What You Should Know
By Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz
32nd Senatorial District
Weird Things Are Happening in New York’s Political Environment
You should know that here in New York’s political world, a lot of weird things are happening.
During my 15 years serving as a New York State Senator, I have witnessed many weird things, but in these last few days, there are things taking place that have many people scratching their heads.
The Board of Directors of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade have anointed Oscar López Rivera with the title of “National Freedom Hero,” causing great divisions among Puerto Ricans and bringing great damage to the 60th Annual Puerto Rican Day Parade.
Because of this decision by the National Puerto Rican Day Parade’s Board, elected officials are divided, and so are community leaders and family members.
Big sponsors such as Goya Foods, Jet Blue, NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill, the NYPD Lieutenants Benevolent Association, NYPD Sergeants Benevolent Association, NYPD Hispanic Society, the Rafael Ramos Foundation, and the NY Patrolmen's Benevolent Association's (PBA) are all withdrawing from the Parade, and many others are considering doing the same.
This mess, created by the Board of Directors of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade, has created worse divisions than Donald Trump’s election to the Presidency.
As you know, Oscar López Rivera served 35 years in Federal prison for seditious acts of conspiracy to overthrow the United States government, and for his ties to Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional (FALN), a militant group whose members were convicted of bombings while fighting for Puerto Rico’s independence.
Many accuse Oscar López Rivera of being involved in terrorist acts where people lost lives. Mr. Oscar López Rivera was never found guilty of killing anyone, and always maintained his innocence in any criminal act.
The Parade leaders have refused, as I have been suggesting, to rescind the “National Freedom Hero” title they have bestowed upon Oscar López Rivera, and just allow him to march as a plain Puerto Rican without any title.
By continuing this IN YOUR FACE decision, the Board of Directors is showing a weird way of wanting the best for the Parade and the Puerto Rican community.
There are more than 35 elected officials (and I am not one of them) who have signed a letter in support of the Board of Directors of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade to name Oscar López Rivera as a National Freedom Hero.
We all know that right now Puerto Rico is going through a serious financial situation where families are suffering, schools are being closed, services have been forced to be cut, and the Island remains in debt of more than 100 billion dollars.
Instead of naming Oscar López Rivera a National Puerto Rican hero and joining elected officials together to do this, the Board of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade should be concentrating better on bringing attention to the fiscal situation in Puerto Rico.
As everyone knows, there are thirty-two (32) Democratic Senators here in the New York Senate are fragmented into two different Conferences: the Regular Democratic Conference led by Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins, and the Independent Democratic Conference led by Senator Jeff Klein.
There are many forces working very hard to bring them together and unite all Democratic Senators into just one Conference, as it used to be.
Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins and her Deputy, Senator Mike Gianaris have even made public statements, asking for the eight Members of the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC) to come back into the fold.
But at the same time, they are asking for an investigation into the way Republicans and the Members of the IDC are distributing stipends to Committee Leaders.
This is a weird way of asking for unity!
Since Donald Trump became President of the United States of America, our beloved Governor Andrew Cuomo has been a constant thorn in his side.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has been the biggest critic of President Donald Trump, even calling for an investigation of President Trump. Governor Andrew Cuomo has been planning his own future presidential ambitions, trying to be seen an alternative to Donald Trump, and trying to act like one of Donald Trump’s worst nightmares.
Now that New York City’s subway system is in a chaotic state and everyone is criticizing the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), our great Governor Andrew Cuomo has written a letter to Donald Trump (practically begging) for President Trump to come to his aid to save the MTA.
This is a weird way of asking for help from someone you dislike.
These are some of the weird things happening in New York’s political system, and I am sharing them to you.
I am Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz, and this is what you should know.