All along the east coast of North America and Central America, hurricanes have been reeking havoc amongst the populations of these shorelines. The devastation has been evident in Texas, the Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico. All these areas have suffered significant physical damage, which in turn effects economy and morale. Throughout these events, social and political issues between the United States and Puerto Rico have come to the surface. Puerto Rico was hit by Hurricane Maria nearly over a week ago; this United States territory continues to feel the effects of Hurricane Maria as well as the effects of ignorance.
Right now in Puerto Rico, there is significant suffering by those who were affected by the hurricane, which happens to be a majority of the territories’ 3.4 million inhabitants. While there have been movements to help those affected, there is still a long way to go. According to the Huffington Post, over half of the island’s residents are still without drinking water. While FEMA (Federal Emergency Medical Agency) has been actively working in the area, Puerto Rico is far from its former state. Amongst all of this disaster and destruction, communications between President Donald Trump and Governor Ricardo Rosello have been more than inefficient. President Donald Trump tweeted recently about the status of building inspections, inspections that Gov. Rosello was unaware of, but does not completely discredit the possibility of their occurrence. These past few weeks has exposed the general lack of knowledge about Puerto Rico: only half of mainland U.S. citizens knew that residents of Puerto Rico were U.S. Citizens until the hurricane hit.
While unfortunate, Hurricane Maria has provided an opportunity for issues between the U.S. and Puerto Rico to come to the surface. It is evident that there is significant lack of communication and education across the borders. The fact that President Trump and Gov. Rosello’s statements did not align proves the lack of communication on both fronts. Also, there is significantly inadequate education in the mainland American population in order for the existence of the outrageous aforementioned statistic. In recent years, Puerto Rico has worked for more representation in the United States but has not gained any ground in their efforts.
With an improvement in education and communication, the issues that have risen from the waters of Hurricane Maria can be solved. While the territory continues to struggle for equality, this natural disaster has provided the island with the exposure necessary in order to address fatal issues.