Puerto Rico Mónica Ramos Alexander Vélez Kyle Ishman Madison Weitekamp Aaron Durka History Before European Contact • • • • • • • Chain of islands located between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean Known to have been inhabited by Native Americans as early as 300 B.C First settlers were the Ortoiroid people regarded by historians as the first human settlers of the caribbean. Eventually a group of people known as the Tainos inhabited P.R, and became the dominate culture of the island from the eleventh to fifteenth century. Taino people lived in small villages and survived off of hunting, fishing, and gathering of indigenous fruits and crops. During the time the Tainos inhabited Puerto Rico, they called it Boriken which translates to “Land of the great lords” When Christopher Columbus discovered the Island on his second voyage, there were about 50,000 Taino people living there. History After European Contact ● 1508-1898, Spanish colony providing Spain with cattle, sugar-cane, tobacco, and gold. ● 1898, Spanish-American War. ● The war resulted in “Treaty of Paris” which gave the U.S indefinite control over P.R ● 1900, Foraker Act established. Apointed governor and formally recognized P.R citizenship ● 1914-1918, World War I. In 1917, Jones Act amends the Foraker Act and it made P.R an unincorporated by organized territory of the U.S ● 1947, Puerto Ricans allowed to elect their Governor ● 1950, Law 600 is passed granting Puerto Ricans to draw their own Constitution based on U.S Federal Constitution October 1950, Nationalist Insurrection in Jayuya, Utuado, San Juan and other cities. U.S re-declares martial law and suppresses insurrection with infantry, artillery, and dropping bombs. History • 1952, Revised Constitution passed entering the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (Estado Libre Asociado) • 1954, Three men lead by women nationalist, Lolita Lebron, fired shots at U.S Capitol in protest for Puerto Rican status. • 1980’s, Macheteros Insurrection. Its leader, Filiberto Ojeda Ríos, killed by FBI in 2005. • 2012, Last Referendum Status ● ● ● ● US territory for 100+ years Jones Act 1917 4 referendums later… Currently ○ Voting rights ○ Cabotage laws ● How are puerto ricans “American”? ○ citizenship ○ Army ○ US Postal Services Rights ● Must obey American Laws ● Do not have voting representation in U.S. Congress ● Merchant Marine ○ Would save Puerto Rican’s $150 Million ● Do not vote for president ● Covered Under Obamacare The Movement for Statehood Background ● This is the 5th referendum for statehood ● The first referendum for statehood was in 1951 and resulted in Puerto Rico becoming a Commonwealth in 1952 ● The last referendum failed to find a majority for statehood in November 2012 The Last Referendum ● The vote was cast in a two-part system: ○ Voters asked yes or no to current status ○ If answered no, there are three options: ■ Statehood ■ Independence ■ Enhanced Commonwealth Latest on Puerto Rican Status... • The Obama administration has expressed support for Puerto Rican statehood, if chosen by Puerto Ricans. ● In January 2014, Obama approved $2.5 million federal funds to be sent to Puerto Rico in support of yet another referendum to determine Puerto Rico’s political status.