Opinion piece: an open letter to Trump about Puerto Rico


I didn’t really think your response to Puerto Rico could get worse than your embarrassing barrage of accusatory tweets towards Puerto Ricans, but I was, as oft happens with this particular administration, once again proven wrong. In case you didn’t know, the Constitution states that it is the federal government’s responsibility to provide for the general welfare. This means stepping in to help people when there are problems they cannot fix themselves. The humanitarian crisis created by the hurricanes is one example of this. It is your job to help.

Between praising your own administration for its relief efforts (which, in Puerto Rico, have been almost non-existent) and calling Puerto Ricans lazy, your visit to the island was, quite frankly, a disaster. Tip: saying that Hurricane Katrina was worse than Irma and Maria does nothing to alleviate the situation, and actually makes it worse. There are 3.4 million people without food and water, and almost 100% of the island is without electricity. Millions of lives have been permanently altered by this destruction, and it is incredibly offensive to imply that the people of Puerto Rico are in some way not deserving of help because 1,800+ people did not die as a result.

As if the negative PR you would have received with that alone wouldn’t have been enough, you also saw fit to throw paper towels at residents as if they were animals. Nice job. So, all in all, maybe your photo-op visit didn’t go as well as planned. Between mistaking the representative of the Air Force and the Coast Guard and discrediting the local government’s response (when it is clear that they have done more than you have to help), the visit seemed like a slap in the face.

Thank you, Donald Trump, for once again making it very clear that the Trump Administration sees its most vulnerable citizens as second class and undeserving of help. We get the message.


A (perpetually) disappointed American.

Image Credits: Vox

Statistic Credits: Salon


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