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Author: VOXXI

The Borinqueneers: The real story of Puerto Rican war heroes

No other time of year is more appropriate than during Hispanic Heritage Month to reclaim recognition of the Puerto Rican 65th Infantry Regiment, the only all-Hispanic unit in the history of the U.S. Army, better known as “The Borinqueneers.” The war courageous stories and sacrifices of tens of thousands of young Puerto Ricans enlisted to fight in World War I, World War II and the Korean War has been compiled and remarkably told in an award-winning film that premiered nationally in 2007. It is still being screened all across the country and abroad. “Our goal is not only to share this untold story of Puerto Ricans soldiers’ courage and patriotism but also to obtain proper Congressional recognition of their actions. We are asking Congress to award the 65th Infantry Regiment, also known as the Borinqueneers, with the Congressional Gold Medal,” said Noemi Figueroa Soulet, producer, director and writer of the film. The untold story of  The Borinqueneers Through interviews of members of the regiment that are still alive –most of them now in their eighties and nineties–, testimonies of former military officers and historians’ recounting, the documentary provides an objective unfolding of the facts while capturing the vivid memories of the veterans. “I have never talked to anyone about these memories,” said Vet. Ervin Machado, resident of Perth Amboy, NJ. “Not even to my family,” he shared with VOXXI as the...

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Michelle Obama gets a Puerto Rican communications director

The White House just got infused with a bit of Boricua flavor. The Office of the First Lady has announced that Puerto Rican Maria Cristina “MC” Gonzalez Noguera is joining the team as special assistant to President Barack Obama and communications director for First Lady Michelle Obama. Gonzalez Noguera will replace Kristina Schake, who is leaving to join L’Oreal. Coincidentally, Gonzalez Noguera is coming from the world of cosmetics — she is currently the global vice president of corporate communications for the Estee Lauder Companies. “While Kristina leaves big shoes to fill, MC brings a fresh perspective and a wealth of expertise that will make her an incredible asset to our team,” Michelle Obama said in a statement. “My time at the White House has been focused on ensuring all our children and families thrive, and as an experienced communications professional who shares my commitment to this mission, I know MC will be an outstanding partner.” As the first lady and the Washington Post noted, Schake is indeed leaving some very big shoes to fill. Schake was “at Obama’s side as she has stretched the traditional role of a first lady to include ‘mom dancing’ on Jimmy Fallon’s late-night talk show and presenting the best picture trophy at the Academy Awards.” But Gonzalez Noguera is up to the task. The Puerto Rican, who was born in the island’s capital, San Juan, has...

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GOP’s Latino problem could get worse with Steve King’s amendment

House Republicans just don’t get it. That was the message Latinos and immigrant rights advocates sent to the GOP on Thursday when nearly all House Republicans voted to approve an amendment to defund the deferred action program that currently allows undocumented youth to stay and work in the United States. The amendment to the Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill also restricts the DHS from implementing prosecutorial discretion policies that allow immigration officials to delay the deportations of undocumented immigrants who haven’t committed serious crimes and are considered “low-priority.” It was approved 224 to 201, with House members largely voting along party lines. Six Republicans voted against it and three Democrats voted for it. Immigration hard-liner Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), who offered the amendment, celebrated Thursday, saying his amendment would prohibit the Obama administration from implementing “executive amnesty.” He also warned that the passage of the amendment is “the first test of the 113th Congress in the House of Representatives on immigration.” “My amendment blocks many of the provisions that are mirrored in the Senate’s ‘Gang of Eight’ bill,” King said in a statement. “If this position holds, no amnesty will reach the president’s desk.” Latinos, immigrant rights leaders reject King’s amendment When King’s amendment passed, the House gallery erupted into a chorus of boos. And it didn’t take long after it passed for Latinos and immigrant rights leaders to begin condemning...

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Puerto Rican community offended by MillerCoors

MillerCoors is in some deep trouble with the Puerto Rican community after a recent controversy about the misuse of their flag. The image, which looks to be the Puerto Rican flag over an apple, appears under Spanish text designating Coors Light as the official beer of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade. MillerCoors, which has been criticized for its Puerto Rican Day Parade marketing in years past, is now under fire for an image on its Coors Light beer cans which combines the Puerto Rican flag and the Big Apple, ahead of the parade of which they are part sponsor of. This caused a lot of controversy within the Puerto Rican community. One man named Efrain Nieves took his outrage to Twitter and tweeted: “The flag of my motherland does not belong on a beer can!” An East Harlem City Councilor said that Coors Light official Puerto Rican Day Parade beer is “Disrespectful.” The National Institute for Latino Policy said that associating the Puerto Rican flag with Coors Light is “egregious.” According to the National Institute of Health, Puerto Ricans struggle with high rates of alcoholism. Puerto Ricans consume more alcoholic beverages per week than any other Hispanic group, with 16.9, according to data published by the institute’s website in 2011, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Demanding action There was an immediate backlash from...

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