“Puerto Ricans Are Loud”

On a recent trip to Puerto Rico with my friend Monica, I was curious to know why Puerto Ricans are stereotyped as being “loud”,

The island of PR is small.  My friend told me that sometimes it doesn’t even show on maps.  A simple Google search of various maps made me aware that this is indeed true.  Depending on the map publisher, the island of PR may not exist at all.  It makes me wonder, since the Lesser Antilles are much smaller islands than PR, why is it that the archipelago appears on the map?  Perhaps because it’s a grouping of islands? Most likely… Other times, PR does appear, but it’s so small, there is no room to add its name. It’s just a drawing of an unnamed piece of land.  So, it’s just another little piece of land in the Caribbean Sea.

I was told about the “coqui” – a tiny little frog that sings at night. It’s so tiny, you can’t see it.  And what a beautiful song it sings! Their singing is loud, especially in areas with lots of vegetation. And even though you may think that one is close to you and you go looking for it, you will not see it.

One day, I heard a sound coming from a tree nearby.  I asked what it was and my friend was prompt to tell me that it was a múcaro.  “What is a múcaro?”, I asked.  “It’s an owl, only very small and you won’t be able to see it”, said my friend.  It measures about 9 inches!

I had also heard about the Puerto Rican parrot, considered to be a “critically endangered species”.  I asked my friend about this native bird – what it looked like; how big was it; how many there were – and I learned that the efforts in trying to breed them have been somewhat successful and that they mostly live in the rain forest, where they are protected.  They are green and they are very small, so unless you see them flying in a flock, you won’t be able to see them at all.

We then visited the Camuy Caves – the third largest underground river system in the world – and a tour inside these magnificent caves revealed that in the water ponds inside the cave, there lives an almost microscopic “shrimp”, almost transparent in color and blind.  Which means, you can’t see it.

It was fun to watch the green iguanas roaming everywhere, but my friend quickly clarified that green iguanas are not native to PR.  They were introduced and have become an invasive nuisance. Puerto Rico does have some endemic iguanas – the large ones measuring up to 6 ft are found in other islands that are part of the Puerto Rican archipelago.  The one found in the main island in everyone’s yard is a much smaller version of the iguana as we know it.

So, it would be safe to say that everything in Puerto Rico is small, sometimes so small, you can’t see things.

As I learn more about the political relationship Puerto Rico has with the United States, things start to make sense.

Puerto Rico is a colony of the US and has been for over 100 years.  Prior to that, PR was a colony of Spain for about 400 years.  So, aside from when it used to be Boriken (a free Taino Indian-inhabited pre-Colombian island), Puerto Rico has been the “little guy” owned by the “big guys”.  And its people are confused about which direction to go: independent country, a state of the nation or a “free but independent state” or commonwealth of the US.

Puerto Ricans are American citizens.  They travel and move to and from other states as any other American citizen would.  Yet, they are “invisible”, or should I call them the Invisible Americans?  They are considered immigrants when they clearly are not.  Or when discussing issues related to Latinos or Hispanics, most of the discourse and rhetoric used by the media relates to Mexicans or at a lesser extent, Cubans.  So, within the Hispanic population, they are bulked into one main category – if you’re Hispanic then you must be Mexican; and when acknowledged as Puerto Rican, then they are considered immigrants.  Even worse, sometimes they are completely mistaken by whole different nationality altogether – Costa Ricans.  No. Wait! There is something worse: Internet purchases.

When purchasing over the Internet on a “international” site, when you scroll down to find your country, PR is not in the list.  When you use US as your country (because it is a US territory), and you go about to enter your address and state, oops, there is no PR state (because it is not a state).  So Puerto Ricans are invisible even in the World Wide Web!

From my friend, and my trip to PR, I have learned some amazing things about PR and its people.  Here is a short list of well-known “facts” commonly heard from Puerto Ricans:

– Puerto Rican coffee is the best in the world. It’s so good, this is the coffee that the Pope drinks. Some say it’s the oficial coffee of the Vatican.

