June 19-21, 2020
San Juan The
Why Wine? Why Burgundy?
The Non-Elected Governor’s Theatrical, Political Message Vázquez Delivers FY21 Budget Message Full of Promises with Political Tone at Fine Arts Center Applauds Confirmed Labor Secretary, Takes Credit for Inevitable Curfew
Sorry, Trump: Secretary of Labor Confirmed Supreme Court Rules After Racially Charged Hearings DACA Stays P4 P7 NOTICIAS EN ESPAÑOL P 19
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
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The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Rivera Santiago confirmed as Labor secretary amid allegations of racism By THE STAR STAFF
fter almost a week of public and executive hearings, the Puerto Rico Senate on Thursday confirmed Carlos Rivera Santiago as secretary of the Department of Labor and Human Resources. Senators from the majority New Progressive Party voted in favor of the confirmation, while nearly all of the minority members of the upper chamber -- including Puerto Rican Independence Party Sen. Juan Dalmau Ramírez, independent Sen. José Vargas Vidot and all but one member of the Popular Democratic Party (PDP) delegation -- voted against it. PDP Sen. Cirilo Tirado Rivera recused himself. After the voice vote, PDP Sen. Eduardo Bhatia Gautier recorded his vote against. Rivera Santiago has been singled out for his participation as attorney for minors in the island Justice Department during a 2017 case involving then-11-year-old Alma Yariela Cruz Cruz, who was the subject of a judicial process stemming from a fight between students at a school in Carolina. The Justice Department pursued several criminal charges against Cruz Cruz, a special needs student who is black, for a year
before withdrawing its case, in a prosecutorial effort some observers are saying was racist in nature. In addition to listening to testimony from Rivera Santiago, the Senate Appointments Committee also evaluated the public testimonies of the mother of Cruz Cruz, as well as the mother of another girl who claimed to have been harmed by Cruz Cruz
in the incident. The latter mother reiterated on several occasions that the case was not one of racism since her daughter, like Cruz Cruz, is black. “Today after having examined all the documentation, having listened to all the parties, having evaluated all the documents, including the audio of an oral hearing in the Court of Appeals, and having heard the
attorney Carlos Rivera Santiago say ‘I don’t know why they accuse me that way because I am also black,’ in my duty to listen to other colleagues … I will now have to vote,” Rivera Schatz said. “If he fails, I warn him in front of my teammates, ‘I will go after you.’” The Senate president used part of his speech before the vote to criticize the work of the press in its coverage of the hearing process. He called the press “hitmen, slanderers and liars.” Appointments Committee Chairman Héctor Martínez Maldonado said when announcing the appointment that “I will not be the executioner of anyone, much less of a nominee, such that if I let myself be carried away by information that came out through the media, then I would have lynched him.” “That is why we have to listen to all the parts and avoid prejudice,” Martínez Maldonado added. “There are people who use that for political advantage.” Meanwhile, thousands continue to camp out in front of the Pedro Rosselló Convention Center in San Juan to be assigned a number and finally receive an unemployment check in what has been a drawn-out, chaotic process and promises to be a trial by fire for the new Labor chief.
Ex-Rep. Narden Jaime Espinosa, 9 other officials to be investigated by SIP By THE STAR STAFF
ormer Rep. Narden Jaime Espinosa and nine other officials who provided services in his office will be investigated by special independent prosecutors (SIPs), it was learned Thursday. The Puerto Rico Office of the Special Independent Prosecutor Panel (SIP Panel) announced that it evaluated and justified the preliminary investigation report referred to it by the commonwealth Justice Department (DJ) about the former officials. Based on the report’s findings, the SIP Panel concluded that there is sufficient cause to mandate that a thorough investigation be conducted in the matter, because the conduct attributed to the former officials involved is in violation of the crimes indicated in the report sent by the DJ. The Panel Resolution identifies the following ex-officials as objects of the assigned investigation: Narden Jaime, Norberto Olmeda Pérez, Grandi Liz López Pagán, Myrna de Lean Vega, Deborah González Martínez,
Elizabeth Reyes Orellano, Alexandro López López, Ismael Mercado Casilla, Loida González Gerena and Lizette Piñero Peña. In the aforementioned resolution, it is pointed out that the DJ attributes to the former officials a series of crimes as authors, co-authors and co-operators. Such crimes include: falsification of public documents, falsification of endorsement petitions for primaries (commonly called “list emptying”), identity theft, illegal appropriation of public funds, embezzlement of public funds and fraud. In addition, violations of the Electoral Law and the Office of Government Ethics Law are alleged. “As for Luis Miguel Berríos Fontánez, who was special assistant to the former representative, the [SIP] was not appointed because [the report] did not have evidence under oath of the illegal acts attributed to him,” the SIP Panel said. “This, by itself, does not entail his exoneration” and will not prevent the SIP from obtaining information under oath that
involves Berríos Fontánez in any illegal act, or from expanding the investigation and proceeding according to law, the Panel added. The SIP Panel appointed Zulma Fuster
Troche as special independent prosecutor and Miguel Colón as deputy prosecutor to carry out a thorough investigation, for which they are granted a period of 90 days, as of June 18.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
P3 Authority: PREPA T&D deal should remain secret By THE STAR STAFF
uerto Rico’s Private Public Partnership (P3) Authority insists that the contract that would put the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s (PREPA) transmission and distribution (T&D) system under private management should remain confidential until it is a done deal. The P3 Authority made its remarks in a document filed with the Puerto Rico Energy Bureau (PREB) on Wednesday in which it opposed a prior petition from the Electrical Industry and Irrigation Workers Union (UTIER by its Spanish acronym) to have access to the contract. The UTIER made the request earlier this week after learning the P3 Authority had on May 18 sought a certificate of energy compliance for the contract. “The request to intervene fails at the outset because there is no right to intervene – by UTIER or any other party – in this proceeding,” the P3 Authority said. “The request to disclose confidential information is likewise doomed. The information at issue here is confidential pursuant to applicable laws and regulations, and such laws and regulations are narrowly tailored to protect
compelling public interests.” Likewise, the P3 Authority rejected UTIER’s request for an extension of the 30day period the PREB has to evaluate the T&D contract and issue the certificate of compliance because, the Authority maintains, it is contrary to law. The PREB on June 9 granted the P3 Authority’s request to keep the contract documents confidential, but UTIER insisted PREB should overturn its decision. The P3 Authority told the PREB on Wednesday that the T&D contract contains no provision that would restrict or limit in any way the rights, responsibilities or authority granted to PREB under applicable laws and regulations. The Authority says documents related to the contract should be kept secret, including a memorandum and an attachment filed with the regulator as part of the request for the Certificate of Energy Compliance, until the contract is approved at all levels and the transformation contract is executed. “… [T]he P3 Authority requests that the PREB keep the documents confidential until the execution of the transformation contract,” the P3 Authority said.
Housing chief: Some home reconstruction estimates may be inflated By JOHN McPHAUL firstname.lastname@example.org
uerto Rico Housing Secretary Luis Fernández Trinchet expressed his concern on Thursday with the estimates that he has seen so far for the reconstruction of homes with funds from the Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) Program. “We are going to check first -- and that was what I asked the CDBG-DR group last night [Wednesday] -- if indeed the house is one of those that falls under
Housing Secretary Luis Fernández Trinchet
the R3 (Repair, Reconstruction or Relocation) program, and two, that they verify those costs [of estimates]; that is, what is behind those numbers to verify if it makes sense that according to what the house is or what the house appraisal is, and if those numbers make any sense with what is being sought in Puerto Rico,” the secretary said in response to questions from the press. Asked if he saw any repair estimate that would seem to be exaggerated, Fernández Trinchet replied, “say that $6,000 will be spent for a nine-foot by six-foot bathroom; for me it is a pretty high amount.” “Last night we spoke with the CBDG-DR group to investigate,” he added. Fernández Trinchet participated in a meeting of several agency heads and mayors at the Pedro Rosselló Convention Center in Miramar to prepare for the hurricane season, which officially began June 1. The Housing Department is in charge of shelters. “To say that at this time all the shelters have a cistern or have electrical generators is not going to be correct,” the Housing chief said. “What is happening is that the work team has been visiting the shelters since last night.” State Emergency Management and Disaster Administration Bureau Commissioner José Burgos noted that the purpose of the meeting was to emphasize the role of each agency head in an emergency declaration. “What we want them to understand is that if I am
the lead agency and I have two or three agencies, those coordinators have to know each other well and those agency heads have to understand that at some point they are going to be the lead agency or at some other time they will have to support another secretary in an emergency,” Burgos said.
