Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda has joined protests in New York demanding the resignation of Puerto Rico’s governor, Ricardo Rosselló. Miranda led about 200 people, many from Puerto Rico, at a rally in Manhattan’s Union Square on Wednesday (July 17). They waved Puerto Rican flags and followed him to a drumbeat, chanting in Spanish, “Viva Puerto Rico libre,” which translates to “Long live free Puerto Rico.”
A leaked series of chat messages has compounded outrage over corruption. The messages show the governor and key aides mocking women, the disabled and Hurricane Maria victims.
Miranda said the alleged corruption surrounding the governor of the U.S. territory “is the last straw and Puerto Ricans are standing up against it.” Puerto Rico has been mired in crises, still struggling with debt and the aftermath of the 2017 hurricane that collapsed the country’s electrical system and left thousands dead.
The messages have drawn protests from the likes of Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny — who paused his European tour this week to go home and protest against Rosselló. Over the weekend, a nearly 900-page private group chat between Rosselló and several associates in his executive team was published, generating a wave of protests and doubts about decisions by the government. After the news, Bad Bunny reacted, posting a 10-minute video on Instagram. “This is about respect, to all Puerto Ricans,” said the singer, adding, “I live in Puerto Rico, my family lives in Puerto Rico, my friends. What happens in Puerto Rico matters to me.”