Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Que Puerto Rico!

I'm on the board of the Instructional Telecommunications Foundation. Our group has sister orgs in Portland, the Twin Cities, Chicago and Colorado and we decided to have a meeting of all the groups together. It was hard to convince all the committed and busy folks on these boards to take the time, but having the meeting in Puerto Rico convinced us.We stayed at the Normandie, an art-deco hotel near Old San Juan.Here's the group.At a restaurant called Jibarito in the center of Old San Juan there were two pictures of Don Pedro Albizu Campos on the wall. Years ago I interviewed Conrad Lynn, a civil rights lawyer who defended Albizu Campos when he was tried for conspiracy by the US for advocating Puerto Rican independence. Albizu Campos spent years in prison and his health deteriorated. Many believe he was subjected to radiation experiments, which is consistant with his symptoms and also the sorts of experiments that were going on in the 1950's using prisoners. You can read about the continuing struggle for Puerto Rican autonomy at the Claridad web page. You can also check out the Democracy Now! archive for the segment on Puerto Rico on March 22, 2007. didn't really explore any other parts of Puerto Rico-- just Old San Juan, which is full of contradictions. The streets are paved with blue-glazed bricks and are incredibly beautiful. There was a great museum call Museum of the Americas with an interesting exhibit about native peoples.But the exhibit is sponsored by ATT.Most of the exhibitions are sponsored by corporations.Pancha and I went to a service at the cathedral.There were pigeons flying around inside the cathedral and a dove design on the stained glass window.During the service a homeboy came in and crossed himself at the font and then continued with a bunch of hand signs (gang signals). After the service he stayed on the bench praying intensely.Even the cathedral has a corporate sponsor.The youngest member of our group is Pascal, who at 14 months can navigate a cell phone.


Post a Comment

<< Home