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The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Comptroller reacts to sexual harassment allegation against ex-deputy By JOHN McPHAUL firstname.lastname@example.org
omptroller Yesmín Valdivieso reacted Thursday to allegations by a group of former auditors about an alleged incident of sexual harassment involving former Deputy Comptroller Jesús Rosario, as well as other allegations, less than two weeks before her appointment expires. “I don’t know why they are bringing these things out now …” Valdivieso said in a radio interview. “What the law always requires is that they be kept confidential. The reality is that when things appear, they get fixed; you do what has to be done to make sure any mistakes are fixed. … I don’t want to go into [the details] because with all these things they are trying to hurt me, and they are actually hurting the people who are saying what happened with him. The reality is that here we have a double standard. From what you have told me, there is nothing they can tell me: ‘This happened and the comptroller did nothing.’” According to the allegation, two employees filed a complaint with the agency’s Human Capital Division against Rosario in October 2019 for alleged sexual harassment. It was indicated that Rosario resigned from his post after the complaints were filed. Meanwhile, it was alleged that the case
was not disclosed to the media, since Valdivieso supposedly had issued what amounted to a “gag order” over those types of complaints in the agency. It was further alleged that Valdivieso appointed her childhood friend, Miriam Contreras Amador, as assistant administrative comptroller with a salary of about $8,000 a month. The latter, who has been in the agency for more than nine years, allegedly has an associate degree in interior decoration and is not an accountant. Still, she has allegedly served as acting comptroller. “She is not a certified public accountant, but she has the experience,”Valdivieso said, noting that Contreras Amador had worked in the administration area in other agencies. She added that “Miriam remains as acting comptroller since I have no subcontractor.” “The truth is that I had Nathanael Arroyo for many years until he retired,” Valdivieso said. “I believed that since I was leaving, I should not appoint some subcontractor and leave that position to be determined by the next comptroller. “If the auditors had a problem with that, they should have told me from the beginning. … In nine years no one questioned me. It worries me because if they had any questions and they were silent, what kinds of auditors are they?” The comptroller said she is suspicious that the accusations
are being made in the final days of her 10-year term. Valdivieso was appointed in 2010 by former Gov. Luis Fortuño and her appointment expires on June 30. However, she will continue as comptroller until a new comptroller is appointed and confirmed.
Transportation Bureau to resume passenger services. Here is what we know By JOHN McPHAUL email@example.com
he Bureau of Transportation and Other Public Services (NTSP by its Spanish initials) announced details Thursday on the resumption of passenger transport services, as well as the protocols that will be carried out during the current phase of the economic reopening from the coronavirus pandemic emergency. The resumption of services will be conducted exclusively during the hours allowed by the curfew. “As Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced has established, the reopening of the economy is being carried out gradually and conscientiously, harmonizing economic interests with public health,” said NTSP President Luis D. García Fraga. “The resumption of passenger transport services will follow the same principles while ensuring the safety of both operators and passengers.”
The official also stressed that “it will be the responsibility of the operators to guarantee health, safety and hygiene aspects, establishing the necessary controls to achieve social distancing and avoid the spread of COVID-19.” Passenger transport companies include taxi companies, drivers for transport network companies, party buses, tourist excursions, tourist limousines, public vehicles, carpool vehicles, public buses, as well as any other means that the NTSP has authorized for passenger transportation. Among the measures, operators should wear gloves during passenger transport, have gel alcohol available for passenger use at the entrance to the vehicle, and disinfect the unit every time a trip is finished or the vehicle is turned off. In addition, any suitcase or equipment that enters the vehicle must be disinfected if the operator moves or stores the objects. Both operators and passengers must wear masks at all times. Passengers must maintain the greatest possible distance from the driver. As part of the recommendations, it is suggested that the driver be isolated, with safety equipment, face mask or face shield that protects him from direct contact with passengers. For vehicles of intermediate capacity or greater, the occupancy of the vehicle may not be greater than 50 percent; the driver may assign seats in the unit to meet the recommended physical clearance. In addition, for these vehicles, it will be man-
datory to take the temperature of all passengers with a digital thermometer. Anyone with a result equal to or greater than 100.4°F (38°C) will not be able to board the vehicle. This measure is recommended, although not mandatory, for vehicles with a smaller capacity. García Fraga clarified that taxi and public vehicle operators interested in transporting cargo must have the special authorization issued by the NTSP on the digital platform.
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The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Trump can’t shut down DACA, Supreme Court rules By ADAM LIPTAK and MICHAEL D. SHEAR
he Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the Trump administration may not immediately proceed with its plan to end a program protecting about 700,000 young immigrants known as Dreamers from deportation. The court’s ruling was a blow to one of President Donald Trump’s central campaign promises — that as president he would “immediately terminate” an executive order by former President Barack Obama that Trump had called an illegal executive amnesty for hundreds of thousands of young immigrants. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion, joined by the court’s four more liberal members in upholding the program, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. “We do not decide whether DACA or its rescission are sound policies,” the chief justice wrote. “We address only whether the agency complied with the procedural requirement that it provide a reasoned explanation for its action.” After contentious debates among his aides, Trump announced in September 2017 that he would wind down the program. He gave only a single reason for doing so, saying that creating or maintaining the program was beyond the legal power of any president. But the justifications the government gave, Roberts wrote, were insufficient. He said the administration may try again to provide adequate reasons for shutting down the program. The decision was the second this week in which the court reached a result in a major case that elated liberals. On Monday, the court ruled that gay and transgender workers were protected
Supporters of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program demonstrate outside the Supreme Court in Washington. by a landmark civil rights law. Roberts was in the majority in that decision, too. In a dissent, Justice Clarence Thomas, joined by Justices Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch, said the majority had been swayed by sympathy and politics. “Today’s decision must be recognized for what it is: an effort to avoid a politically controversial but legally correct decision,” Thomas wrote. “The court could have made clear that the solution respondents seek must come from the legislative branch.” “In doing so,” he wrote, “it has given the green light for future political battles to be fought in this court rather than where they rightfully
belong — the political branches.” President Donald Trump immediately attacked the ruling on Twitter: “These horrible & politically charged decisions coming out of the Supreme Court are shotgun blasts into the face of people that are proud to call themselves Republicans or Conservatives. We need more Justices or we will lose our 2nd. Amendment & everything else. Vote Trump 2020!” The program was announced by Obama in 2012. It allows young people brought to the United States as children to apply for a temporary status that shields them from deportation and allows them to work. The status lasts for two years and is renewable, but it does not provide
a path to citizenship. The court’s ruling means the Trump administration officials will have to provide a lower court with a more robust justification for ending the program. That process is likely to take many months, putting the administration’s assault on the program in limbo until after the November election. It will also put on hold any plans to round up more than 700,000 young immigrants — many of whom have been living in the United States since they were small children — and deport them to foreign countries they may not even remember. In the past,Trump has praised the program’s goals and suggested he wanted to preserve it. “Does anybody really want to throw out good, educated and accomplished young people who have jobs, some serving in the military?” he asked in a 2017 Twitter post. But Trump sometimes struck a different tone. “Many of the people in DACA, no longer very young, are far from ‘angels,’” he wrote on Twitter last year as the Supreme Court prepared to hear arguments in the case. “Some are very tough, hardened criminals.” In fact, the program has strict requirements. To be eligible, applicants had to show that they had committed no serious crimes, had arrived in the United States before they turned 16 and were no older than 30, had lived in the United States for at least the previous five years, and were in school, had graduated from high school or received a GED certificate, or were an honorably discharged veteran. “I do not favor punishing children,” Trump said in his formal announcement of the termination. But, he added, “the program is unlawful and unconstitutional and cannot be successfully defended in court.”
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Joe Biden begins first general election TV ad blitz By SHANE GOLDMACHER
ormer Vice President Joe Biden is making his first television ad buy of the general election, a $15 million television, digital, radio and print advertising blitz starting Friday for five weeks across six fall battlegrounds — all states that President Donald Trump carried in 2016. The ads, which will air in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Florida, Arizona and North Carolina, as well as on national cable, are evidence of Biden’s improved financial position after he raised $80.8 million in May, as well as a forceful early effort to lock in and expand the consistent lead he has established in national polls over Trump. Trump began advertising earlier this spring, spending nearly $22.7 million through Monday, according to data from Advertising Analytics, a media-tracking firm, including millions of dollars of at-
tacks on Biden. Despite the Trump campaign’s early hopes that it could expand the Electoral College map from 2016, the president has so far advertised in the same six states where Biden is going up with ads, along with Iowa and Ohio, two states that Trump won more comfortably in 2016 and that were not initially expected to be crucial 2020 swing states. “We’re playing offense,” Patrick Bonsignore, Biden’s director of paid media, wrote in a memo outlining the buy, which also includes $1 million in Spanish-language ads in Florida and Arizona. The campaign is also “making a mid-six-figure investment in African American print, radio, and targeted digital programming” in the six states, according to the memo. For its opening English-language television ads, the Biden campaign is using portions of the former vice president’s speech this month in Philadelphia after
the killing of George Floyd to narrate two different 60-second spots. “The country is crying out for leadership,” Biden says in one of the ads. “Leadership that can unite us. Leadership that brings us together. That’s what the presidency is. The duty to care.” That spot does not mention Trump by name but does include images of the president’s recent Bible-holding photo op near the White House — made possible after riot officers cleared peaceful protesters by force — as Biden vows to “heal the racial wounds of our country that have long plagued our country, not use them for political gain.” Interspersed are images of recent protests against racial injustice and of federal security officers standing guard in helmets and fatigues outside the Lincoln Memorial. The second ad, which neither mentions nor shows any images of Trump, centers on what Biden calls the “great American middle class” and the people
Former Vice President Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, speaks in Darby, Pa.