– The Camuy Caves System is the 3rd largest underground river system in the world.

– The Arecibo Observatory? The largest radiotelescope in the world!

– El Yunque? The ONLY rain forest in the US National Forest System

– The Bioluminiscent Bay is something else! There are 5 in the world and PR has 3 of them!

– Some of the beaches have been rated the best in the world

– The San Juan Cathedral and San Jose Church are the two oldest churches in the Western Hemisphere

– La Fortaleza is the oldest (continuously working) executive mansion in the New World.

– El Morro and San Marcos Fortresses are the oldest in the US

– Old San Juan is a UNESCO site as well as various other places in PR

– Walmart Puerto Rico broke selling records of all Walmart stores

– ‘Plaza Las Americas’ mall in San Juan is the most profitable mall per square foot in the world and the largest mall in the entire Caribbean Basin.

– Puerto Rico is the country with the most cars per square mile in the world: 146 vehicles per street mile and 4,300 vehicles per square mile.

– The highest grossing Borders book store in US was located in Plaza Las Americas Mall.  Too bad they closed. It was my favorite store too!

– The busiest Toys “R” Us in the world is also in Plaza Las Americas

– The highest grossing Sears store in the World is in Puerto Rico.

– The highest selling Kmart in the US is in Puerto Rico.

– The Radio Shack store in Plaza Las Americas mall is the busiest and highest grossing Radio Shack in the world.

– The largest JC Penney store in the world (a full 4 stories) is located at Plaza Las Americas mall

– Piña Colada was “born” in PR in 1954.

– Puerto Rico has won the Miss Universe pageant a record five times.

– The place in the world with more pharmaceutical companies per square mile is Puerto Rico.

– There are about 1,100 people per square mile, a ratio higher than within any of the 50 states in the United States.

– Puerto Rico is the third country in the world with more physicians in proportion to its population.

– The longest pool in the world is located in a hotel in Dorado, PR. (The hotel is currently closed).

– It is estimated that there is more Nickel in the mountains of Puerto Rico than the whole United States, including Alaska and Hawaii.

– The state of Florida was discovered by Puerto Rico’s first governor, Don Juan Ponce de Leon.

– The first shot fired by the United States in World War I was in Puerto Rico by Lt. Teofilo Marxuach.

– 86% of the rum consumed in the world is from Puerto Rico – Bacardi

– Puerto Rico has one of the world’s highest productivity ratios.

– Puerto Rico ranks 6th in the world when it comes to college graduates

– Puerto Rico has more gas stations, churches, cars, roads, and Walgreens per square mile than any other country in the world.

– The second radio station to be inaugurated in the US was in PR. Sally Jesse Raphael’s first gig in the media was in PR.

– The first Emmy went to Puerto Rican Jose Ferrer, who also got the Academy award for the same role.

– Rita Moreno (from PR) received both of those and one for Best Actress in a Broadway show. No one else has matched that.

– The most outstanding soldier in Europe at the end of the Second WW was chosen from the Puerto Rican 65th Infantry. (See BorinqueneersCongressional Gold Medal Alliance at http://www.65thcgm.org)

So, I’ve been thinking:

Like in Alice in Wonderland, when you visit PR, everything will seem small to you, because they are small.  So, when you hear a Puerto Rican talking loud, remember that they are like their coqui frog – sometimes invisible, but loud enough to always be heard.

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291 comments on ““Puerto Ricans Are Loud”

  1. Great blog. Please include Jorge Otero-Barreto from Vega Baja, P.R.. The Puerto Rican “RAMBO”. The most decorated soldier of the Vietnam War. He is the main subject of the documentary film I am currently producing, “BRAVE LORDS” a perspective of the war in Vietnam, as experienced by Puerto Rican soldiers.

  2. Very clever the way you use a stereotype to show our greatness. It’s good to let people know that we are a nation with an identity, although, they want to look us invisible, our voice rumbles in the world. Thanks for your sensitivity!

