Anti-Government Protests Rock Puerto Rico,
Saying “Enough Already!”



Photo: twitter/@rob_art

Photo: Central Meteorológica y Geológica del Caribe

Massive protests demanding the ouster of Puerto Rico’s governor Ricardo Rosselló and his regime are shaking this whole oppressed island nation of some three million people and reverberating across communities of millions of other Puerto Ricans in mainland U.S. On Monday, July 15, tens of thousands marched in the streets of San Juan, the capital city. As protesters neared the governor's residence, which was protected with barricades, the police attacked with tear gas and pepper spray. As we post this on Wednesday night, more large protests are expected.

The immediate spark for the outbreak of protest is the exposure of widespread corruption in the government—including Rosselló’s former education secretary, who allegedly steered millions of dollars in contracts to “politically connected” contractors. This at a time when many schools in Puerto Rico have been shut down, part of the unnecessary and deliberate devastation in the wake of Hurricane Maria—as a result of genocidal inaction by the U.S. government and its refusal to organize a serious recovery effort—that has caused great death and suffering and severe degradation of the entire economic, educational, and social infrastructure of Puerto Rico (see “American Crime Case #14: Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico… And America’s Genocidal Response ”). On top of the corruption, hundreds of pages of online chats between Rosselló and members of his administration were leaked, showing these men exchanging misogynist (woman-hating), anti-LGBTQ, anti-handicapped, and other reactionary comments, including about victims of Hurricane Maria. So far, Rosselló has refused to resign.

Beyond these immediate outrages is the anger among the Puerto Rican people over the oppression they face, which has become even more intolerable since Hurricane Maria. A 31-year-old woman told the NY Times as she prepared to march on Wednesday, “It’s the final straw. My kids’ classrooms have mold in them.... There’s just so much outrage that’s been building over time.” Among the widely known Puerto Rican artists who have joined the protests or voiced support are Ricky Martin, Bad Bunny, and Residente. Martin said in an online video message, “Puerto Rico has suffered so much and we can’t deal with the cynicism of these leaders anymore. Enough already. Enough already.”


Get a free email subscription to

Volunteers Needed... for and Revolution

Send us your comments.