who have been newly deemed “essential workers” during the coronavirus pandemic. “We need to do more than praise them,” he says in the ad. “We need to pay them.” “This job is not about me,” Biden says of the presidency at the end of the ad. “It’s about you. It’s about us.” In his memo, Bonsignore said the campaign would be buying ads on daytime Fox News programs and during NASCAR races in a concerted effort to target “a large volume of Obama/Trump voters.” In Florida, he said the campaign would be advertising in Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville but also focusing on a “strong presence” in the Panhandle region “to get in front of white working-class voters who moved from Obama in ’12 to Trump in ’16 as well as open a conversation with the African American voters.” The Biden campaign also emphasized its efforts to target Latino voters, saying it believed its Spanish-language ads were the earliest to be aired ever by a non-incumbent candidate for president. The Spanish-language ad employs a play on words and was recorded with three different narrators for different regions: someone of Mexican descent for the Phoenix market, Cuban descent for Miami and Puerto Rican descent for Orlando. Both the English and Spanishlanguage ads will be supplemented with digital ads on platforms like Hulu, YouTube and Facebook. Biden’s paid media program will begin on Juneteenth, a holiday that commemorates the end of slavery. Trump had been scheduled to host his first campaign rally since the coronavirus pandemic hit the country in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on Friday, but he pushed the event back a day after he was fiercely criticized for scheduling it on that day in Tulsa, the site of the destruction of its “Black Wall Street” nearly 100 years ago. The Biden memo said the campaign was buying print ads in more than 30 African American newspapers in battleground states, including The Grand Rapids Times and The Pittsburgh Courier. A set of digital ads specifically commemorating Juneteenth will run through the weekend in North Carolina and Florida.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
The pandemic isn’t over. New Yorkers are acting as if it were. By MICHAEL WILSON
hree sisters from three different boroughs shared the same bench on the Coney Island boardwalk and toasted with cups of beer — together again at last. Teenagers with baseball gloves and a bat sneaked through a hole in a fence at a closed-off diamond. A manager at a Brooklyn clothing store insisted to a reporter that no, they’re not open, since that’s not allowed, even as customers browsed inside. Officially, New York City is still in Phase 1 of the long reopening process, a land of curbside pickups and closed playgrounds and takeout cocktails that aren’t supposed to be consumed in public. On Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city would enter the second phase next Monday. But anyone stepping outside or taking a glance at social media has noticed a population already so far along on the journey to normalcy that they could be living in a different place. New Yorkers who once ducked for cover at the sound of a cough a block away are stretching both their comfort levels and the rules, venturing out to lay claim to the parts of their lives they haven’t known since March. And they are met by bars and businesses starved for income and doing their own feats of stretching — of their necks, as they look the other way as customers gather at uncomfortably close quarters. New York, the early epicenter of the coronavirus in the United States, is being observed as a barometer of recovery around the country, its slow-and-steady approach helping bring the number of daily deaths to just 19 on Tuesday from a high of 799 on April 8. But new surges of the virus in states like Florida, Arizona and Texas that reopened more quickly suggest the perils of letting down the collective guard. In that way, too, New York City has become a barometer, of a nation of pent-up souls eager for a change no matter what their governors or mayors think. It is as if the city is rebuilding itself, not with scaffolding and steel, but with cheeseburgers eaten at outside tables and fathers hoisting toddlers over the locked gates of closed playgrounds. It is a city built on festive, furtive and sometimes troubling pushing of boundaries. A lot more social, a lot less distancing. “We made it! That’s what I say,” said Alba Cuba, 66, sitting shoulder-to-shoulder, mask on hand but not on her face, at Coney Island last Friday with two of her sisters, Magnolia Garcia, 74, and Maria Velez, 86. They live spread out in Staten Island, Queens and Brooklyn, and so had followed the guidelines and quarantined separately in their own homes, until recently. Down the beach from the sisters, a Parks Department officer with a bullhorn on his truck ordered swimmers out of the water. Elsewhere, friends gathered at what has become the new watering hole, the sidewalks and streets outside bar takeout windows, and sometimes at outdoor tables
Inside and outside the social distancing circles, groups of friends have been often gathering without masks at Domino Park in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. that are supposed to be off-limits to dining until Phase 2. At the White Horse Tavern in Greenwich Village, tables and chairs have been placed outside on the sidewalk, for the patrons to have a place to sit while they wait for their takeout orders. The fact that many of them eat their meals at those tables is not the tavern’s responsibility, said its owner, Eytan Sugarman, 46. “I’m not a bouncer, I’m not a police officer, I don’t have the right to tell them what to do when they take their stuff and go,” he said. (Perhaps customers are making assumptions based on the bar’s Instagram post: “Our Patio is ... OPEN!!!!!!!”) Sugarman said he had bigger worries: “Survival,” he said. “I think the industry is facing destruction.” His is among the oldest bars in the city, “and it could close,” he said. A clothing store simply marked 1/2 Price Outlet displayed racks of apparel on the sidewalk out front — but also within the shop itself, its doors open as if beyond Phase 1. As customers went in and out, a manager insisted to a reporter it wasn’t what it seemed — “Not open, just cleaning” — and shooed away two women looking at shirts. Since the start of the lockdowns in March, the city has handed out 11,000 warnings and close to 2,000 summonses, according to Joseph Fucito, the New York City sheriff, who helps oversee enforcement. Even so, the rule-bending and breaking have become a brazenly
open secret. Among those gathering with others, there is a new logic at play, one that suggests that friends and family from different households who have been following the rules are no longer off limits. This leap of faith is the passport to places like Williamsburg, where unmasked friends have gathered under the sun at Domino and McCarren Parks and outside the bars on Berry Street, which has been closed to car traffic. “They’re people we know,” explained Chris Burnett, 35, as he and his friends sipped beer and tequila on Berry Street on a recent afternoon. “I believe that my friends wouldn’t show up sick.” His partner, Heather Sumner, 32, repeated a phrase commonly heard these days, the password for entry to these speakeasies in plain sight: “We can’t stay inside forever.” It’s a phrase that Angela Rasmussen, a virologist at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, hears often from friends who ask if it’s safe to meet up outside, or to invite others for a meal. “A lot of this is about trying to manage risks that we can’t really quantify,” she said. “The odds of you being exposed to someone with coronavirus has certainly gone down in New York. At the same time, coronavirus has not been eradicated from New York. There still is community transmission occurring.”