  3. Thanks for your interest in our island! However, I must say the tittle is a little stereotypical. I understand what you were trying to do with it but with such great content it’s a bit of a shame to highlight something that might come across as a negative. Remember, not everyone is going to get past the tittle and read the full article… I’m glad that you enjoyed our island and it’s treasures. We have a few more, keep searching and come back! :)

    P.S. The bioluminescence bay in Fajardo has temporarily lost it’s brightness, but the problem is being taken care of.

    • Though the tittle is stereotypical, is a common saying of other cultures when they refer to us. So he is very intelligent in calling those racist ones to read, maybe thinking they’ll find more to put us down, and then when reading they find facts of how amazing we are. I thank him for being so smart. And like everyone, if you go once to PR, you’ll need to repeat. Our island is addictive. :-) Born and raised in SJ.

    • Though the title may sound stereotypical or negative, it is the truth that Puertorricans are loud and noisy. That is what caught my attention, but when I read the article I was surprised to find it was more interesting than I expected. It’s not really criticizing our people for being loud, but exposes the truth about Puerto Rico, it’s culture, Fauna, achievements and greatness. Didn’t find it negative at all.

      P.S. We also have what is considered the deepest Ocean Bay of the world, next to El Morro.

  4. Hi! Very good article. There are many positive aspects and facts on my island. I wish that many Puerto Ricans themselves could see it, because right now we are facing many social problems that are not necessary. Great article.

  5. Puerto Ricans being full American citizens, then Puerto Rico is not a colony. It is a U.S. Commonwealth, one step shy of being a state. …only a most important clarification…

    • Although I don’t see the point in your comment about our status, I would like you to take a look at any map and see that under Puerto Rico, it says “U.S. territory. The article shares the many things that stand out about us. Refusing to accept our territorial condition won’t make it go away.

    • Actually if you are born on the Island then you are not allowed to vote for President of the USA. Also if you live outside of the USA you are not allowed to vote for President as an absentee ballot, with the exception of being an ACTIVE duty service member. A Mexican who becomes a citizen is allowed to vote outside the USA as an absentee voter but not a Puerto Rican born as a US citizen in Puerto Rico. So that means we are not full citizens.

      • I was born in the island and have been registered to vote the last two elections. Although, the last one I chose not to vote at all. You cannot vote, however, if you reside in the island and never live and register at a state. If you were born in the island and reside in any state, you can vote. If you have registered in a state and go away, you can vote as an absentee.

      • @Dbonilla I live in Kuwait and not as an active duty service member but as a Chef/Restauranteur. I own the only Puerto Rican restaurant in the MidEast. When I tried to vote at the embassy last elections I was denied because I was born in Puerto Rico. When I told them that I was a resident of Kentucky they said that because I have been living here over six months I lost the privilege to vote. I have been here for over five years just so you know. Yet my brother who was born in New York and my sister who was born in Germany can vote as absentee voters. All I am saying is that we are not complete citizens.

      • Really?…I have voted in every presidential election since I was 18, the first president I voted for was Bill Clinton. I was born in El Hospital Central de Centro Medico in what is now known as San Juan Puerto Rico, but used to be Rio Piedras Puerto Rico. I would really love to know where did you get that information…because I bet you I am not the only Puertorrican that has voted in a presidential election!
        I totally loved the article, only thing I have to say is that we were a French colony for 4 years from 1800 to 1804.

      • I was born in Aibonito and I have voted in a presidential election. If you registered at the DMV while living in Kentucky you can vote as an absentee. If you didn’t register, you cannot vote. If they told you otherwise, they lied to you. And yes, we are complete citizens (legally). All laws, rights, privileges, and responsibilities apply to us exactly the same they do to every other American in this country. The voting thing is not a limitation if you really understand how it works. Socially… well, that’s a different story.

