SANTA MIERDA NARANJA, PUERTO RICO — Juan Carlos de Maria Sanchez is an American citizen who happens to live on the island of Puerto Rico. Sanchez is in his mid-thirties, but has visited the mainland of the United States numerous times as he has family in Florida, New York, and California. Juan says he loves living in Puerto Rico, and despite the horrific devastation that Hurricane Maria wrought, he is confident that he and his fellow Puerto Ricans can rebuild again.
“This is absolutely a nightmare of epic scale and proportions,” Martinez told our reporter, “but I know that we here in Puerto Rico are fuerte. We are resolute. We will rebuild this island once more.”
Sanchez says he loves being an American even though he doesn’t live in a state in the union. He says that the “rich cultural traditions of Puerto Rico” make him proud to be “part of the fabric in the quilt that makes America what it is.” As much as he loves Puerto Rico, he also loves quite a bit about American culture.
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“I love hamburgers, apple pie, baseball, and I even though my first love is soccer, American rules football is pretty great too,” Sanchez says.
Being without power, when we asked Juan Carlos for his thoughts on NFL teams and players kneeling during the national anthem, he said he wasn’t familiar with the controversy.
“America is kick-ass and all,” Sanchez told us, “but I’ve been just a little too busy trying to survive and shit to pay attention to who’s making a political statement and who isn’t. But as soon as the power comes on, I look forward to being offended by kneeling people like the rest of my fellow Americans, I guess.”
Mr. Sanchez told us that he sees the American flag, the pledge of allegiance, and the National Anthem as “fun symbols of shared life experiences” but not much more.
“Look, I love America like anyone else does,” Juan Carlos admitted, “but if we didn’t have a flag, and didn’t have a national song, I’d still say our Constitution is pretty bad ass, and that’s what gives the players the right to protest. Of course, the irony is that it also gives people a right to be offended and express their outrage. The Constitution is pretty kick ass like that.
Juan Carlos says he’s a little nervous that after he gets his power back, he might still not be all that offended by NFL players kneeling, and he hopes that doesn’t cause him to lose his citizenship in a Trump administration.
“I mean, call me crazy, but we see people kneeling in this country all the time,” Sanchez said, “If they’re praying, they’re kneeling. If they’re stooping down to be in a picture, maybe they’re kneeling. If they’re thanking their friends in the Russian government for helping to subvert democracy and install them as president, they’re on their knees with their mouths wide open. It seems to me that kneeling or not kneeling is the very definition of freedom, but fuck me, I know.”
Still, Mr. Sanchez says out of solidarity, he’ll try his best to get offended when he finally sees players kneel.
“I mean, you know, I’ll really hard to be more offended by them kneeling than I am about people who look like me getting shot for no reason by cops,” Sanchez said, “I’ll try reallllly, realllllly hard at that.”
Current estimates are that it could take weeks or months for the entire island of Puerto Rico to have power re-established.