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Jean Kennedy dies at 92; Sister of famed clan helped forge peace in Northern Ireland By ROBERT D. McFADDEN
ean Kennedy Smith, a sister of the Kennedy clan who as the U.S. ambassador to Ireland in the 1990s helped pave the way for a formal agreement to end decades of sectarian violence in Northern Ireland, died Wednesday at her home in Manhattan. She was 92. Her death was confirmed by her daughter Kym. Smith was the youngest and last-surviving sibling in a family that embedded itself in the American consciousness and wrote itself into American history, producing a president and senators and an unrivaled mystique fashioned out of political glory, personal charisma, great wealth and staggering tragedy. Until the age when most people retire, Smith led a quiet life of privilege and philanthropy, with palatial homes, summers at the shore and a busy calendar of society and charity functions. She shared family triumphs and tragedies, though always in the shadow of her siblings, including President John F. Kennedy, Sens. Robert F. Kennedy and Ted Kennedy, Eunice Shriver and Patricia Kennedy Lawford. But in 1993, when she was 65, a doyenne of charity balls and the widow of Stephen E. Smith, the Kennedy family’s troubleshooter and financial adviser, Smith was named ambassador to Dublin by President Bill Clinton at the behest of her brother Teddy. But he had no illusions about her appointment. Neither did her social circle. “When Jean was posted to Ireland, people thought, ‘Oh, gosh,’” said Muffie Brandon, a Washington socialite. Smith was the first Kennedy woman of her generation to take on a serious political job. Like her sisters and the wives of her brothers, she had had roles in family political campaigns, but not in public service. Her father, Joseph P. Kennedy Sr., had been the ambassador to Britain when she was a little girl, and she had visited Ireland, the land of her ancestors, many times. But she knew little about diplomacy, Irish politics or the intricacies of the sectarian violence known as The Troubles: the Irish Republican Army’s campaign of bombings and assassinations to drive the British out of Ulster and unite overwhelmingly Roman Catholic Ireland with predominantly Protestant Northern Ireland. The appointment, too, was made at a crucial time, as movement had begun toward a settlement to end decades of fighting that had left thousands dead on all sides. Still, the Irish, who regarded President Kennedy as a virtual saint, took to her warmly, and Irish leaders were eager to help. She soon became the second-most-prominent woman in Ireland, after President Mary Robinson. And over the next five years, in the unorthodox way that amateurs sometimes succeed, Smith embraced her job and played a role in the Ulster settlement. She ruffled feathers, broke rules and brushed aside diplomatic niceties. She was reprimanded by Secretary of State Warren M. Christopher for removing two senior staff members who disagreed with her views. She visited Northern Ireland, a British province and not her turf, and met repeatedly with Gerry Adams, the head of the IRA’s political wing, Sinn Fein, although U.S. policy then forbade it. While many officials in London and the U.S. State Department believed she was exceeding her authority and regarded Adams as a terrorist mouthpiece, Smith helped clear the way for
a visa that let him go to the United States to make his case for a cease-fire and British withdrawal from Ulster. Almost overnight, he became a popular son of Ireland in America. Six months later, on Aug. 31, 1994, a cease-fire was declared. At the behest of Smith, Ted Kennedy and others, Clinton met with Adams at the White House in 1995, granting a measure of respectability to Sinn Fein. When the cease-fire broke down in 1996 over the continued exclusion of Sinn Fein from the peace talks, Smith summoned Joe Cahill, the IRA leader, and upbraided him. Sinn Fein was finally admitted to the talks, and the cease-fire was restored in 1997. Negotiations led by former Sen. George J. Mitchell produced the Belfast Agreement in April 1998. It provided for disarming paramilitary groups and powersharing in Northern Ireland. A month later, it was approved in referendums in Ireland and Northern Ireland. The years afterward were marred by gunfights, political breakdowns, disarmament disputes and other flare-ups. But the Belfast pact is still regarded as the formal document for phasing out decades of sectarian warfare in Ulster. Smith’s role — bringing the IRA in from the cold — was important, and she was proud of it. “The Irish people were willing to take me at face value, to give me the benefit of the doubt because I was a Kennedy,” she said in 1998 as she prepared to end her assignment in Dublin. “I was a cog, really, in the machine that was moving. I was fortunate to be here to perhaps add momentum to what was happening.” Jean Ann Kennedy was born in Brookline, Massachusetts, on Feb. 20, 1928, the eighth of nine children and the youngest
daughter of Joseph P. and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy. Her childhood was idyllic, with summers on Cape Cod, winters in Palm Beach, Florida, and mansion life in Bronxville, an affluent suburb in Westchester County, New York. She was educated at Roman Catholic girls’ schools and graduated in 1948 from Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart in New York with a degree in English. She introduced future wives to three of her brothers — Ethel Skakel, a Manhattanville classmate, to Robert; Jacqueline Bouvier, a friend, to John; and Virginia Joan Bennett, also a Manhattanville student, to Edward. She married Stephen Smith, a New York financier, in 1956. He oversaw the Kennedy family’s $500 million fortune after her father was incapacitated by a stroke in 1961, and he advised her brothers in political campaigns. The couple had four children. In outliving her siblings, Smith endured their often-shattering deaths. Her oldest brother, Joseph P. Kennedy Jr., was killed in combat in 1944. (She christened a destroyer named for him in 1945.) Kathleen died in a 1948 plane crash in France. President Kennedy and Sen. Robert Kennedy were assassinated in 1963 and 1968. Rosemary, mentally disabled and institutionalized most of her life, died in 2005; Patricia Kennedy Lawford, who was divorced from the British actor Peter Lawford, died in 2006; Eunice Kennedy Shriver, a champion of the Special Olympics and the wife of R. Sargent Shriver, the first director of the Peace Corps, died in August 2009; and Ted Kennedy died two weeks later. Smith’s husband died in 1990. In addition to her daughter Kym, she is survived by her two sons, Stephen Jr. and William; another daughter, Amanda; and six grandchildren.
Jean Kennedy Smith, third from right, with family members at the funeral of Sen. Edward Kennedy in Boston
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
After Aunt Jemima, Uncle Ben and Mrs. Butterworth feel the heat By MARIA CRAMER
ithin hours of the announcement that Aunt Jemima was being retired from store shelves, at least three more food companies rushed to respond to complaints about other brands that have been criticized for using racial stereotypes. Mars Food, the owner of the brand Uncle Ben’s rice, which features an older black man smiling on the box, said Wednesday that it would “evolve” the brand as protests over racism and police brutality across the country continue. “We recognize that now is the right time to evolve the Uncle Ben’s brand, including its visual brand identity, which we will do,” said Caroline Sherman, a spokeswoman for Mars. The company does not know the nature of the changes or the timing, she said, “but we are evaluating all possibilities.” Shortly after that announcement, ConAgra Brands, the maker of Mrs. Butterworth’s pancake syrup, released a statement saying the company had begun a “complete brand and package review.” Critics have long associated the shape of the Mrs. Butterworth’s bottle with the mammy, a caricature of black women as subservient to white people. And later on Wednesday, the parent company of Cream of Wheat announced that it was conducting a similar review of the chef character that has appeared on its packaging. The recent widespread protests have renewed the focus on food manufacturers who for decades have used racial images to sell rice, porridge mix, dairy products and snacks, among other products and services. The companies have fielded complaints about these depictions before, and they have sometimes made adjustments. In 2007, Uncle Ben, whose face has appeared on the box of rice since the 1940s, was promoted from a servant to chairman of the board. But Kevin Thomas, a professor of multicultural branding in the Race, Ethnic and Indigenous Studies Program at Marquette University, said he hoped the current push for change would finally lead
Uncle Ben, whose face has appeared on the box of rice since the 1940s, was promoted in 2007 from a servant to chairman of the board. Now, the brand will “evolve” further, a spokeswoman said. to a substantial overhaul in the marketing world. “I’m hoping this is a reckoning and we’re going to start seeing something that becomes pervasive,” Thomas said. What other troubling brands remain? Quite a few, according to marketing observers. The image on a box of Cream of Wheat, a beaming black man in a white chef’s uniform, has not been altered much since its debut in the late 19th century. The character was named “Rastus,” a pejorative term for black men, and he was depicted as a barely literate cook who did not know what vitamins were. The brand is owned by B&G Foods Inc., which said on Wednesday night that it had immediately begun a review of its packaging. “We understand there are concerns regarding the chef image, and we are committed to evaluating our packaging and will proactively take steps to ensure that we and our brands do not inadvertently contribute to systemic racism,” the company said in a statement. For decades, many have expressed concerns about the matronly shape of the Mrs. Butterworth’s container. “I think the key issue with Mrs. But-
terworth is her physical shape, which strongly resembles the mammy caricature,” Thomas said. “So while she’s been personified as an elderly white woman, mainly through vocal affect, her physique and style of dress bear a striking resemblance to that of the mammy.” In its statement, ConAgra Brands said Mrs. Butterworth was “intended to evoke the images of a loving grandmother.” But the company said it wanted to stand in solidarity with “our black and brown communities, and we can see that our packaging may be interpreted in a way that is wholly inconsistent with our values.” The images of placid, smiling African Americans on commercial products were often created during times of racial upheaval, Thomas said. Characters like Aunt Jemima, who was first depicted as a mammy, followed Reconstruction, when white people were scared of what it meant to live alongside newly freed slaves, he said. “There was a lot of angst around that. There was terror and a sense of, what does this mean for white supremacy?” he said. Thomas suggested that the advertisers were trying to market products around those fears: “Can we assuage some of that
to get back to those quote-unquote calmer days when we had the slave in the kitchen taking care of our kids?” Another intent of stereotypes in marketing is to make some goods seem more exotic, experts say. This is not only a phenomenon in the United States. In 2009, a young Inuit woman publicly denounced Pascall, a candy manufacturer in Australia and New Zealand, for appropriating her culture to sell its “Eskimo” marshmallows and other sweets. The company refused to change the name. Have companies dropped or modified brands in the past? Indeed. The Native American woman who once adorned packages of Land O’Lakes cheese and butter was removed this year. Beth Ford, the Land O’Lakes chief executive, said in February that it was time the company recognize the need for “packaging that reflects the foundation and heart of our company culture.” In 1967, Frito-Lay introduced the “Frito Bandito,” a gun-toting Mexican who spoke with a thick accent and threatened to steal chips from kids. Mexican American advocacy groups denounced the character and demanded the company stop using it to sell chips. Frito responded by making the Frito Bandito less unkempt. His beard was shaved, and his gold tooth was removed, but the character did not fully disappear until around 1971. In the 1950s, the Sambo’s chain began opening pancake restaurants by the hundreds across the United States. The founders, Sam Battistone Sr. and Newell Bohnett, said the restaurant’s name was based on the first letters of their names. But the name was long reviled as racist, and in many towns the restaurant rebranded itself as “The Jolly Tiger” under local pressure. Last week, the last Sambo’s in the United States, located in Santa Barbara, California, where the chain started, decided to finally change the name. For now, workers have covered the sign outside with a peace symbol, an ampersand and the word “love.” Customers had circulated a petition this month seeking the change, and the owners agreed it was time.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
