[Pnews] Oscar Lopez Rivera Grito de Lares Message

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Mon Sep 21 12:08:29 EDT 2015

*A Special Message on El Grito de Lares from Oscar López-Rivera*

/For the past thirty-four years, Oscar López-Rivera, the longest held 
political prisoner in Puerto Rican history, has commemorated El Grito de 
Lares from within a U.S. prison. From his cell in the Marion Federal 
Penitentiary, he wrote a brief reflection on the significance of El Grito. /

It’s very important to celebrate the Grito de Lares, especially to learn 
more about that glorious event and to have a good appreciation about the 
courageous men and women who dared to sow the seed of struggle for the 
independence and sovereignty of our beloved homeland. We can raise the 
question, why was the abolition of slavery so important to the heroic 
women and men who took up arms against Spanish colonialism?Would the 
Spaniards have abolished slavery without their uprising? Would the 
colonizers have continued taking Puerto Ricans for granted? Would the 
anti-colonial struggle have had the continuity it has been able to have 
without this event? If the Grito de Lares had not happened, could so 
many generations of Puerto Rican freedom fighters have given continuity 
to the anti-colonial struggle?

The best leaders, who have succeeded them and emulated their example, 
have looked at the Grito de Lares as the most important symbol of the 
Puerto Rican anti-colonial struggle. They have used it as a platform not 
only to raise consciousness, but also as one that will not allow Puerto 
Ricans to forget that we have the potential of becoming an independent 
and sovereign nation as long as we dare to struggle for it.

For us, El Grito de Lares is as important as the Grito de Dolores is to 
Mexicans and the Grito de Yara is to our Cuban brothers and sisters. The 
Grito de Lares was only the beginning of a revolutionary process. Its 
celebration in the Puerto Rican diaspora and in Puerto Rico confirms 
that our struggle to end colonialism continues, and that generation 
after generation has carried in its heart our national boricua identity. 
Indeed, the seed sown by the heroic women and men in the Grito de 
Lares—that 23 of September, 1868—has become a perennial one. Our 
struggle continues and victory will be ours because we dare to struggle 
and to win.


Oscar López-Rivera


National Boricua Human Rights Network
2739 W. Division Street
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