      • @caribbeanhutkuwait If you’re a registered voter in Kentucky it doesn’t matter where you were born. Only that you resided there and registered. This doesn’t only apply to Americans born in Puerto Rico or Puerto Ricans.. See this link http://www.aaro.org/aaro-around-the-world/254
        Maybe they just didn’t want to let you vote cause you caused a scene. Hehe ;)

      • @DBonilla I did register at the Kentucky RMV. Actually in Kentucky they automatically register you at the RMV for voting. I also spoke to some lawyers specializing in constitutional law. They also confirmed that Puerto Ricans born in Puerto Rico are not “legally” full citizens of the USA. Then again, they also explained that American citizenship are broken up into three categories. Those of us from Puerto Rico and the American Somoas fall under the third category. That is US citizens born in US Territories.

      • @caribbeanhutkuwait If you are registered at the DMV with a Kentucky address (or RMV), you should be able to vote as an absentee. As far as your attorney friends you can tell them to go back to school! How can they say that we are not “legally” full citizens? It’s the only citizenship that we get as there’s not such thing as a “Puerto Rican citizenship”. They might mean that living in the island gives us the restriction of voting for president (just as any other american born outside of the states). But legally citizens, that much we are! My passport looks exactly the same as any other American’s. I pay the same taxes, qualify exactly for the same type of benefits… etc. Honestly, I’m not responding anymore to someone who writes things because other people told him so. Do your own research and studying. Read! Learn about your own culture, history, and laws. Thanks!!

      • @DBonilla I apologize if the truth upsets you. I did do the research ob my own and came up the same. I am not like other stateside Puerto Ricans who do not know any thing about who they are and where they come from. Neither am I one of those self blinded Puerto Ricans who insist on believing that they are something they are not. If you want to the research yourself then I suggest the Laws and Constitutional section at the Library of Congress. By the way, there you will find how citizenship is defined according to the Constitution of the USA.

      • I beg to differ with you my friend, I’m Puerto Rican and born in Aguadilla PR, I have voted in every presidential election since 1965. Though I’m Puerto Rican I grew up in New York, I’ve also voted absentee ballot from overseas. Ed Rosario

      • @Edwin Rosario When you were overseas and voted absentee was it at the embassy? And if it was were you active duty. If you were active Duty or DOD then you still have the Privilege to vote for President. If you weren’t Active duty or DOD, were you a resident of the country that you voted in for more than 6 months? I am more than sure that either of the two definitely are the case. I shall say this again, this is the Truth. Anyone born in a US Territory does not have the right to vote for President of the USA. Instead he or she is given the privilege of voting in Presidential election if he or she is a Tax Paying Resident of one of the 50 states. This is due to the fact that he has to pay Federal Taxes. Now, I am pretty sure that some people think I am political. That I am NOT. I only believe that the Truth should always be told that is all. There is no country in the world that does not have categories for their citizenship. The difference is that some do not like to advertise this. If you feel you are American than you can be and if you feel you are Puerto Rican than you can be. But when we talk in legal and realistic language than that is where things differ is all.

        That all said the blog written by monique should be applauded instead of attacked. We should be so lucky that non Puerto Ricans have anything good to say about us. She could have said that all Puerto Ricans are drug dealers, car thieves, murderers, and lazy bums who refuse to get a job and lose their Welfare checks. No, instead she took a harmless stereo type and pointed out the beauty of Puerto Rico and its people. We should thank her instead of attack her. Once again monique this Boricua thanks you.