S&P 500 closes nominally higher amid COVID-19 spikes, muted data
he S&P 500 closed nominally higher on Thursday as investors weighed a resurgence in coronavirus infections and the possibility of a new round of shutdowns as well as data that suggested the U.S. economy might not bounce back with quick, V-shaped recovery. All three major U.S. stock indexes were range-bound and oscillated through much of the day, but the S&P ended the session in the black along with the tech-heavy Nasdaq. The blue-chip Dow lost ground. “The market’s looking for its next big impulse,” said Chuck Carlson, chief executive officer at Horizon Investment Services in Hammond, Indiana. “There are a lot of impulses in the market for investors to weigh, sift through and take into account to figure out the next direction.” While several U.S. states have reported surges in new COVID-19 cases after re-opening their economies, President Donald Trump insisted the United States would not enact a new round of restrictions to curb the pandemic’s spread. “Investors are in wait-and-see mode,” said Charlie Ripley, senior market strategist for Allianz Investment Management in Minneapolis. “The consensus is we’re on the road to the recovery, but there could be bumps along the way and these increasing virus numbers could be one of those bumps,” Ripley added. Initial jobless claims declined slightly last week to a stillbruising 1.51 million, according to the Labor Department. The number was worse than consensus, and continuing claims remain stubbornly high at 20.54 million, suggesting the labor market has a long road to recovery. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 39.51 points, or 0.15%, to 26,080.1, the S&P 500 gained 1.85 points, or 0.06%, to 3,115.34 and the Nasdaq Composite added 32.52 points, or 0.33%, to 9,943.05. The S&P 500’s modest gains were concentrated in four of the composite’s 11 major sectors. Energy shares enjoyed the largest percentage gain, while real estate was the clear laggard. Grocery chain Kroger Co beat quarterly earnings estimates and said it expects to exceed its 2020 same-store sales outlook. But the company did not reaffirm or provide new 2020 forecasts, and its shares fell 3.0%. Shares of Spotify Technology SA jumped 12.7% after the music streaming company inked a deal with AT&T Inc’s Warner Brothers and DC Entertainment to add popular DC Comics character podcasts to its library. Cruise operator Carnival Corp fell 1.4% after reporting a record $4.4 billion quarterly loss after pandemic-related write-downs. Biogen Inc dropped 7.5% after a U.S. district court ruled in favor of generic drugmaker Mylan NV in a patent dispute. Mylan NV rose 2.3%. Industrial services provider Team Inc plunged 16.9% after missing quarterly earnings estimates amid falling demand. Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 1.39-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.02-to-1 ratio favored decliners.
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The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Coronavirus fears in China find a new target: salmon By AMY QIN
hen a new coronavirus outbreak emerged last week in Beijing, residents were jolted by reports that traces of the virus had been found on a cutting board used for imported salmon, and the backlash was swift. Within a few days, salmon was removed from major supermarket shelves in Beijing, reserves of the fish were dumped and bulk orders evaporated. Diners rushed to cancel reservations at Japanese restaurants in the capital, while salmon suppliers around the world scrambled to salvage the tarnished reputation of their prized product in the country. Chinese officials later said that imported salmon was not responsible for spreading the virus, but the damage had already been done. “The unluckiest restaurateur of 2020,” said Alan Wong, owner of Hatsune, a chain of Japanese restaurants in Beijing and Shanghai. “That’s my title.” “We were packed on Friday and now dead ever since,” he said. “Totally empty.” In a country where fears of the virus remain strong and nationalism is on the rise, imported salmon has found itself an easy target. Facing global criticism for its initial mishandling of the virus, Chinese authorities have for months waged a propaganda campaign to highlight their successes in taming the virus and deflect blame for the pandemic to outsiders. They have cast foreigners as public health risks, sowed doubt about the origins of the virus and even pushed an unfounded conspiracy theory that the U.S. military had deliberately brought the virus to China. After the chairman of the wholesale market linked to the latest outbreak told a Beijing News reporter that the virus had been found on a cutting board used for salmon, panic ensued. On Saturday, Zeng Guang, a senior epidemiologist at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, was quoted in the Global Times, a party-controlled nationalist newspaper, urging the public to temporarily stay away from raw salmon. For years, China’s growing appetite for salmon, like American lobsters, oysters and cherries, had been celebrated as a sign of the country’s rising living standards and
Norwegian salmon accounted for 45 percent of the market in China in 2019, according to the Norwegian Seafood Council. burgeoning middle class. Now, the luxury good, which is mostly imported from Norway and Chile, is being cast out. For the many salmon suppliers and restaurateurs who were already struggling to claw their way back in the aftermath of the pandemic, the sudden boycott in China has dealt an unexpected blow. Like many other restaurant owners in China, Wong of Hatsune was forced to close several of his 15 restaurants after the epidemic exploded in the country in late January. The remaining restaurants were beginning to return to pre-pandemic levels of business earlier this month. Then reports began circulating last Friday about the contaminated cutting board, and the customers stopped coming. Halfway around the world, the reports also delivered a seismic shock. Regin Jacobsen, chief executive of Bakkafrost, a salmon farming company based in the Faroe Islands, said that calls from China to cancel orders began coming in over the weekend and soon they “practically went from 100% down to zero.” Over the last decade, Jacobsen said, the market for salmon in China had grown with the increase in Japanese restaurants and the expansion of a Chinese middle
class interested in reaping salmon’s health benefits. Up to 20% of Bakkafrost’s fresh salmon exports, he said, went to China every year. After seeing the mounting cancellations, Bakkafrost rushed to respond, putting out a statement emphasizing that there had been no new cases of the coronavirus in the Faroe Islands since April and that the company’s employees had been regularly tested for the coronavirus. Anders Snellingen, manager of global operations for the Norwegian Seafood Council, an industry group, said that Norway’s seafood companies had also seen a rapid uptick in cancellations for salmon orders from China over the weekend and that several shipments of salmon had been destroyed or returned. Last year, Norwegian salmon accounted for 45% of the market in China, according to the Norwegian Seafood Council. The total value of the country’s salmon exports to China last year reached $167 million and was growing, Snellingen said. The new outbreak, which has so far sickened more than 130 people in Beijing and forced the closure of workplaces, restaurants and hotels in high-risk areas of the city, comes at a delicate time for China’s
leader Xi Jinping. Official data released this week showed that authorities are still struggling to rev up the country’s economy. Abroad, the ruling Communist Party faces a growing international backlash for its initial attempts to downplay the epidemic. “Given all of the effort they put into protecting Beijing, the fact that they let the virus slip through their formidable capital defenses is a bit of a blow to the Communist Party,” said Drew Thompson, director for China in the Pentagon from 2011 to 2018 and now a research fellow at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy in Singapore. “Blaming this on foreign forces that got through their screen is a palatable option for them,” he added, calling the backlash against salmon a form of “xenopescophobia, the fear of foreign fish.” In Beijing, concerns have spread beyond salmon. One vendor at Jingshen market, which processes much of the city’s seafood, said in a telephone interview that he had seen sales of all seafood drop by 80% since Friday, though he was optimistic that demand would eventually rebound. In the last few days, state media and health officials have started to walk back their earlier statements about salmon. At a news briefing on Tuesday, Shi Guoqing, an official from the Chinese Center for Disease Control said that there was no evidence to suggest that salmon could host the new coronavirus. Officials, however, have not ruled out the possibility that the seafood products could have been contaminated during the packaging process. Norwegian officials said on Wednesday that together with Chinese authorities, they had concluded that salmon from Norway was not the source of the coronavirus found on cutting boards at the Beijing market. “We can clear away uncertainty,” Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen, Norway’s fisheries and seafood minister, said during a video conference. Despite the official reassurances, many Chinese diners were still hesitant. Alyssa Mai, 19, a college student from Guangzhou, said that while she knew the risk of getting the virus from eating salmon was low, she would not have it any time soon. “My relatives would be worried,” she said.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Beijing’s partial lockdown a sign of the world’s new normal
At Beijing’s international airport on Wednesday. Roughly 60 percent of departures were canceled. By CHRIS BUCKLEY and KEITH BRADSHER
he Chinese economy had been firing back up. Travelers had been returning to fill trains and planes. Communist Party leaders had been celebrating their success in defeating the coronavirus. For 56 days, Beijing had not registered any new locally acquired cases — until last week. Now, China’s capital has suffered a flareup of infections, delivering a painful lesson that the virus can come back to ambush countries that had triumphantly proclaimed victory. After a fresh outbreak of coronavirus infections, the city of Beijing, with a population of more than 21 million, has begun reimposing some controls used across the country earlier in the year to stifle the first wave of infections. Airlines have canceled hundreds of flights. Schools have called off classes, forcing students to exchange abrupt farewells. Officials sealed off neighborhoods, and residents stuck inside complained about limited food deliveries. Medical workers tested tens of thousands of residents. “If you just look at the numbers of cases they are still relatively small,” said Yanzhong Huang, an expert on China’s health care at the Council on Foreign Relations who has closely followed China’s epidemic. “I’ve said that this kind of outbreak would be the new normal for many months to come,” he said in a telephone interview. “But this is in Beijing, the political and economic center, and so it has this symbolic meaning.”
