insurance Administration head Angela Avila-Marrero, on 32 counts of fraud and related charges. The scandal came to no surprise to the people, who have long been accusing the local government of stealing funds and calling for the removal of the unelected fiscal control board.
Additionally, the archipelago is still recovering from the category 4 hurricane, which claimed 4,645 lives, a number both the governor and President Trump long denied, compounded a $123 billion debt and humanitarian crises, displaced tens of thousands, forced hundreds of thousands more to flee, deepened impoverishment on an island where already nearly half of the population lived under the poverty line and gave rise to the contested privatization of public services.
Despite the many attacks against the Puerto Rican people, including verbal jabs from President Trump, an overwhelming majority of the 2020 contenders have been mum. Warren, a senator in Massachusetts, which has the fifth-largest population of Puerto Ricans in the country, behind New York, Florida, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, has supported the island in the past as well. In Congress, she was one of the leading voices to challenge Trump on his recovery efforts in the territory and called for more attention and respect to be given to the more than 3 million US citizens, albeit second-class, who inhabit the Caribbean island.
Since Wednesday, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) has also spoken out in support of the Puerto Rican people.
“Hawaii and Puerto Rico share many of the same experiences and stories. I stand with Puerto Ricans demanding change, who have had enough of government corruption, and who deserve a government of, by, and FOR the people,” Gabbard, who is also campaigning for the Democratic nomination, wrote Thursday in a post on Instagram. “El pueblo unido jamás será vencido. #RickyRenuncia”
Her remarks come as protesters in the state of Hawaii, a former US territory, fight to stop the construction of a $1.4 billion telescope on land sacred to Native Hawaiians.
While tens of thousands of protesters, including celebrities like Bad Bunny, Ricky Martin, Residente, La India, Benicio Del Toro, Daddy Yankee, Anuel, Farruko and more, and a small number of elected officials have urged Gov. Rosselló to step down, he has refused to resign. Apologizing for his “improper act,” he has insisted that he has not done anything illegal and believes he can restore confidence in his people.
In Puerto Rico, the people are not convinced, neither in their leadership on the island nor the federal government. While those living on the island cannot vote in the presidential election, they can cast their votes in the primaries. And they, and their family in the diaspora, which outnumbers those on the island and can vote in the general election, are taking note of those candidates who continue to ignore their plight.