      • @alexa figueroa Are you registered to vote in the US? Ie. one of the 50 states. If you are then you are missing the whole point of what I am saying. No one is saying that Puerto Ricans cant vote in Presidential election. What I stated is the fact that if you are a Puerto Rican born in Puerto Rico and live outside of the USA for more than six months you lose the privilege to vote for the president as an absentee voter. That is what happened to me when I went to the US embassy here in Kuwait. I was even threatened with expulsion from the embassy because I caused a scene being a loud Puerto Rican that I am. ;)

      • Paula, you may consider yourself a second class citizens, many of us don’t. I’m a highly decorated retired Soldier with several degrees from American different universities and a 6 figure income. I own a home in Europe worth almost half a million dollars and drive a BMW, my wife drives an Audi…I’m also an accomplished athlete. I, a jibarito from Mayaguez, have worked too hard and accomplished too much to consider myself inferior to anyone, needless to say… many other Boricuas have accomplished much more than me…. Some Americans may not like or understand us, many know absolutely nothing about our race/culture, nevertheless, we need to stop doubting ourselves, we can compete w/ anyone and come out on top. Let’s stop acting like “cangrejos” in a bucket and quit pulling each other and ourselves down…

      • I don’t think success is what is being measured. Second class citizenship doesn’t apply to Puerto Ricans living in the mainland US (although I say this keeping in mind other issues). Second class citizenship comes from the fact that as a US citizen, Puerto Ricans living in the island, or living elsewhere but who have never lived in the mainland cannot vote for their president.

      • Paula, the ungrateful attitude that you demonstrate is what has kept Puerto Rico from reaching statehood. The US has always subsidized and pumped moneis to PR since the beginning of the relationship. However, you cannot complain about what you create. For instance, if you sacrificed your entire life for your children, providing them with all their needs, protected them & nurtured them…..then one day they pay you back by talking bad about you all the time, ditch you, and reject you when you want them to introduce you as their mom……what would you think and do? That is basically what the majority of our people, such as yourself, have done to the US every time that Statehood comes up! PR overwhelmingly voted for statehood during the last what do we want to be when we grow up elections. Now its time for Congress to accept and ratify statehood for PR. Statehood is a hairline away, but with all the problems that the US has now, as well as the perceived rejection, I am not surprised that we are not a priority at this moment in time. Another issue that I would like to point out to you, is that WE, Puerto Ricans are NOT treated any more or any less as a second class citizen than any other American living here in the mainland or anywhere else in the world. We need the US more than they need us!

    • Puerto Ricans are US citizens since 1917 and have a governor, congress, and supreme court just like any american state. Though its official name, Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico (Commonwealth of Puerto Rico), it is not a commonwealth like countries which are under the United Kingdom. I consider PR a colony because is under the US federal law, US congress and the President. We only have one congressman in Washington with voice but no voting power.

    • Sorry Aida, as a born and raqised puertorican from the island, he is right. The Commonwealth is just a fancy word to not call us a colony, since being a colony would be racist and has connotations of the abuse done to slaves in the Spaniard years. Truth is, we are the only colony up to this day. There’s no other place that lives our situation. What do you think of someone living in your home, consuming your goods and making you spend your $ on food for them and for that person not to at least give you a penny to help the house economy? What if this happens for 100 years? for 500 years? The US aquired us from Spain because of our strategic location. Ever since the spaniards, the deal with our island is big companies go there and pay low rates to employees plus do not pay taxes to the island but bring those taxes to the big country. This can be done because is part of the colonial situation. They would not be able to do that here in the big US. Not even when their labor is in China. That’s only one of the many facts that shows we are a colony. Howw can we be part of the US and not be able to vote for the President, who decides on our futures? There’s many other I can poin to but will not continue. Just showing you he is totally right. We have a guest in our home since 500 years ago, a guest sold their place in it and the new guest kept living out of us and do not changes our situation because is very profitable to them. That guest takes advantage of our resources and even sickened our kids, look up Vieques online and what’s happening there so you can see what I mean. This guest takes advantage of all in us but do not gives us not even half of what they take. A few pennies to the employees, while taking millions out of us.