China is not the only country that has been given a sobering lesson in the persistence and wiliness of the coronavirus. Singapore appeared early this year to have contained the scourge, only for the virus to start racing through dormitories packed with migrant workers, causing hundreds of infections per day. South Korea had early success in limiting the virus despite avoiding stringent lockdowns, only to find in the past two weeks that infections spread again when public compliance with social distancing eroded. In New Zealand, two cases in recent arrivals from Britain were confirmed on Tuesday, only days after the government had declared the country’s epidemic eradicated. In the United States, three states that had moved aggressively to open up their economies — Arizona, Florida and Texas — all reported their largest one-day increases in cases on Tuesday. For Beijing residents, the outbreak is a reminder that even in China — with its arsenal of high-tech surveillance tools and other authoritarian powers — the virus that causes COVID-19 can reinvade everyday life, triggering new and disruptive restrictions. Some in Beijing worry that the hardships they so recently overcame this spring may return this summer. “I feel that the epidemic situation is too worrisome now, I am afraid that it will become even worse later on,” said Bao Gengxin, a 19-year-old high school senior, as he waited for a train to flee Beijing on Wednesday. China’s new outbreak has largely been
limited to Beijing, and mostly to the vast Xinfadi wholesale produce market in the city’s south. Even so, the burst of infections has created wider jitters, because orderly control of the Chinese capital is a priority for Communist Party rulers. So far the scale of infections in Beijing is far from reaching the levels that gripped Wuhan, the central Chinese city where the virus first emerged late last year. The Beijing government said on Thursday that the number of coronavirus cases in the recent outbreak had risen to 158, after an additional 21 cases were reported that day. Most Beijing streets flowed with traffic on Wednesday, though less than usual, and the public mood appeared resigned rather than panicked. Restaurants still opened, though the government has ordered them to disinfect and check employees. But hundreds of flights to and from Beijing, roughly 60 percent of departures, were canceled. Fear both of infections and of quarantines prompted many passengers to stay put. Zhao Gang, a businessman and aviation writer, said the cancellations illustrated how longlaid plans — like studying abroad — could be upended from restrictions triggered by a resurgence of the coronavirus. “Maybe you’re all set to go, but before departure some sudden incident indefinitely delays the flight. What can you do?” he said in a video comment online. “These flip-flopping hassles.” At the Beijing South Railway Station, the cavernous departure hall was mostly empty Wednesday afternoon as the authorities ordered that only people who tested negative for the coronavirus could leave the city. Some of the station’s fast-food restaurants and other eateries were closed. Yet the digital departure screens showing the next 66 bullet trains indicated that not one had been canceled. Some travelers waiting in the hall were determined to leave before any further restrictions took effect. “I’m worried that the city might be sealed off,” said Shi Ming, a 22-year-old student who had bought a train ticket to return to his hometown in Shandong province, eastern China. “Last night was very tense, so I rushed to snap up a ticket.” The flurry of new controls in Beijing came less than two weeks after the city government had lowered its emergency footing, seemingly confident that life could return to normal. But Gao Fu, the director of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, suggested that the virus might have been in circulation for a month among vendors and workers at the Xinfadi market before cases were first re-
ported in recent days. In a meeting of officials in Shanghai on Tuesday, Gao explained that many of the latest cases were asymptomatic or mild infections, allowing the virus to spread undetected in the environment, according to Caixin, a Chinese magazine. Across Beijing, most residents seemed reconciled to the prospect of weeks under newly tightened restrictions, after the government upgraded the health emergency to the secondhighest level on Tuesday. State-run media outlets have repeatedly contrasted China’s aggressive campaign against the virus with the lapses of the United States, Britain and other Western countries where infections have surged. The heaviest controls in the Chinese capital have fallen on neighborhoods around the Xinfadi market and two smaller markets where health investigators believe the coronavirus spread among vendors and workers, and then onto others. Nearly all the cases have been traced back to people at Xinfadi, or people who had close contact with them, and the chain of infections has spilled into other parts of China. Beijing has already thrown considerable resources into stifling the outbreak. In recent days, city authorities have carried out nucleic acid tests for the virus among 356,000 people linked to the closed markets or living near them, city officials told a news conference on Wednesday. Still, Pang Xinghuo, a deputy director of the Beijing Center for Disease Control, warned that the number of infections spreading from the Xinfadi market could still grow, given the size of the market and the reach of its traders across the city. “The risks of the outbreak spreading are large and control is quite difficult,” she said. While most neighborhoods in Beijing have reinstated temperature checks and restrictions on visitors, nearly 30 neighborhoods near the suspect markets have gone into strict lockdown, banning residents from going outside, even for groceries. The government imposed similar controls across Wuhan to stifle the epidemic earlier this year, and in both cities the controls ignited frustration. “The neighborhood has imposed fully sealed-off management and nobody knows what to do,” said one message on Weibo, a Chinese social media service, which said residents in one locked-down block in Beijing had difficulties buying food. “Adults can get by, but what about children and old people?” said the comment, which was widely shared. “Couriers can’t get close, and friends and relatives outside can’t send in assistance either.”
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Anger surges in India over deadly border brawl with China By JEFFREY GETTLEMAN
n Indian government minister has called for Chinese restaurants to be closed. Other Indian officials have suddenly put contracts to Chinese companies under review. And crowds of men are now smashing Chinese-made televisions in the street. A wave of anti-Chinese anger is cresting across India as the nation struggles to absorb the loss of 20 Indian soldiers beaten to death this week by Chinese troops in a high-altitude brawl along India’s disputed border with China. “We should bleed China with a thousand cuts,” said Ranjit Singh, a retired army major who is calling for a boycott of Chinese goods. “We need to hit them where it hurts most, and that is economically.” And the tensions are hardly easing. Sonam Joldan, a teacher in the Ladakh region near the India-China border, reported on Thursday seeing a line of 100 Indian Army trucks heading toward the front line, wending its way up the Himalayan mountains “like a caravan of ants.” How did he feel watching the forces go by? “Patriotic, of course,” Joldan said. “India can’t watch the Chinese aggression go on forever. They have to be stopped at some point.” The killing of the Indian soldiers, he said, was unforgivable. Indian and Chinese generals continued to meet on Thursday to discuss de-escalation at the border high up in the Himalayas where the brawl erupted, officials said. But Paying tribute on Thursday to Sunil Kumar, an Indian soldier who was killed in a border clash with Chinese military analysts and satellite imagery indicated that Chinese troops this week. troops had yet to pull back. By some accounts, in recent weeks they have taken about 23 square miles of territory claimed by India and deadlier events. preparing to cancel a huge railway contract that had been show no signs of leaving. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has tried to walk a fine given to a Chinese company. Western intelligence officials said that India would line. Although he seems reluctant to escalate a major conflict That may be just the beginning. not accept this and that the chances of more fighting re- with China — which has a mightier military — much of his Protests have broken out across India to boycott mained high, especially with thousands of opposing troops political brand has been tied up in projecting an image of Chinese goods, a move that will not be easy. The phones eyeball-to-eyeball along a remote front line that has erupted a forceful, increasingly powerful India, and he has signaled in most Indians’ hands are made in China, as are countless in violence several times, including a major war between that he will not back down. other products. India-China trade has grown enormously, India and China in 1962. “India wants peace,” he said in a televised address from $3 billion in 2000 to more than $95 billion in 2018, Troops from both sides have been instructed not to use on Wednesday. “But if provoked, India is capable of giving the Indian Express reported. And as of last year, a trade firearms during faceoffs along the border, but that did not a befitting reply.” deficit between the two nations had reached nearly $60 stop a vicious hand-to-hand battle from raging for several Whenever he has been in a pinch, Modi has been billion in China’s favor. hours Monday night. One Indian military analyst posted a able to count on a wave of Indian nationalism. Such sentiModi can count on a friendly media landscape, espepicture on Twitter of steel clubs studded with nails that he ment helped in the early stage of the coronavirus pandemic cially when it comes to national security issues. said had been used by the Chinese troops. when he asked India’s entire population of 1.3 billion to Last week, before the deadly clash, Indian media outlets On Thursday, several of the Indian soldiers killed were stay indoors and many diligently obeyed. carried articles saying that all was well on the Himalayan given last rites, including Col. Bikkumalla Santosh Babu, And last year, when Indian paramilitary forces were border, which was what the Indian generals had been whose body was driven through the streets of Suryapet, in attacked in a suicide bombing linked to a terrorist group in telling them. Now, Indian outlets are running instructions central India, in an army truck draped with marigolds. As Pakistan, Modi ordered airstrikes on Pakistan. The brink- on how to remove Chinese-made apps like TikTok from the cortege passed, people stood on their balconies, stiff manship set off a jolt of jingoism that, a few months later, mobile phones. right hands to their temples in a final salute. “We can break China’s backbone economically,” Singh, helped propel him to a crushing reelection victory. Some officers in India’s army now want to change But he and his generals know that China’s power the retired army major, said in a recorded message he sent the rules of engagement along the border and abandon the eclipses Pakistan’s. So India’s emerging strategy to contain to residents in his neighborhood. “Shun Chinese goods. If de facto code that calls for neither side to use guns during China involves a broader mix of tactics, including economic you have any lying in your house, please throw them out.” confrontations. Military analysts worry that doing so could and diplomatic ones. “Take pictures of items thrown on the roads,” the set off an arms race that would turn the frequent faceooffs On Thursday, the Indian Express, one of the nation’s message said. “Let them become viral — let them reach and fistfights between opposing border patrols into much leading newspapers, reported that India’s government was China and tell them this is what we think of them.”
