When Cubans arrived in major numbers to Miami, especially in the early 60s, the Old Guard did not welcome them with open arms. Cubans encountered a great deal of racism, redlining, and rejection.
Luckily the US federal government had a vested interest in showcasing their “American Success Story,” so Cubans received many SBA loans and other small business assistance programs, to make sure that this “success story” occurred.
But as human beings, every Cuban remembered the sting of raised eyebrows and whispered comments, whenever they entered a room of “established” Americans.
For that reason, the Miami New Times should be more sensitive to Puerto Ricans in Florida.
In a recent article titled “Puerto Rico is Broke: What You Need to Know About Looming Bankruptcy,” the Miami New Times got a few facts wrong. It claimed that Puerto Rico owes $79 billion (not $73 billion) and that “millions” of Puerto Ricans are living in Florida.
But they did something worse. The entire article dealt with the devastating problems in Puerto Rico: a sinking economy, soaring crime rate, massive outmigration, inept government. Then after reciting all these grave issues, the article ended with this:
How are Puerto Ricans dealing with all of this? About as you’d expect:
“This is fine.”
A word to the Miami New Times: this is not fine.
Puerto Ricans do not enjoy getting kicked in the head, and taxed to death, and forced off their own island.
They do not enjoy migrating across the sea, and trying to start a new life, with anxiety and uncertainty defining their entire existence…only to have you say…
“This is fine.”
What is happening to Puerto Ricans is not fine.
It is not a Twitter joke, or a Miami New Times cartoon.
It is real life…in many cases a desperate life…and you have no right to trivialize or defame it.