  6. maybe its your style of writing that i didn’t care for or the fact that all you wrote was word of mouth and the little you did experience was in the metro area, your view of the island and Puerto Ricans seemed squid, racist and condescending. Puerto Rico’s political situation is unfortunate but making progress, but invisible we are not.. anyone can write an article via google and a hand full of US raised puerto ricans that not always interpret their culture correctly and also suffer an identity crisis.. the article was ok at best, seeing you’re handy caped in the reseach department… Puerto Rico is of Proud Valiant and Humble people, congrats on the article but a D- kiddo

    What culture do you know to not be loud? there are plenty of stereotypes to go around and much more harsh then LOUD…

    • What hand full of stateside born Puerto Ricans suffering from an identity crisis are you referring to Mr. Media Group? The largest parade in the world is presented annually as the National Puerto Rican Day Parade in NYC by stateside born Puerto Ricans. Attracting millions, that one parade certainly shows the largest display of Puerto Rican identity in the universe. Can a handful of island born media types top that? I think that your statement is pretentious at best and awfully presumptuous at the least. What media group outlet do you represent- the misinformation mill generated by your buddies of the fourth estate? Stop your retarded bias against state side born Puertorriquenos you media nincompoop.

  7. Very good writing. Some things are exaggerated, others with almost certain, but lacked things to know the friend, as a raucous Christmas in Puerto Rico. That may like as can frighten. I am Puerto Rican and I hate it because it’s not traditional. Nor tolerate the coqui, is noisy. With regard to the Internet, there are many American companies where we are listed among EU territories, which is what we really are.

  8. Cuba was the favorite Colonial Island of Spain, all cargo and mail bound to Puerto Rico had to go through Cuba. The Dutch, English and other Caribbean Pirates attacked the ships or frigates on the way to Puerto Rico. The idea of Cost Guard originated here in Puerto Rico, our Pirates “Roberto Cofresi y Ramirez de Arellano was Puerto Rico’s most famous pirate and was regarded by many as the Puerto Rican equivalent of Robin Hood.and Miguel Henriquez” specially were given permition (or the blind eye) to become Buccaneers and safe guard supply ships to the Island, but to take any other Pirates Bounty as their own, we gained more ships and our coasts were guarded against European and other Caribbean pirates. Part of the the beleived treasure of Cofresi is still beleived burried in a cave…..

  9. I’m amazed of how many so called Boricuas on these comments can call this historic facts. People, lean un chavao libro de historia de P.R! (SMH) Learn you history from reliable sources. This is mostly personal views. And, even though Puerto Rican coffe is the best, the exports of coffee are limited and not so popular as back in the days when coffee was one of the main exports of P.R. The Pope drinks P-Rican coffee? Please!!!! That’s blasphemous, not for the Pope, but for Puerto Rican coffee. But, for old times sake: ♫ “Yaucono cafe Yaucono, acaba’ito de colar…por el gustito yo lo se, Yaucono es el mejor cafe.”♫

    • I don’t think anyone has called what I wrote “historic facts”, not even myself. If you re-read the blog, I exactly wrote: [well-known “facts” (see the quotes here?) commonly heard from Puerto Ricans]. So what if the Pope drinks or doesn’t drink Puerto Rican coffee? It’s the pride that matters and PR coffee is pretty darn good! Just be proud of what you have. You don’t hear Texans debating whether what they have there is the biggest in the world or not. Texans are just proud “everything is big” for them.

  10. “So, it would be safe to say that everything in Puerto Rico is small, sometimes so small, you can’t see things.” -moniquealexandralourbridge

    Yeah sure, that’s why you see a Puerto Rican flag everywhere. Because were are so small that nobody can see us! Uuumm what planet do you live in again?

  11. Monique:

    Whether all true or not (I do know most of these statements to be true for I have done the research myself, others I wouldn’t really know), I command you for writing a piece where you are trying to see the best in us. I apologize for I see your intent, and yet we “loud” Puertorricans, we bite our own asses when we can not see when, one of those who typically kick us and diminish us, is trying to see the best in us and make their own opinions instead of following prejudices.

