Recently I was in a Detention Center learning about deportations and I was struck that ICE always used “procedure” to justify their actions—even if actions were inhumane. It hit me that I’ve heard this rhetoric used about Puerto Rico and even Higher Education. As I walked through the Detention Center I saw people who looked like my uncles and aunts in different colored sweats: Blue if they were low risk, Orange if this was their second time crossing the Border, Red if they we
As I look on at my beautiful Puerto Rico and see the people rising against colonialism and economic tyranny only to be beaten and illegally searched and arrested by a militarized police, I keep thinking about the 1937 Ponce Massacre where 19 protestors and 2 police officers were killed. On March 21, 1937 members of the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party held a peaceful march in Ponce, Puerto Rico to commemorate the abolition of slavery (1873), protest US colonialism, and challeng
In my experience, conversations about "Inter-religious engagement" often draw connections between Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and Buddhism but ignore/erase/marginalize African/African-Diasporic/Creole religions like Santería, Espiritismo, Yoruba, and Voodoo. I wonder what perpetuates this lack of engagement with African* religions in "inter-religious engagement." Is it colonial history that made Islam/Buddhism intelligible to westerners? Anti-blackness? Ignorance? The epist
Some days I feel like the "academy" asks us to state our interventions before we state our passions. It asks us to come at our work from a position of posturing as opposed to a position of heart. As if our interventions didn't first stem from our passions—out of those things that drive us, that connect us to a past we didn't live and a future we may not see but that we know, by our present, that were and will be. I've been thinking about this lately, and the kind of social pr
On April 4 join Dr. Teresa Delgado, Rev. Canon Dr. Altagracia Perez-Bullard, Stephanie Quintana Martínez, and myself as we discuss Puerto Rico, Latinx history and present, and what it means for communities en la lucha to claim our own freedom.
Sponsored by: Union Theological Seminary Event Info: utsnyc.edu/event/puerto-rico-and-beyond/ #PuertoRico #UnionTheologicalSeminary #ProphesyFreedom #Latinx #Theology #History
This year at the American Academy of Religion / Society of Biblical Literature annual conference there will be an all-Puerto Rican panel speaking about the history and present of Puerto Rico. If you're at the conference or in the Boston area, please join us at Puerto Rico and Maria: Histories and Vulnerabilities in the Eye of the Storm.
Below are our panelists, and know that this has come together through a large community of Puerto Rican scholars that mobilized en conjunto
Two years ago at the Hispanic Summer Program I took Dr. Teresa Delgado's course on social movements and I was captivated by her approach to learning. As a professor she centered story, experience, and community as the place from which we do critical academic inquiry. How you felt was just as important and valid as what you thought. And Dr. Delgado always pushed us to see our learning as a privilege that *had* to propel us to action en conjunto. As a first year Master’s studen
A problem arising from the 2016 Presidential Election is that everything began centering on Trump’s overt oppression, obfuscating how power works. The situation in Puerto Rico has made this clear. Folks are now realizing that the situation on the island is exacerbated by policies like PROMESA and the Jones Act that predate Trump by years and administrations. And in 2016, many challenged Clinton and others like her who supported policies like PROMESA, *while also* critiquing t
I don’t love this movement that says we shouldn’t talk about Kaepernick/Take A Knee because of what’s happening in Puerto Rico: our political imagination must be bigger. The argument goes that because Puerto Rico is facing a humanitarian crisis after Hurricane Maria, talking about NFL protests is a distraction. Put differently, many are *rightfully* frustrated that while it looks like a bomb went off in Puerto Rico (as some have described it) NFL protests are receiving a larg
One thing I’m worried about—in addition to my family’s safety—regarding Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico is how colonialism capitalizes on natural disaster. In the early 1900s, United States businesses were able to monopolize Puerto Rican farm land after Hurricane San Ciriaco (1899) devastated the island. Farmers, who were never able to rebuild after the hurricane, were forced to either give up their land or enter unjust agreements with US businesses. Within thirty years, US ow