Univision senior news anchor Jorge Ramos continues to push predictably one-sided coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane María’s devastation in Puerto Rico. As evidenced in his weekly Al Punto program, even a known terrorist sympathizer is an acceptable guest so long as he contributes to Ramos' favored narrative, which is decidely both anti-Trump and against the current Governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló.
Getting right down to business, Ramos asked Univision Music recording artist Residente to explain his criticism of Governor Rosselló and President Trump. Specifically, Ramos queried Residente about his contention that Rosselló should 'stand up' to Trump, who he said has only 'disrespected' Puerto Ricans (never mind the billions in aid the President has authorized for disaster response and rebuiliding).
RAMOS: …..has to be stronger when defending us as a country. What do you mean?
RESIDENTE: Well, when…the easiest and most obvious example is when Donald Trump came and all he did was disrespect all Boricuas, all Puerto Ricans…
Residente reliably echoed most - if not all - of Ramos’ arguments regarding Puerto Rico, down to the deliberately twisted rehashing of Trump’s paper towel-tossing incident (which MRC Latino exposed here via an eyewitness account). Residente's criticism of the Governor also mirrored the points that Ramos tried to push in an earlier dreadful interview with Governor Rosselló.
By now it is pretty clear that Jorge Ramos will only feature a select few guests (outside of the island’s elected officials) on issues related to Puerto Rico- and Residente is one of those guests. In this regard, the guest's importance is as a validating instrument- a means to an end with which Ramos can continue to misrepresent unpopular positions as being within the mainstream- in this case, support for Puerto Rican independence, which on its best day has never surpassed 5% at the polls.
In fairness, Residente is an easy pick. After all, here's how he spun the incarceration of convicted FALN terrorist Oscar López Rivera:
RESIDENTE, RECORDING ARTIST: So this guy believed in the independence [of Puerto Rico]. He was in jail because of his beliefs.
...They didn’t have anything on him, you see? So they just created “seditious conspiracy.” They created that in order to put him in jail, so. And they do that when they can’t find anything.
As I said back then, it wasn't the belief in independence that got López Rivera locked up; it was the six pounds of dynamite and four blasting caps found in López Rivera's apartment, plus the attempted escape from federal prison. But facts take a back seat to narrative, whether it's the deification of a terrorist or Jorge Ramos' endless war against Donald Trump.
But can Residente be taken seriously as an authority on anything other than his own music? More importantly, can Jorge Ramos be trusted to accurately cover the important news of the day? On both counts, a resounding no.
Jorge Ramos claims to be that guy that is unafraid to ask tough questions. But nowhere in the interview (or on the podcast with raw audio) did Ramos ask Residente about his prevoius failure in an interview with CNN to answer a simple question on whether Venezuela is a dictatorship - which should be tantamount to a major moral failing in the eyes of someone who claims to "take a stand" against dictatorships and human rights abuses.
Here's how Residente gagged when asked the simple question of whether Venezuela is a dictatorship (full transcript here):
MARIA SANTANA, CORRESPONDENT, CNN EN ESPANOL: Do you believe Venezuela is now living in a dictatorship?
RESIDENTE: I don't live there, bro. I can talk to you about Puerto Rico and the United States, which are the two countries that affect me, and I'm living here in the United States, and I know what's going on.
That Ramos would go for over thirteen minutes without asking Residente a single question about this is simply appalling. No knock on Residente, who is a known quantity and makes no effort to conceal his ideological proclivities. He's the most transparent of all in that exchange.
Ramos, on the other hand, has built this late-career run on an aura of moral authority. His willingness to turn a blind eye to Residente's unwillingness to call a dictatorship a dictatorship is a betrayal of the moral code he seeks to impose upon others, and does incalculable harm to the millions of Puerto Ricans still digging out of the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.