Most deny it, few see it and even fewer admit to its existence. But racism can be seen in all aspects of Puerto Rican society. It isn't as apparent as the class division that exists on the island. But then again, it can be argued that color is the defining factor of classes.
From childhood, we are sold the idea that Puerto Ricans are a mix-race comprised of Spanish, African and Indigenous roots. For the most part it's true, but do the institutions relfect this reality? The next time you think about racism in Puerto Rico, ask yourself these few questions:
1) Are 80% of Puerto Ricans really "white (light-skin)"? When I walk the streets of San Juan, are 8 of the 10 people I see "white"?
2) How many "black (dark-skin)" people do I see walking the halls of Plaza Las Americas? On the contrary, how many "white" people do I see walking down Paseo de Diego in Rio Piedras?
3) How many representatives in the Puerto Rican House are "black"? (To see for youself, click here.)
4) How many senators in the Puerto Rican Senate are "black"?
5) In this year's elections, how many candidates are "black"?
6) When was the last time Puerto Rico had an influential "black" leader? (Barbosa, Albizu Campos, Don Chu?)
7) How many "blacks" live in gated communities, urbanizaciones?