Saturday, June 05, 2010

May He Rest in Peace

It’s 3:43am and I’ve been up since 2.  I must have gone to sleep really early because I feel like I have had my full 5 to 6 hours of beauty sleep.  Willie Miranda Marin, the Mayor of Caguas, died yesterday and the news has not stopped covering his death.  (Todo el mundo y sus pulgas tiene algo que decir de él.  Qué pena que no lo dijeron antes de que se muriera.)  I had to turn off the TV.  It felt like a circus!  Really, I wonder how much respect we have for a man whose family must not be going through an easy moment.  It is true, he was the best politician Puerto Rico had seen in a long, long time, but there is a moment at which we must step back and ask ourselves just how much is too much!
In our culture there is no safe medium when it comes to praise or scorn at the moment of a person’s departure.  S/he was either a saint and we loved loving them, or they were the devil itself and we hated their guts.
I am sure it has to be our Spanish bloodline, because what we see (or saw, it has all but completely disappeared) from the rites of passage in the Afro-Caribbean culture of our island, is completely different.  At this point, I would like to invite you to a page that explains the “Baquine”
It is really an enormous loss that we did not elect him instead of Anibal Acevedo Vila, or Luis Fortuño (who is also a Mulato, but whose skin gives him the appearance of a white man, and whose policies make him a die-hard Republican unionist).
History is already judging us for the racism we exhibit toward our own.  This whitening of our black intellectuals, artists, philosophers, educators, poets, etc., has to end somewhere, and as far as I am concerned it ends when the individual is no longer willing to be silent about racism on our island.
My concern is that future generations of our own children will not learn how Willie Miranda Marin worked for the progress of our island.   They will never learn about his economic strategies unless our history teachers have the insight to do the necessary research and include his accomplishment, and his political vision for our island, in their lesson plans.  This must be done now, from the very beginning, as soon as classes begin next term.

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