June 19-21, 2020
For Boris Johnson, a rare respite from bad news By MARK LANDLER and STEPHEN CASTLE
rime Minister Boris Johnson has always been a riverboat gambler, and as Britain emerges, blinking into the light, from a three-month lockdown, he is making one of the biggest bets of his career: that he can safely reopen a country that has been hit harder by the pandemic than any in Europe. Johnson finally caught a few breaks this week. British scientists reported success with a decades-old drug that was found to help patients with severe COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. The hugely popular Premier League restarted televised soccer games, though playing in empty stadiums. And the government’s scientific advisers are sounding more amenable to reopening pubs and restaurants July 4 and perhaps to relaxing social distancing rules, which would go a long way to restoring normalcy in British society. The prime minister even managed Wednesday to turn the tables on the Labour Party’s leader, Keir Starmer, in Parliament, where he has endured a painful weekly grilling on his haphazard response to the virus. Johnson threw Starmer off balance after challenging him to declare schools safe to reopen — something the Labour Party has refused to do, its critics say, because of pressure from angry teachers’ unions. “A great ox has stood upon his tongue,” Johnson bellowed as the usually confident Starmer groused that it was the prime minister’s job to take questions, not throw them back at the opposition. It was a rare vindication for a prime minister who has absorbed a string of shocks since Britain left the European Union in January. But his sense of victo-
Prime Minister Boris Johnson of Britain leaving 10 Downing Street in London on Wednesday. ry may have been fleeting: As Johnson’s motorcade left Parliament to return to 10 Downing St., a protester ran in front of his car, causing it to brake suddenly and be rear-ended by a security vehicle. Nobody was hurt, but the symbolism abounded. Johnson faces deeper problems than can be cured by a good session in the House of Commons, however. Britain’s emergence from lockdown has been chaotic, with a botched school reopening plan and many parents refusing to send children back to those classes that have resumed. The 14-day quarantine on those entering the country, including Britons returning home, has outraged the travel industry, raising questions about why Britain imposed it just as other European countries were lifting their restrictions. And the government’s contact-tracing operation — vital to arresting the virus’s spread and reopening the economy — is off to a bumpy start. Britain’s death toll of 42,153 from
the virus is the highest in Europe, while the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development estimated that the British economy could shrink by up to 14% in 2020, putting it alongside Italy and France as the worst-hit economies in Europe. Johnson has been forced to reverse course repeatedly on decisions, most recently on his government’s refusal to keep giving free school lunch vouchers to children of poor families during the summer. After Marcus Rashford, a star soccer player for Manchester United, led a public campaign to pressure the government, Johnson backed down in the face of a potential rebellion among members of his own Conservative Party. He raised eyebrows further by claiming he had never heard about Rashford’s campaign, even though it had received extensive media coverage. Critics of Johnson say his decisionmaking reflects a politician with no fixed ideology and little in the way of convictions. “When it comes to making decisions, he’s actually quite indecisive because he doesn’t really care one way or the other,” said Jonathan Powell, a former chief of staff to former Prime Minister Tony Blair. “Because he has no convictions, he doesn’t make decisions until the last minute, when he’s forced into it.” In short order, Johnson will have to make several difficult calls. A key one is whether to change the government’s guidelines on social distancing so that people can congregate within 1 meter (about 3 feet) of each other rather than 2 meters. That is critical to the successful reopening of pubs and restaurants, since many owners have said their businesses would not be viable with greater distances. On Tuesday, Johnson told journal-
ists to “watch this space” when he was asked about a possible reduction in social distancing space. The government’s chief scientific adviser, Patrick Vallance, hinted he might be receptive to a reduction, saying that the 2-meter rule was “not an absolute” but a “risk assessment.” To mollify the travel industry, Johnson wants to negotiate special corridors, or “air bridges,” to allow people to travel to and from low-risk destinations free of restrictions. That issue could come up during a meeting with President Emmanuel Macron of France, who is to visit London on Thursday. Johnson has grappled with a paradox: He held off imposing a lockdown in early March because he worried that people would not go along with the stayat-home restrictions. But they turned out to be remarkably compliant, and now the government is struggling to get them to return to normal life. It is a paradox of his own making, according to Peter Kellner, a polling expert. Britons are more cautious than people in other countries about reopening the economy, not because they are unwilling to leave their homes, he said, but because they lack confidence in the government’s handling of the pandemic. From a political standpoint, Kellner said, the government should not be deterred from lifting the lockdown if it can be done without a significant spike in new cases and fatalities — a major caveat, to be sure. That could prevent a big rise in unemployment in the fall as a government program to protect jobs is phased out. “If they can get the health and economic calculation right over the next few weeks,” Kellner said, “they have a chance of clawing things back, in terms of their public reputation.”
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
‘We are part of the problem they protest’ By JESSE WEGMAN
f after reading the 10th (or 50th) pledge of corporate solidarity with the anti-police brutality protests your eyes are hurting from rolling so much, you’re not alone. Nike? Check. Netflix? Check. Peloton? Check. The revolution has been focus-grouped. “Together we stand,” Amazon says, in stark white letters against a somber black background, “against systemic racism and injustice.” Great to hear. So it has been striking to read the growing stream of anguished public statements in recent days coming from another, unexpected source: chief justices at the highest state courts across the country, often joined unanimously by their colleagues. Judges are notoriously averse to saying anything in public beyond the words of their rulings. In normal times, that’s prudent; courts cannot appear to be taking sides on contested issues of public policy, especially ones they may be called to decide in the future. But these are not normal times. And the justices’ highly unusual statements exist in their own space, far from the tweetsize virtue signaling of multinational corporations. They are not trite expressions of sympathy or solidarity, nor rote reiterations of the judiciary’s commitment to equal justice under law. Some are several pages long; most grapple directly with the American legal system’s central role in perpetuating racial inequality and injustice. “We are part of the problem they protest,” Chief Justice Bernette Joshua Johnson of the Louisiana Supreme Court wrote on June 8. “I firmly believe in the rule of law. But its legitimacy is in peril when African-American citizens see evidence every day of a criminal legal system that appears to value Black lives less than it values White lives.” She continued, “Is it any wonder why many people have little faith that our legal system is designed to serve them or protect them from harm? Is it any wonder why they have taken to the streets to demand that it does?” Chief Justice Cheri Beasley of the North Carolina Supreme Court went further. “It is shocking to see our workplaces, businesses and community spaces damaged,” she said of the rioting and looting in cities like Raleigh and Charlotte. And yet “we must decry the failures of justice and equity just as forcefully as we decry violence. It is not enough to say to protesters, ‘Go home and follow the rules.’ It’s not that simple.” Beasley is black, as is Johnson, and both invoked their personal experiences in framing their messages. But similar statements have come from white judges. Clemens A. Landau, the presiding judge of Utah’s Salt Lake City Justice Court, wrote, “We are painfully aware that municipal courts like ours have historically been situated on, or at
“We must decry the failures of justice and equity just as forcefully as we decry violence,” Chief Justice Cheri Beasley of the North Carolina Supreme Court said this month. least very near, the tip of systemic racism’s spear.” As of June 16, statements had also come from the chief justices or full high courts of Massachusetts, Oregon, Washington, Kentucky, Indiana, Georgia, Alaska, New Jersey, California, Connecticut, Maryland, New York, Hawaii, Maine and the District of Columbia. More are likely to come in the days ahead. It’s understandable to want to dismiss these remarks, like the glib corporate testimonials, as little more than nice sentiments with no legal force. But it is important to take note when those in power name the problem, admit their own complicity and acknowledge their special burden to fix it. In a unanimous letter addressed to the judges and the broader legal community of Washington state, the justices of the Supreme Court there wrote: “As judges, we must recognize the role we have played in devaluing black lives. This very court once held that a cemetery could lawfully deny grieving black parents the right to bury their infant. We cannot undo this wrong — but we can recognize our ability to do better in the future.” This isn’t the first time state supreme courts have used their platform to influence public policy. Many, for example, have led the way in making it easier for poorer Americans to get a good lawyer and a fair process. But racial bias and inequality are at the heart of so much of the legal system’s failure of justice. “Racism and anti-blackness have always operated and continue to operate under color of law,” L. Song Richardson, dean of the law school at the University of California, Irvine, told me. Richardson, who studies implicit racial and gender bias in policing, said, “Part of the reason we’re where we are today is that laws and judges have played their part in
being the architects of oppression.” That architecture consists of a criminal-justice system that took shape largely in the Jim Crow era and that is reinforced today by judge-made doctrines like qualified immunity, which makes it almost impossible to hold lawenforcement officers and their supervisors accountable for violating Americans’ civil rights or even killing them. The combined effect is that the courts have allowed police violence, toward black people in particular, to spiral unchecked. The injustices don’t stop there, of course. From policing to prosecution to jury selection to incarceration to parole and probation, the evidence of disparate treatment of black people in the criminal-justice system is overwhelming and irrefutable. And because more than 95% of litigation flows through state courts — not including traffic court — how those courts understand their job and decide cases will be crucial to establishing any lasting systemic reforms. As good as it is to see all these statements, they must be translated into concrete action. “I want to see what decisions they hand down,” said Ian Millhiser, a legal analyst at Vox and the author of “Injustices: The Supreme Court’s History of Comforting the Comfortable and Afflicting the Afflicted.”
