NYC’s Puerto Rican Day Parade has long been an occasion for city dwellers to let their freak flags fly, and this year is no different. In fact, parade organizers are doubling down on their radical leftist tendencies by honoring a convicted terrorist, Oscar López Rivera, with a “National Freedom Hero” award.
Just one small thing … López Rivera just last week finished serving 35 years in jail for his part in terrorist activities that resulted in the deaths of ten Americans and the maiming of a dozen others. López Rivera was a part of Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional (FALN), a Marxist-Leninist paramilitary group that used violence in the 1970s and 80s to advocate for Puerto Rican independence. He claimed at the time to be an anti-colonial combatant, and argued that he couldn’t be prosecuted. (He also denies being a terrorist: “I do not have blood on my hands, and that’s why I cannot be a terrorist,” he said after he was released on May 17.)
Prosecutors begged to differ, and he received a 55 year sentence that Obama commuted last year.
Parade sponsors are horrified at the decision of the parade committee to honor this guy, who played a role in forever denying ten Americans their freedoms, with a freedom award.
Police groups were among the first to pull out of the parade, with the NYPD and the NYPD’s Hispanic Society announcing their intention to boycott. The FDNY officers’ union and FDNY Hispanic Society on Tuesday announced the same.
Other major corporations and parade mainstays including the New York Yankees, AT&T and JetBlue will also boycott the parade. Latin-American food giant Goya Foods also has pulled its sponsorship, but wouldn’t attribute the decision to the López Rivera invite.
Bravo to these organizations for taking a stand against the parade’s radical agenda. And shame on Mayor Bill DiBlasio, who announced his plans to attend the parade, saying, “All things considered, I understand why so many Puerto Ricans in this city respect that he fought for Puerto Rico, in their eyes.”
WTH?! On the heels of the terrorist act that just occurred in Manchester, DiBlasio should immediately state his intention not to attend, and parade organizers should show a shred of humanity and rescind the award. Americans have precious little tolerance for this buffoonery.