Puerto Rico

Biden Releases Funding For Puerto Rico

Written by SK Ashby

Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in the fall of 2017 and, as you probably recall, the Trump regime's response to the disaster was negligent at best if not intentionally deadly. Over 3,000 people were killed by a combination of the storm and the Trump regime's failed response to it.

The regime and congressional Republicans continued to insult the people of Puerto Rico in the years that followed, however, by placing strict limits on and micromanaging the recovery funds made available to the island.

The Trump era policy was a racist policy that hasn't been imposed on recovery funds for states and the Biden administration is now taking steps to release about $4.9 billion to Puerto Rican authorities.

Puerto Rico’s reconstruction after Maria, which devastated the island more than three years ago, has been far slower than the recovery in other parts of the country, such as Texas and Florida, that were also struck by major disasters that year. That is partly because the Department of Housing and Urban Development had placed restrictions on Puerto Rico’s aid funds that didn’t apply to other recipients, according to current and former officials and policy experts.

The money is part of $20 billion that Congress provided HUD after Maria for recovery and for protection against future storms in Puerto Rico. According to federal data, only $138 million, or about 0.7 percent, has been spent, a far lower rate than for funding that Congress provided HUD to help Texas, Florida and other parts of the United States to rebuild after similar disasters.

What the Trump regime did to Puerto Rico is not news, of course, but I couldn't help but feel guilty that this atrocity among many others disappeared down the emotional memory hole over the past year.

We all lived through Trump and can recall specific incidents when reminded of them, but the torrent and volume of pure shit that flowed from his White House meant you couldn't consider it all at once. It would be unhealthy if not impossible to do so and sometimes we cope in ways we can't even see until long after. We only have so much emotional bandwidth we can spare before our minds and bodies begin to triage our memory. But for people who live in Puerto Rico, the devastation of Hurricane Trump has been a daily reality for over three years.

This is why it's important to have a diverse administration and government with different backgrounds, priorities, and missions. No one is forgotten when everyone is represented. Taking decisive action to speed Puerto Rico's recovery in the first two weeks of taking office is a good example of this.

Republicans consider diversity a weakness because they are white supremacists who do not assign any human value to minorities. As far as they're concerned, a minute spent helping someone who is different is a minute they should have devoted to themselves. They view life itself as a competition and all of their policies are shaped to prioritize white life.