Posted by: r.m. | October 20, 2008

yes – we can

Activists block £145m development in Puerto Rico — and win!

“…For more than a year, protesters have camped in tents at the site as cranes and 15-storey tower blocks of luxury flats rose around them, cutting off public access to the fort that has fallen into disrepair behind padlocked iron gates. …They say that the construction is taking place on public land illegally sold by the government to a private developer, which has reneged on promises to maintain the fort and adjacent waterside walkways. Their protests are not just about the preservation of the 17th-century stronghold and its place in history. The environmentalists have chosen the Paseo Caribe development as a pivotal stand against the intense and largely unchecked pace of growth in Puerto Rico in recent years.

“This is public land that belongs to the people of Puerto Rico and what is happening here is illegal,” said Benito Reinosa, 77, an activist who joins the protest most days. “We were a small group but we have grown as people became aware of what was going on. We’ll keep fighting until these buildings are demolished.”

— The beauty and inspiration of this story is that it reveals, clearly, how a committed, truly committed, small group of people can win. They organized. They educated. They spread the word. And, gradually, they grew into such a large public force that the government was forced to listen to them, forced to rescind illegally-obtained construction permits, forced to protect public land.

They believed. They believed in their own power.

And they had that magical, powerful opium that those in power continually try to destroy: HOPE

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Responses

  1. I think what is right is right and it never dies…So we need to stand for what we believe in and defend it because at the end the force of the sound can never be shut down…we must fight against the power of money and the power of governments that all they want is more benefits and money in their banks. these efforts should increase to reach all the issues like global warming and climate changing…..

  2. Hope…. only usefull to a certain extent.

    “He who despairs over an event is a coward, but he who holds hope for the human condition is a fool.” (Alexandre Dumas)

    We could, by believing in our cause, win some battles; but to win the war, hope is not enough.

  3. This is a great achievment.Hope may not be enough to win the war,but without it we couldn’t even dream of the slightest victory.I pray that more people stand up for what they belive in,just like the Puertoricans, inorder to save our home.You have to start somewhere…


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