Saturday, February 6, 2010

A Puerto Rican Lament (Lamento Borincano)

Sen. Hiran Monserrate

By Rafae Martínez Alequín

I remember growing up during the depression. The great Puerto Rican musical composer, Rafael Hernández, wrote Lamento Borincano, which became the mind and heart of the people. Practically the national anthem, instead, of the Borinqueña. During the ‘30s, anyone who played the Borinqueña, (now the national anthem), or displayed the Puerto Rican flag, were labeled as subversive. Now, this brings me back to what is going on amongst the Puerto Rican elected officials as well as the “leaders” of our community.

There are two state senators who are an embarrassment not only to the people of New York State, but an embarrassment to Puerto Ricans, who are proud of our island and culture. When Senator Pedro Espada, Jr. equated himself to the reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, this is not only an affront to Reverend King's memory, but it is an embarrassment to us. When convicted, Senator Hiram Monserrate equated himself, to the three Civil Rights workers (James Chaney, Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman) murdered August 4, 1964 in Philadelphia, Mississippi. He also, equated himself to Jesus Christ. It is an embarrassment to decent people, regardless of their ethnicity and religious views.

Why, have the Puerto Rican “leaders”, and elected officials kept mum, about these embarrassing issues?. On Monday, the State Senate, is meeting to decide the fate of Senator Monserrate. An informed source, on the condition of anonymity, informed me that Senator Monserrate will be expelled from the State Senate. They have the vote to expel him from both the Republicans and Democrats.

Senator Monserrate could do us all a favor and to himself by resigning.
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