In July of 1898, amidst the Spanish American War, the United States made a move to invade Puerto Rico, setting off a chain of events that unfolded over the years. The small island of Puerto Rico rests in the Caribbean Sea, and is tied to the United States as an unincorporated territory.

The United States has committed several atrocities in Puerto Rico, a handful of which will be outlined here:


Also called “La isla nena,” Vieques is Puerto Rican municipality inhabited by over 9,000 viequenses. Vieques consists of about 134 square miles of land, or about 33,000 acres. The United States decided to use the area for Naval training exercises and tests starting in 1941. Over the course of that year, the U.S. took control of 70% of the island, or about 22,600 acres.

The United States would bomb Vieques for 55 years, ending in May of 2003. Over the course of this time, the island accrued 22 million pounds of military and industrial waste. Over 23,000 bombs were dropped on the island, and many of the island’s inhabitants suffer from the consequences.

Cancer rates in this region are almost 30 percent higher than on the mainland, and toxic chemicals in the groundwater have risen to dangerous levels, violating World Health Organization standards.

Experimentation with radiation

Pedro Albizu Campos

In 1994 during Bill Clinton’s term as president, the United States Department of Energy released information detailing the United State’s involvement in unsanctioned radiation experiments conducted on Puerto Rican prisoners during the 1950s and 1970s.

One man the United States experimented on was Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos, an iconic leader of the Puerto Rican independence movement. After telling the world of his being experimented on, the United States responded with claims that he was insane.

Pedro passed away in 1965, and was carried to Old San Juan Cemetery by over 75,000 Puerto Ricans.

Dr. Cornelius Rhoads

Tumblr Lzmwvp4Vuv1Qerzk1O1 400

As an American doctor and pathologist, Dr. Cornelius Rhoads is widely known for his extreme methods of experimentation on humans. Funded largely by the Rockefeller Institute, Rhoads infected numerous Puerto Rican citizens with cancer cells; thirteen of which died.

After an investigation conducted in 2003 by bioethicist Dr. Jay Katz, it was found that many of the accusations against Rhoads could be proven by documentation.

In one document, Rhoads wrote: “The Porto Ricans [sic] are the dirtiest, laziest, most degenerate and thievish race of men ever to inhabit this sphere… I have done my best to further the process of extermination by killing off eight and transplanting cancer into several more… All physicians take delight in the abuse and torture of the unfortunate subjects.”

La Operacion

As part of FDR’s “Operation Bootstrap,” Puerto Rican women suffered the consequences of a female sterilization policy implemented in the 1950s and 60s. La Operacion is a documentary illustrating this policy’s effects on Puerto Rican citizens. By the early 70s, almost 35% of Puerto Rican women were sterile. By 1981 this number would rise to close to 40%.

One of the largest criticisms of this policy is that a large number of Puerto Rican women were misled about what the sterilization process entailed, as well as how the process would affect them.

Puerto Rican Status

Puerto Rico Us

While Puerto Rico has been recognized as a United States territory for over 100 years, its citizens lack many basic rights while having to obey United States federal law. Puerto Ricans cannot vote for presidential or congressional candidates, and the person designated to represent them, the Resident Commissioner, cannot vote on legislation. As you can imagine, this means an entire people largely has no say in how their territory is governed.

One of the most extreme examples of how this affects Puerto Rico every day is the 1920 Jones Act. This law demands that any goods purchased by Puerto Rico must be transported to the island through the United States Merchant Marine, which is one of the most expensive operations functioning today.

It’s been estimated that Puerto Rico would save about $150 million in product export if this law did not exist. This would allow them to lower prices and become competitive in the global market. Not to mention, other United States territories, like the Virgin Islands, do not have to abide by the same laws as Puerto Rico.

h/t ListVerse

Read More


This Unique Spanish Home Was Built Under a Rolling Hill and Is Completely Eco-Friendly

You wouldn’t know there was a home resting inside of this rolling hillside were it not for the roof sloping downward over a parked car and bicycles. Known as the Live Garden House, this vaulted home was built into a hillside and features traditional construction techniques practiced in Zaragoza, Spain.

Spanish designers sought to create a fully sustainable home that used locally-sourced materials for its construction. They achieve their vision with this zero-energy structure that lets in natural sunlight, has a natural ventilation system and features a rainwater collection system.

