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Should Puerto Rico become a US state or independent?
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The US colonized Puerto Rico

The US has traditionally been opposed to colonialism by foreign nations. Yet, the US took Puerto Rico as a “prize” from the Spanish-American war.

The Argument

Throughout history, both political parties have criticized European nations for colonizing foreign nations. Whether that be militarily or diplomatically, the US has notoriously been opposed to puppet governments in foreign nations. It's time America adheres to its own rules. Puerto Rico never wanted to be a US state. Before the US colonized Puerto Rico, the Spanish controlled the island. After the short-lived Spanish-American War, Puerto Rico was taken a "prize" along with the Philippines under the Treaty of Paris in 1898.[1] The issue was heavily contested on the island, with Puerto Rican politicians claiming the Spanish had no right to cede the island to the US as they no longer controlled it after a Puerto Rican revolution in 1897.[2] The US paid no attention to these claims and effectively silenced dissent with threats, persecution, and assassinations. While politicians in the US have frequently used American isolationism or "America First" as a reason to not get involved in conflicts abroad, the occupation and colonization of Puerto Rico are noticeably absent from those arguments.[3] If the US really wants to fix its own problems before worrying about troubles abroad, it should award Puerto Rico its independence.

Counter arguments

Western colonialism isn't always a bad thing. The US has a fraught history with colonialism but has largely helped its colonies and territories in the 21st century. The US colonizing Puerto Rico may actually have prevented the island from falling deeper into an economic depression and saved it from the grasps of tyranny. [4]



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Thursday, 29 Oct 2020 at 18:36 UTC

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