1. Do you think Puerto Rico should become the 51st state of the United States, remain a territory of the United States, or become an independent country? Why?
Puerto Rico is considered one of the most beautiful Caribbean islands within the US territory. Puerto Ricans since the year 1917 have been citizens of US but recently the island legal status together with its relationship with the US has continued to be a subject of great controversy. For instance, they pay taxes, serve in the military but lack the right to take part in the US voting. Most of the citizens have thus shown dissatisfaction with their current political status. In the 2012 referendum, the Puerto Ricans thus wanted their independence from Washington and make Puerto Rico become the 51st state in the US.
Puerto Rico should become the 51st state of the US rather than remain the territory of the US since for years has been a colony and not a commonwealth. First, focusing on the American Public Opinion, it is evident that Puerto Ricans were not treated equality as the American citizens. For instance, Senator William B. Bate referred to them as a heterogeneous mass of mongrels who could not do anything useful rather than head hunt who were addicted to cannibalism. By being considered as savages, it is evident that they were not treated equally. Further, they were considered as highly uneducated and inferior.
Secondly, the economy of the island is highly chaotic and has been reported to have crashed public debt of about $ 73 billion implying that the islands relationship with the US is highly dysfunctional and harmful hence the need for them to get out of the US territory. Focusing on the economic incentives, it has been established that Puerto Rican debt instruments are triple tax exempt, therefore; investors and bondholders are not expected to pay federal, local or even state taxes on them. They believed that tax benefit would rapidly disappear in the event the island is turned into a state hence limiting the islands success. The only way to aid them is to make them independent. The island has been sidelined politically for many years. The island has a population of 3.6 million represented by only two US senators and 4-5 congresspersons to Washington, DC. They are thus under-represented and their statehood would never pass. There is the need to make them the 51st state in order to have a fair political representation.
2. Why do you think the outlaw hero, such as Pancho Villa, Joaquin Murrieta or Gregorio Cortez, is such a powerful figure in Hispanic culture?
The outlaw heroes are considered a powerful figure in the Hispanic culture because of the role they played. For instance, Pancho Villa was one of the Mexican revolutionary leaders who took the front position to advocate for the poor and further he advocated for them to have agrarian reform. Despite the fact that most f these outlaw heroes such as Murrieta and Gregorio Cortez were killers, revolutionary leaders , and even bandits, they are still remembered as folk hero based on their deeds specifically related to advocating for the rights of the poor. Most of these outlaw heroes such as Pancho Villa used to steal from the rich and then give the proceeds to the poor. Some of these outlaw heroes further were considered notoriety as bandits and further had the prowess to escape capture essential in the process of planning a revolution. They trained their groups with these skills essential in the guerilla fight during the revolution.
There are certain unique factors that were considered to make an outlaw into a hero. Further, they were believed to have core things in common that attracted the publics interest and sympathy. Most of them were victims of injustice especially from authorities hence were actually paying back. Secondly, most of these outlaws were after helping the common people in the region who were considered to be oppressed. Thirdly, most of these outlaw heroes were sacrificing their lives for the political stance. The legendary figure such Robin Hood is believed to have gained huge followers as a result of the mounting grief he caused to those in the authority over the commoners who were often oppressed. The majority of them are considered relevant in the Hispanic culture for outlining the grievances the government had caused to the poor. The aimed at fighting any form of unjust treatment.
3. Describe some of the rights that Hispanics have fought for in the United States from the 1940's to the present day. What are your thoughts and reactions to this part of Hispanic history? What kind of discrimination do Hispanics in our community still face?
For over the years, the Hispanics have been fighting for various rights in the US. In the year 1941, the Hispanics fought for fair employment opportunities where the workers filed complaints from the southwest. This allowed most of them to be employed temporarily in the US forming low-cost labor. In the year 1945, they fought against segregation of their students in different schools. It was agreed that segregation was a violation of a childs constitutional right. In the 1950s most of them were being deported unfairly hence fought for their rights against discrimination based on their ethnic and class differences. In the year 1974, the Hispanics fought for their right to be allowed to vote. This allowed more than two million Hispanics to be registered in the first 20 years. In the year 1999, the Hispanics fought to protest against the proximity of the US exercise-bombings especially in the Puerto Rican island close to civilians and this is after very many years of environmental destruction that led to massive health problems. In the year 2016, they held protests and demonstrations in support of the immigrant rights and further protest against the growing resentment directed towards most of the undocumented workers. They further campaigned for the rights of the immigrants based on the huge contributions they made to the economy of US.
Focusing on the Hispanic history, I believe that most of the Hispanics were segregated and treated unfairly. It is clear that majority of them were denied access to important things over the years. In a more general view, they were treated as a lesser being that did not deserve to enjoy any human rights. In the modern days, most of the Hispanics faces discrimination focusing on their rights as immigrants. Most of the, are not treated equally as immigrants and further they often get deported unfairly.
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