    You see, one thing you might not have noticed, is that in Puerto Rico EVERYTHING turns around politics and political parties. Our behavior is even justified by the party you belong to, which 90% of the time is shameful. We are also very loud, because we are sick and tired of those who will find a way to make it about the status. For them Status is ALL and the ONLY thing. There is a group of people who think like me, but we are the minority, we can care less because we know is a losing battle and although we have our opinions about it, our lives do not revolve around it.

    I want to thank you for having the best intent, for taking the time to see us through a different pair of eyes. thank you for being so polite. I thought your article was very refreshing and enlightening. It made me feel proud. Thank you for seeing the best in us in a time when even we can’t.

    You are welcome to come again and write something else. You should interview “El Boricuazo” (Facebook him) he can help you with solid facts that NO ONE will refute and he is a joy to chat with.

      • I believe you can send a grievance notification to the dept of consumer affairs in PR (DACO??). On their website, there is a link to place your complaint against this very issue. I sent them an email through that link but never got a response. There is power in unity. Perhaps getting a group of people together to place your grievance in person? How about a Facebook page like they did for a TV show that PRicans wanted off the air? There is also a website where you can create your own petition or call-to-action and get people to sign the petition. Online petitions have a lot of power.

  12. Pingback: “Puerto Ricans Are Loud” | Sonia's crafty space

  13. I was born in Lares. I grew up in Indiana. I have gone to Puerto Rico once in 2008. I thought it was beautiful and it filled me with pride. I am sorry to say that I don’t know much about Puerto Rico because the schools here on the mainland do not consider Puerto Rico important enough to even mention. I loved this article. I always heard the saying “Americans are loud” but not specifically about Puerto Rican Americans.Someone here wrote that there are Puerto Rican flags everywhere but I haven’t seen them. I live in Arizona and I don’t think there are many Puerto Ricans here. There are, however, Mexicans pretending to be Puerto Ricans with stolen identities so they can pass as citizens. I have to admit that I miss Puerto Rican food living here.

    • When I was stationed in Arizona, my Puerto Rican friends and I used to rent rooms on the weekend in the Marriott because they had kitchens. Then we would go grocery shopping and each room would cook a different Puerto Rican menu. At the end we would take all the food to one room and have a small party/get together and enjoy the food and cooking we missed most.

      • This reminds me of a line on the TV Show Quantum Leap where liz Torres played an Angel. She was told that she was loud and she said, “Loud, loud, I’m not loud, I’m Puerto Rican!” I love Liz Torres!

  14. I for one, enjoyed the article. It was written from a personal experience and second-hand information and that’s okay. Yes, we can be loud, we are a people that is not afraid to rejoice, we are a people whose makeup is passion and it’s hard to contain all of that! Que Viva Puerto Rico! But loud besides Cubans are Dominicans. OMG! It would be interesting for some to get some opinions on the number of Dominicans living in Puerto Rico, having a street named Dominican Republic(?) and how they demand so much of the Puerto Rican government when they have booted Haitains, born in D.R., out of their country. I think it’s time Puerto Rico start filtering them out – the things they say about Puerto Ricans when they come to New York, truly sad, – forgetting the help they received from islanders as well as living better than ever. Say it loud, I’m Puertorriquena and PROUD!!!!

  15. I loved the article and truly believe it should be published in a Sunday magazine for the world to see. Thank you for having such insight and wiring about PR. I am a Puerto Rican born in NY and raised in a few places including PR. I went to high school and college in PR. I loved the time I spent there and visit often. Thank for saying things about the island I have been saying for years.. God Bless PR and the US as we are one and the same. Chris Diaz

  16. For the first time I have seen a message that should make suppliers of products advertised all over the world aware that when we, in Puerto Rico try to order, the suppliers will not ship to Puerto Rico…..?????even if we are US citizens or whatever that means.
    We have served protecting the US in their wars through centuries and we are worth “000000000000000000000000”

  17. To my understanding if a Puerto Rican lives and resides in the island of Puerto Rico they are not allow to vote for US presidency. However, if a Puerto Rican moves to the US and register to vote in their perspective state, they can and have the right to vote for president no matter if they were born in the island or not. If, on the other hand, a Rican lives in a foreign country, it was up to the Rican to request a absentee ballot from the states in which he/she was registered in the United States. If, by any chance you failed to vote on one election, you might have to re-register again in the US.