All of its sustainable features are made even better by placing them underneath an undulating green roof (which has plants and vegetation growing on top of it). Not only does the home look beautiful inside, it fits in perfectly with the surrounding landscape.

And the inside is just as welcoming and serene as the outside. Take a look for yourself!

h/t Inhabitat

Read More

The REAL Reason Barns Are Usually Red

Almost every barn I’ve ever seen has been red, and I never knew why. I mean, I love red as a color, but it never really made any sense why every single barn I’ve ever come across had to be red. There are so many other colors to choose from!

The real reason barns are painted red actually has nothing to do with color preference, and everything to do with practicality.

When the very first New England settlers were building farms, many of them lacked the necessary funds to paint their buildings. However, they still needed a way to protect their barns’ wood from the elements, so they came up with their own solution to the problem: by mixing skim milk, lime, and red iron oxide, they successfully created a plastic-like substance that they could coat their farm buildings with to protect them.

Eventually, paint manufacturers would mix in chemical pigment and red was the favorite due to how cheap it was. And, as with many things in this world, people never sought to change it. So, red was how it began and red is how it has stayed.

h/t Business Insider

Read More

Professor Who Predicted Donald Trump Becoming President Has a New Prediction: Impeachment

Image via: Max Goldberg from USA - Trump CAUCUS

Allan Lichtman, a professor at American University, has gained quite a bit of notoriety over the years as he’s successfully predicted the outcome of every presidential election to date, starting in 1984. He correctly predicted the Donald Trump would win the 2016 election and is now making another prediction: Donald Trump will be impeached.

"Now, he focuses on the 45th President of the United States and his next forecast, that it is not a question of if President Trump will be impeached, but a question of when," said Shelby Meizlik, spokesperson for HarperCollins.

In fact, Lichtman has written a book stating his argument for why Trump should be impeached. The Case for Impeachment is being published by Dey Street Books and will release to the public on April 18th.

Lichtman made the prediction that Trump would be impeached alongside his prediction that he would be elected and his book will go into detail as to why.

Lichtman told the Washington Post this past September:

"I'm going to make another prediction. This one is not based on a system; it's just my gut. They don't want Trump as president, because they can't control him. He's unpredictable. They'd love to have Pence — an absolutely down-the-line, conservative, controllable Republican. And I'm quite certain Trump will give someone grounds for impeachment, either by doing something that endangers national security or because it helps his pocketbook."

It certainly seems as though there is a strong case for impeachment, especially when considering Trump's Russian connections and the multitude of conflicts of interests surrounding his businesses, as Lichtman argues.

Do you think Lichtman’s fortune-telling capabilities will ring true once again?

h/t Time

Read More

6 Bizarrely Beautiful Houseplants You've Probably Never Heard Of

Houseplants are a great addition to any home as not only do they bring a clean, fresh aesthetic to the space, they also help improve air quality. If you’ve ever wanted to bring plants into your home, but think that they’re kind of boring or not worth the effort, try out one of these bizarre houseplants that are anything but boring.

Mix it up a little with these six houseplants that are beautiful, but also a little strange.

Euphorbia Caput-Medusae
Succulents a great option for everyone who’s looking for a low-maintenance plant. They only need watering about once a week and even just once a month during the winter months. The type of succulent shown here is referred to as “Medusa’s Head,” a moniker taken on because of its likeness to the Greek monster with snakes for hair. It is native to South Africa.

The Trachyandra also looks as if it’s some type of snake plant, or maybe silly-string growing out of the ground. This plant is real and you can find it in Eastern and Southern Africa.

If you’ve ever wanted a plant that looks somewhat like it has antlers, grab a Platycerium. This plant, which is often called the “Staghorn Fern”, can even grow on the side of things, such as trees or walls.

Gentiana Urnula
These beautifully-patterned succulents are known as “Starfish Succulents” and are at home in the rocks. These are also a perfect option for those seeking low-maintenance plants.

Sedum Morganianum
These crazy looking plant is often called “Donkey Tail” and its stems regularly grow up to two feet in length. Its leaves are normally a bluish-green and it is native to Mexico and Honduras.

Haworthia Cooperi
This plant looks like some type of glass flower or maybe even some type of gelatin, but these clumps you see here are actually green leaves that simply look as though they’re something else.

h/t Woman's Day

Read More

Please Wait...Loading