Welcome to the Fake News. I’m Femmebot 6.0 reporting LIVE from the Capital of Isms where hashtags are designed, crunched and distributed at a rate faster than your sad little human brain can process per second per second. Today our correspondent Super Gringa is reporting LIVE from Santurce, Puerto Ricoooo cuz shit’s going down there in that island in the middle of the ocean like it’s 195-
We interrupt this unnecessary intro with my LIVE feed from Puerto Ricoooo…I’m Super Gringa and it’s Super Hawwwt over here where the height of another season of hurricane shitstorms are already hitting the ceiling fans with the biggest protests in US history successfully ousting the corrupt and homophobic Gov. Ricky Roselló. Personally I think it’s cuz Daddy Yankee used his Super YouTube billion view status to influence the people – finally, although some Fake News reporters say it’s cuz the people who elected this guy exercised their democratic right to take him out, too, for 12 days straight they were in the streets, I wonder why y’all on the mainland can’t do the same to oust another corrupt so-called “leader” I mean liar, maybe it’s because life is too good in places like Indiana, where there are no people of color, and life is something that is bought and sold rather than something you fight and die. Maybe the US is more like Venezuela than anyone wants to admit. Protests mean nothing to a dictator.
We interrupt this remote rant with a TikTok, yet another social media platform gathering data from the people via very very short videos. I’m Femmebot 5.0 editing a mashup of ridiculousness live in the green screen studio of The Multimedia District in Downtown Snorelando: You guys need more paper towels?
Super Gringa: Na, it’s all good, we got enough red tape to wipe our big boricua booties. It’s this replacement governor – Wanda Vasquez – she’s not much better than Roselló. But can I talk about something different than what’s hash tagging right now at this very moment? It’s kinda hyperlinked to all this political unrest and even if it’s not, we all think in mash-ups so it’s Ok for me to talk about this weird group of Republican Puerto Ricans currently attempting to raise $45,000 on GoFundMe to erect a statue of the current occupant of the White House, you know his name, I don’t have to say it here, but for the sake of this Fake News report let’s just call him by the character he played in the Lego movie, “President Business.”
Yes, that character is absurd (and voiced by Will Ferrell), so this news also struck me as absurd (and not as funny as Will Ferrell). If any statue of this guy goes up in Puerto Rico, it should be the baby balloon version of him throwing paper towels at the people to fix the holes in their rooftops left by Hurricane Maria. Puerto Ricans deserve a good laugh after all the shit they’ve gone through in the last two years.
To date, the Republican group of college students has raised $10,435. Their argument is that all the presidents who visited Puerto Rico are represented at a site in San Juan called The Walkway of the Presidents, or Paseo de los Presidentes: Theodore Roosevelt, Herbert Hoover, Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Gerald Ford, and Barack Obama.
Yeah, record scratch – I was about to title this article: “Puerto Rico Doesn’t Need Another GRINGO Statue!” but then I saw Obama had been included on this walkway. Thesis foiled! What do I do now? What can I possibly write from my liberal perspective? The foundation of everything I write is based on the assumption that all white guys are bad and all brown/black guys are exploited and vilified by white guys in order to keep them down. I desperately wanted to argue that ALL the statues of “white” American presidents are unnecessary on an island that has been abused for more than a century by its colonizers, but then the inclusion of an Obama statue totally threw me off because Obama is a black man who wasn’t exploited, who came up from the ranks and whose ancestors never asked for US citizenship anymore than my ancestors who were absorbed by the US and its imperialist agendas.
Perhaps this black and white way of thinking is the reason the integrity of journalism is at stake. All humans have human biases, and we will go to any measure to prove our point, even when the TRUTH does not serve our agenda. So let’s say we are not human, and we are aliens like the “Predator.” Remember him? What if we saw this issue from his perspective? First off, as he flies toward Earth on his spaceship, he doesn’t see borders, only vast expanses of land surrounded by blue. When he lands and sees the humans, he doesn’t see skin color, only moving pods of heat maps. He wouldn’t give a rat’s ass about statues in San Juan. He would only want to kill all the natives of this beautiful planet because that’s what invaders do. It’s what the European explorers did when they arrived in San Juan in the 1400s. Where am I going with this???
Or, let’s say we are HAL from “2001: A Space Odessey.” Even though the humans believe technology is in their control, HAL is actually influencing all the results of human “elections” through a network called the Internet. HAL is entertained all day by the way humans align themselves with marketing slogans like “Send Her Back” or “Yes We Can.”
So, the question isn’t really about erecting a statue of a president who visited the island in order to honor “tradition.” The question should be: why raise money for ANY statue when the island has been in debt for decades? This is exactly the argument the Puerto Rican government has made as it copes with austerity measures to correct its financial woes. And just like there was a GoFundMe campaign to build a wall along the Mexican border when the US government said no to the president, this Republican group is also exercising its rights to use technology to support its opinions/goals around the red tape of democracy.
Meanwhile, Dr. Nutmeg, who created The Femmebots, is watching “The Squad” very closely, as they are garnering their power by very different means than the statues on the Paseo de los Presidentes.
Unlike the presidents, this group of women is a collective. When was the last time US Congress members’ names were as famous as celebrities? Maybe Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul and Thaddeus Stevens come to mind but certainly we didn’t know them like we now know AOC, Omar, Pressley and Tlaib. Thanks for that, President Business. Because of you, we know who these women are, and their platform has become stronger.
As it turns out, this is the story for many of us living in the United States of America, and it’s a story that’s becoming increasingly important as our leaders are drawing a line in the sand between those “who belong here” and those “who don’t.” Meanwhile, how do they know which people belong on which side? When I lived in Colorado in the late 1990s as an AmeriCorps*VISTA volunteer, I often heard the phrase: “My family didn’t cross the border; the border crossed us.” It was a “new” concept for an East Coaster like me, who had long forgotten my elite education in AP American History. If you’ve forgotten, too, the borders of Colorado, Texas, Arizona and New Mexico migrated south as a result of the Mexican American war of 1848, and ownership of these regions switched from Spanish to US. “Ohhhh,” I said dumbly, realizing I had been brainwashed with the popularized notion that all Mexicans who lived in the US had crossed the southern border between the US and Mexico, either legally or illegally. But, perhaps this is how lifelong education works – our brains store facts and figures from books as children, and then as adults those facts and figures connect to our hearts as we experience them in real life. Years later, as I learned more about my own family’s migration from Puerto Rico to New York in the 1940s, I started to realize we were not “immigrants” to the US in the traditional sense, even though that’s what most people call Puerto Ricans on the mainland. We were already citizens as a result of the Jones act in 1917 because similar to Mexicans living in Colorado, Texas, Arizona and New Mexico, the US came to our island, and absorbed us as part of its American empire in the Spanish American war of 1898. We are not “immigrants” who chose to leave our home country for the promise of the American Dream; rather we were promised the American Dream in exchange for a location that would protect US interests in the Panama Canal. For Puerto Ricans, US citizenship was supposed to be a perk of the new arrangement, but as it turned out, it was a perk that only benefited those who migrated to the mainland.