Sunday, June 1, 2008

If a vote is counted in Puerto Rico, does anybody notice?

Now, Puerto Rico's a great place to be and I have fond memories of dashing through its airport trying to catch a connecting flight on my honeymoon, but let's consider the result of Saturday's primary vote. Clinton beat Obama 68-32.

Here's the thing - no one really cares. PR does not vote in the general election, it has no electoral votes, and this victory is purely symbolic for Clinton. Obama didn't even bother to campaign there, to my knowledge. Additionally, there are many factors at play in any campaign. Since Clinton's been asserting that sexism has been a major factor in her inability to clinch the nomination (as opposed to crap like this), let's look at this post from by poster lapfog_1 regarding the general culture of PR:

Dirty little secret of the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico
They are extremely racist. Yes, racist. And it's not about skin color. It's about skin color and place of origin.

Continentals... that is what they call stateside black people.

I lived in the US VI for about a year, but it was an incident in Puerto Rico that sticks in my mind... I and my girlfriend were drinking in a bar, having a quiet time... a African American comes up and sits down next to us... he tries very hard to get the attention of the bar tender (also someone who I would say is "black" though obviously Hispanic/black)...

While he is trying to place an order, we strike up a conversation, turns out he is a film producer from LA, here in Puerto Rico to do a commercial photo shoot... times goes on and he still can't get the attention of the bartender. So I now ask him what he wants, he tells me his drink order, I signal the bartender and order it. When the bartender brings me the drink and I hand it to our new friend... the bartender turns to me and says "you cannot do that... you must leave".

I have never been so shocked in my life.

But the film producer from LA gets up and tells me "no, this has been my whole experience here... everywhere I go... I will never return to Puerto Rico". My girlfriend and I also leave but not before letting all of the other tourists know what just happened and making a formal complaint to the management.

But everywhere we went in the US possessions in the Caribbean, we found the same thing. we were treated as walking wallets (ok it's a tourist trap), and US Continentals were treated as less than dirt.

One post on a forum does not a case make (although Google turns up more), but combined with the lack of electoral votes I think the only conclusion regarding Saturday's big win for Clinton in Puerto Rico is: who cares?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thats the most ridiculous thing i ever heard.. LOL

maybe he was lying to you. He probably was kicked out of that bar for a specific reason. Puerto Ricans are not racist in the least