People walk on a flooded street in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in San Juan, Puerto Rico on September 22, 2017.
Puerto Rico battled dangerous floods after Hurricane Maria ravaged the island, as rescuers raced against time to reach residents trapped in their homes and the death toll climbed. Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello called Maria the most devastating storm in a century after it destroyed the US territory's electricity and telecommunications infrastructure.

People walk on a flooded street in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in San Juan, Puerto Rico on September 22, 2017. Puerto Rico battled dangerous floods after Hurricane Maria ravaged the island, as rescuers raced against time to reach residents trapped in their homes and the death toll climbed. Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello called Maria the most devastating storm in a century after it destroyed the US territory's electricity and telecommunications infrastructure.

Millions of Americans are suffering without food, clean water or electricity after Hurricane Maria. But they don’t live on the mainland, therefore their struggles are being reported as if they were in a far-off, unrelated nation.

Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens. We’ll say it again: Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens. And many of them are questioning why the domestic response to the devastation there has been lacking.

How would it be different if Maria had devastated the continental U.S. on the same scale? What are U.S. lawmakers and leaders doing to help the island?

Guests

  • Yarimar Bonilla Professor of anthropology and Caribbean studies, Rutgers University; author, Non-Sovereign Futures: French Caribbean Politics in the Wake of Disenchantment
  • Justin Vélez-Hagan Founder, the National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce; author, "The Common Sense Behind Basic Economics"
  • Tim Padgett Americas Editor, WLRN

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