  18. San Juan – or El Viejo San Juan – is not a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Only that part of San Juan administered by the National Park Service is a World Heritage Site, which consists of a good deal of the walls which the Spanish built to enclose the city. The town of San Juan is a National Historic Landmark – look it up on the internet – through the efforts of Dr. Arleen Pabon Chaneco. And, the oldest religious building in the western hemisphere is in Santo Domingo, D.R. The old San Juan Cathedral is the second oldest – still a considerable achievement.

  19. Some of the facts are not that accurate as noted, though most are true. One fact missing is that, since 1917, people born in Puerto Rico are borne US Citizens. US citenship was granted in 1917 so that Puerto Rican could be drafted to fight in WWI. Same as with black americans, Puerto Rican Armed Forces members, which have served in every US conflict since 1917, were group for decades in segregated units.

  20. Me being born in the us and travel to and from the island know exactly what you are saying my dad was a borinqenier from the same unit of the 65 infantry a veteran who is back in puerto rico to finish his days in his beloved island of inchantment I salut you for the mention being a veteran myself and consider myself to be full blooded American rasied and bread in the Chicago area and familiar to the irish and italian negitive comments of the Puerto rican origans forgetting that they were immigrants themselves in the 1900’s so they pick on the mexicans that are in the same boat they were in this country is made up of so many different people we the people of all races need to pull together and raise our pride as one nation like before, God every one of us in this quest!!!!!!!!!!!Andrew Robles

  21. Very nice blog. I’m going to share it with a co-worker who will be visiting PR soon. Just one correction, the oldest church in the Western Hemisphere is actually la Catedral Primada in the Dominican Republic. Our Iglesia de San Jose is the second one. Thanks!

  22. great blog, loved it!!!

    My 2 cents…

    We are “limited” citizens. The most basic part, we cannot vote for the “big cheese”
    Colony, Commonwealth, Territory, called whatever, any other American citizen votes no mater where they live. But hey, both Republicans and Democrats raise money here on election year. We pay Federal taxes (yes, we do not pay federal income tax, but we do pay all the other federal taxes), get half the benefits. PR public schools rate in the bottom of the hemisphere. When we retire, we do not get full SS benefits. We do no get full Medicare benefits. PR, along with Hawaii and Alaska, is forced to use the American Merchant Marine, doubling shipping costs of everything. The Veteran Hospital, and services for the armed forces are pathetic compared to what our Vets get stateside.
    But, were happy….We’re proud and we have history…..

  23. A great reminder to the world that a Island so small, can produce amazing talent that has reached the international space station and beyond all corners of the world.

  24. Good post, just a few errors. Puerto Rico is not a country as stated in the article. PR is a commonwealth of the US and Puerto Ricans are American citizens.

    – “Puerto Rico is the country with the most cars per square mile in the world: 146 vehicles per street mile and 4,300 vehicles per square mile.”
    – “Puerto Rico is the third country in the world with more physicians in proportion to its population”

    Currently the crushing debt PR has is a serious concern. The population is getting older and the job situation is pretty bad. Not sure if Congress will bail PR out this time.


  25. I was born in Santurce. I am not an American. I am a Puertorican citizen of The United States. I am from the Caribbean, not from North, Central or South America therefore an American I am not. Que viva Puerto Rico!

  26. Ironically and sad to say, that even here in the states, after all these years when we are taught early on in our school years that Puertoricans are Americans wherever we may go, people still are oblivious to this fact, could care less or erased it from their minds, will make comments that are beyond believe. One common comment told to a friend; nevertheless, who was born in New York, was to “Go back to your country”, others will ask, “How did you get here or did you get off the boat”.

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