politics

After Blaming Puerto Rico’s Infrastructure And Economy, Trump Says Hurricane Aid Can’t Last ‘Forever’

Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

This week, President Donald Trump issued another blow to the already battered island of Puerto Rico, claiming that he can’t keep aid there “forever.” Just last week, Trump was shooting paper towel free-throws at hurricane survivors and taking shots at the mayor of San Juan, Carmen Yulín Cruz, who was waist deep in water helping Puerto Ricans in need. Trump then golfed and dedicated his trophy to the victims of the disaster. Oh, and he also “celebrated” Hispanic Heritage Month by pronouncing “Puerto Rico” with some bullshit accent. Worst of all, he blamed survivors for not doing enough, calling them lazy by saying they want “everything to be done for them.”

Trump said Puerto Rico’s infrastructure is to blame for the lack of electricity, food and clean drinking water on the island.

He said there is a limit on how much help they can provide to the starving, stranded, and battered survivors of Hurricane Maria.

Come on, they can’t be there “forever.” The superlative “forever” is so condescendingly juvenile it is maddening. FOREVER? As in until the end of time and then some? Like eternally? The end of the number line? The unimaginable span of time that goes on infinitely? How about at least as long as Hurricane Harvey survivors? Or at least until people aren’t dying?

Carmen Yulín Cruz came through on Twitter and clapped back much more gracefully and intelligently than I would have.

Cruz then released a much more in-depth and biting letter, saying in all caps: “Help us. Without robust and consistent help, we will die.”

“Tweet away your hate to mask your administration’s mishandling of this humanitarian crisis. While you are amusing yourself throwing paper towels at us, your compatriots and the world are sending love and help our way. Condemn us to a slow death of non-drinkable water, lack of food, lack of medicine while you keep others eager to help from reaching us since they face the impediment of the Jones Act,” wrote Cruz.

Others chimed in to underline how dire the situation in Puerto Rico continues to be.

Governor Ricardo Rossello spoke out against losing support on the island.

As did other politicians, like California Congresswoman Nanette D. Barragán.

Congressman Don Beyer made sure to support staying in Puerto Rico, as well as reminding everyone that the US Virgin Islands are still suffering, too.

FEMA’s deputy director of public affairs Eileen Lainez posted this message to Twitter in response to Trump.

“FEMA will be w/Puerto Rico, USVI, every state, territory impacted by a disaster every day, supporting throughout their response & recovery,” posted Lainez.

And according to the New York Times, even though Trump claims that aid won’t be there “forever,” several organizations have said otherwise.

“Other agencies were committed to long-term efforts as well. The United States Army Corps of Engineers, for example, is helping rebuild the electrical grid badly damaged by the storm, a construction effort that could take years. In addition, other agencies helping in recovery efforts, like the Coast Guard and Customs and Border Protection, have a permanent presence on the island and are unlikely to go anywhere.”

Hopefully Puerto Ricans aren’t waiting “forever” to get help.


[H/T] New York Times

READ: He Called Trump Out On Twitter And Is Owning Every Word He Tweeted About His Puerto Rico Response


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This Is What People Mean When They Say They Want Congress To Pass A Clean Dream Act

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This Is What People Mean When They Say They Want Congress To Pass A Clean Dream Act

Harrie van Veen / Molly Adams / Flickr

A clean Dream Act means passing the Dream Act as it currently stands.

On Sept. 5, 2017, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Trump administration was rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) progran. In response, there has been renewed attention to the Dream Act. This important immigration bill was first introduced by Sen. Dick Durbin from Illinois in 2001. Since then, the bill has seen changes and amendments. But what does a clean Dream Act mean? What makes it clean or unclean?

Ever since news broke that Rep. Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Chuck Schumer met with President Trump in private, speculation swirled about what they discussed. In her statement regarding the meeting, Pelosi mentioned that there was a deal with Trump to preserve the tenets of DACA while providing a border security package without the wall. The explanation was vague enough to prompt the undocumented community, led by DACA recipients, to raise the stakes and demand a clean Dream Act. Many feared that in order for Pelosi and Schumer to make their deal work, there would be an increase in deportations of undocumented immigrants not protected by DACA.

“Our message to the Dreamers is that we understand that their futures are not bargaining chips to build a wall across America,” Rep. Joaquin Castro said. “We want to do something that they can be proud of also. It’s impossible to say what exactly that will look like, but we want it to be something that people can be proud of.”

So, what does “clean” mean in clean Dream Act?

CREDIT: mitú

As is sits right now, the Dream Act has the potential to impact millions of lives outside of the DACA population. Essentially, those who are directly tied to the Dream Act or DACA are calling on Congress to pass the bill as is, without stipulations, making it clean. The fear echoed by many in the undocumented community is that allowing for things to be attached to the Dream Act, like increased border security and the border wall, could negatively impact them.

“We don’t know what a not-clean Dream Act would look like and nothing will be official until it is official,” says Maria Praeli, an immigration policy associate for FWD.us and a DACA recipient. “We all know the current Dream Act that exist, and that for it to be clean it would have to be passed just as it is. If it was to be attached to something else, we don’t know what that would look like.”

Praeli advises anyone concerned about a clean Dream Act to continue to call their representatives and ask them to either vote for a clean Dream Act or the Dream Act.

So, to recap. A clean Dream Act means passing the current Dream Act of 2017 as is without adding anything to it. It’s not a different bill or new iteration.

CREDIT: Broad City / Giphy

Since the Trump administration first announced the recession of DACA, 21,000 people have lost their DACA status because they couldn’t renew by the Oct. 5 deadline. Without action from Congress, we will see more young people lose their ability to work and go to school, and more people afraid to report sexual assaults, rape or other violent crimes out of fear of deportation. Trump’s administration set a deadline of March 5, 2018 for Congress to act and pass the Dream Act of 2017.

If you would like to contact your representatives and senators in a simple and convenient way, click here.


READ: Get To Know The Dream Act Of 2017 And How We Got To This Important Bill

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