I have been in Puerto Rico for almost a year now, and I have saw the good the bad and the ugly regarding Puerto Rico. I have to state for the record that I have nothing but respect for Puerto Rican culture. This is a culture that you can be in and your kids will learn the value of humanity, kindness and manners. Puerto Ricans are hard working people, and this is (was) a beautiful island.
People in Puerto Rico for the most part do not value money and tangible items over neighbors and family. It is a really sweet and humble life here. Not to say that there are not many people here that do well and work hard. Many people work very long hours and acquire very nice things. But for the most part that type of thing seems to come secondary to Puerto Ricans.
This is why we came here actually. In fact it was sort of by accident that we ended up in Puerto Rico. We bought a boat in St. Thomas and started sailing to Mexico, but we broke down in Fajardo Puerto Rico. We wanted to be in Mexico for the same reasons that we love Puerto Rico, which is latin culture. It is everything that I described above, which I became aware of when I was a young teenager working in agriculture digging ditches for the irrigation company.
At this time in my life I worked summers for the irrigation company along side mostly Mexican migrant workers, and it was at this time that I learned how warm and friend latin culture is.
So when we ended up in Puerto Rico and we found everything that we were looking for in Mexico, and it was attainable without a Visa or new citizenship, we decided to stay. We love it so much, and we will never leave without having something like a Category 5 hurricane change our minds.
Which is what this comes to. We are trying to leave Puerto Rico now, only because of how bad it is getting here after the hurricane.
In the town of Lajas over 100 people have died in a small town of only 25,000 people. The smaller and more rural towns are the owns most harshly effected. The city of San Juan is getting back to normal, yet there are some very hard hit areas of San Juan that are also lacking resources and this is the capital, according to San Juan mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz.
Living in a rural community in Puerto Rico now, and also having lived in larger communities in the past like Fajardo, it is obvious to me that some of the problems regarding Puerto Rico’s infrastructure and workforce come from trade tariffs enforced by the US federal government like the Jones Act. These tariffs, or at least the Jones Act has been temporarily suspended in the aftermath of the hurricane while Puerto Rico rebuilds. But this type of trade restriction has dampered the territories trade and business, and it has caused for many companies and many workers to flee to the USA for more opportunity.
Now comes the biggest storm in recorded history in the Atlantic, and it wipes out Puerto Rico. Then the Jones Act is suspended and other countries as well as the US sends supplies to help us recover. But.. There are no drivers to drive the supplies to the hard hit and rural areas where people are dying. Why? Because a large majority of the drivers have moved to the USA prior to the storm to seek more opportunity.
However when Trump addresses this issue, Trump says that:
“…want everything to be done for them when it should be a community effort. 10,000 Federal workers now on Island doing a fantastic job.”
…want everything to be done for them when it should be a community effort. 10,000 Federal workers now on Island doing a fantastic job.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 30, 2017
I made a video back in January 2017, and I spoke about some of Donald Trump’s policies back then. While I agree with him on some things. This is one thing that I very much disagree with him on, and I truly believe he is missing the real problem.
This is the video that I made to address Donald Trump’s tweets to explain this to him better, from someone that lives here.
I truly believe that the Jones act and other financial structures that are guided by the US government is what is causing the waning economy in Puerto Rico.
As for my previous comments from January 2017. I still stand by that.
“Latin Americans are the hardest working people that I have ever met”