Oprah Donates $2M Aid To Puerto Rico: "The needs of our fellow Americans are still very real"
"The needs of Puerto Rico and our fellow American citizens following the tragic hurricanes are still very real...and the work is long from over."
Hurricane Maria was the deadliest natural disaster to hit the United States within a century, resulting in the loss of 3,000 lives and devastating the island of Puerto Rico. For almost a year, Puerto Ricans lived without any electricity, and now, a year a half later, 30,000 homes are still without roofing, people are struggling to put food on the table, and suicide and crime rates are rising.
All the while, our president works to reduce the insufficient aid that our government has been slow to provide. So others have taken it upon themselves to do what they can to help Puerto Rico
Oprah has pledged to donate $2 million to the ongoing disaster relief efforts. In a statement, she explained that she was inspired by Hamilton-creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, who founded Flamboyan Arts Fund, an organization which is working to revitalize Puerto Rico.
"I was so moved by Lin-Manuel Miranda’s commitment to bring 'Hamilton' to Puerto Rico and support the community that served him growing up that I wanted to join in the revitalization efforts of an island so rich in culture, beauty, and heritage.
The needs of Puerto Rico and our fellow American citizens following the tragic hurricanes are still very real, and the work that has already been done by the Hispanic Federation, Flamboyan Arts Fund and other organizations on and off the island is long from over."
The money will be divided between the Flamboyan Arts Fund and the Hispanic Federation's UNIDOS Disaster Relief & Recovery Program.
Puerto Rico's road to recovery is a long and difficult one, made more so by structural problems within the island's government, but especially so by our own federal government's neglect.
Recovery efforts and aid were significantly "lower and slower" for Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria than for Texas after Hurrican Harvey and Florida after Hurricane Irma, despite the fact that Hurrican Maria was more damaging.
Mr. President, this "place" you refer to, #PuertoRico, is home to over three million proud Americans that are still recovering from the storm and in need of federal assistance. We are not your adversaries, we are your citizens.— Ricardo Rossello (@ricardorossello) April 2, 2019
The president claimed that relief supplies and aid workers were slow to reach Puerto Rico (2 months slower than for Texas and Florida) because it is "surrounded by water. Big water. Ocean water."
He also continues to claim that Puerto Rico's "incompetent or corrupt" politicians have misused "$91 billion" worth of federal aid, when actually the government has only provided around $11B.
Pres Trump continues to embarrass himself & the Office he holds. He is unhinged & thus lies about the $ received by PR. HE KNOWS HIS RESPONSE was innefficient at best. He can huff & puff all he wants but he cannot escape the death of 3,000 on his watch. SHAME ON YOU! 1/2 https://t.co/snGmda1CNN— Carmen Yulín Cruz (@CarmenYulinCruz) April 2, 2019
Puerto Rico may not (yet) be a state, but its citizens are American citizens, and our federal government has a responsibility to ensure their welfare.