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June 19-21, 2020
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NEW YORK TIMES EDITORIAL
When Antifa hysteria sweeps America
Residents gathered this month on a corner in Coquille, Ore., in anticipation of rumored (nonexistent) busloads of antifa activists. By NICHOLAS KRISTOFF
hat can we possibly make of the crisis that unfolded in the remote Oregon seaside town of Coquille? Coquille is a sleepy logging community of 3,800 people, almost all of them white. It is miles and miles from nowhere. Portland is 250 miles to the north. San Francisco is 500 miles to the south. But Fox News is in a frenzy about rioters and looters, and President Donald Trump warns about the antifascist movement known as antifa. So early this month as a small group of local residents planned a peaceful “Black Lives Matter” protest in Coquille, word raced around that three busloads of antifa activists were headed to Coquille to bust up the town. The sheriff and his deputies donned bulletproof vests, prepared their mine-resistant ambush protected armored vehicle and took up positions to fight off the invasion. Almost 200 local people, some shouldering rifles and others holding flags, gathered to protect their town (overshadowing the handful of people who had come to wave Black Lives Matter signs). “I feel defensive and want to protect my home,” one man, Timothy Robinette, told the local newspaper, The World. A sheriff from a nearby county, John Ward, warned citizens in a public Facebook post of rumors that the anti-
fascists could rampage into his area as well. “I was told they are looking for a fight,” he explained. Ward added that he had no problem with peaceful protests — a Black Lives Matter protest had been held peacefully in the local town of Brookings — but he hinted that citizens might want to help police fend off any antifa attack. “Without asking,” he said, “I am sure we have a lot of local boys, too, with guns that will protect our citizens.” Of course, no rampaging anarchists ever showed up. The Battle of Coquille ended without beginning. Similar hysteria about antifa invasions has erupted across the country. I asked my followers on Facebook how earnest citizens could fall prey to such panics, and I was stunned by how many reported similar anxieties in their own towns — sometimes creating dangerous situations. In Forks, Washington, which is overwhelmingly white, a mixed-race family from Spokane that was camping in the area was assumed to be part of a rumored antifa protest. The local newspaper, The Peninsula Daily News, reported that local people aggressively confronted the family — a mom, dad, 16-year-old daughter and grandmother — and accused the visitors of being part of antifa. The family’s vehicle was tailed by four cars of vigilantes, some armed, and then trees were felled across the road to keep the visitors from leaving their campsite. (Four high school students rescued them by cutting
the logs with a chain saw, and sheriff’s deputies escorted them to safety.) Folks, this is insane. It’s a measure of how deluded public discourse has become, how untethered from reality, that a mob of gunmen can terrify campers apparently because of the color of their skin — and think themselves heroes who are defending their communities. All this ugliness may also be a window into the unrest that could unfold this winter if Trump is defeated but claims that the election was stolen from him by immigrants who voted illegally. I’ve occasionally encountered mass hysteria in other countries. In rural Indonesia, I once reported on a mob that was beheading people believed to be sorcerers, then carrying their heads on pikes. But I never imagined that the United States could plunge into such delirium. Antifa, short for anti-fascists, hasn’t killed anyone and appears to have been only a marginal presence in Black Lives Matter protests. None of those arrested on serious federal charges related to the unrest have been linked to antifa. Still, the movement has a mythic status in some rightwing narratives, and Trump and Fox News have hyped the threat. (The Seattle Times caught Fox faking photos to exaggerate unrest in Seattle.) Race-baiting extremists have also tried to manipulate public fears. One Twitter account purportedly run by an antifa group, @Antifa_US, announced May 31 that “tonight’s the night … we move into the residential areas … the white hoods … and we take what’s ours.” But Twitter said that the account was actually run by white supremacists posing as antifa. These antifa panics are where racism and hysteria intersect, in a nation that has more guns than people. They arise when a lying president takes every opportunity not to heal our national divisions but to stoke them, when people live in a news ecosystem that provides no reality check but inflames prejudices and feeds fears. You might think that this kind of hysteria would be self-correcting: Citizens would see that no antifa people show up and then realize that they had been manipulated by people who treat them as dummies. But the narrative actually gaining traction in some quarters is that guns forced the antifa to back off. NBC News, which has published excellent accounts of this hysteria, quoted one armed “defender” of the remote town of Klamath Falls, Oregon, as initially saying that antifa warriors were on the way “to burn everything and to kill white people.” After none showed up, a local bar owner said on Facebook that he was proud of the armed turnout and boasted that antifa activists had been repelled because they “walked into a hornet’s nest.”
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Secretario Salud extiende vigencia para ejercer telemedicina Por THE STAR l secretario del Departamento de Salud (DS), LorenEministrativa zo González Feliciano, firmó el jueves la Orden Ad449 con el fin de extender la autorización
para que los médicos puedan ejercer la práctica de la telemedicina en Puerto Rico. Dicha orden administrativa tiene vigencia hasta el 31 de diciembre de 2020 o mientras dure la emergencia de COVID-19, decretada por la gobernadora. Como parte de los servicios de telemedicina, se destacan las consultas médicas por teléfono o por cualquier otro medio autorizado para evaluar pacientes; el envío de recetas, referidos u órdenes médicas por fotografía o cualquier otro método electrónico, entre otros servicios. “La situación actual que enfrentamos por la presencia del COVID-19 nos ha obligado a insertarnos con inmediatez en prácticas tecnológicas que no solo garantizan la confidencialidad y la calidad del servicio médico, sino que salvaguardan la salud de los pacientes. El uso de la telemedicina es una de esas herramientas que cumple con todos estos los requisitos, por lo que extiendo la vigencia para dicha práctica hasta el 31 de diciembre de 2020”, explicó el secretario en comunicación escrita. Del mismo modo, González Feliciano añadió que
“progresivamente, vamos a incentivar a los médicos para que puedan expandir el uso de la telemedicina. Además del uso del teléfono para enviar recetas o para consultas médicas, la telemedicina ofrece muchas alternativas y tiene múltiples ventajas, tanto para los médicos como para los pacientes”. Mediante la Resolución Conjunta del Senado 491,
se establece que todo médico que ejerza la práctica de la telemedicina en Puerto Rico podrá facturar los servicios provistos y las compañías de seguros, así como la Administración de Seguros de Salud (ASES), tienen la obligación de pagar los mismos, como si fueran servicios presenciales. Del mismo modo, ASES atemperó sus requisitos para eliminar la firma del médico primario en una receta, orden médica o referido. Por otro lado, las farmacias pueden despachar repeticiones de medicamentos crónicos, aunque el paciente no posea una receta nueva. Para esto, el paciente deberá mostrar el frasco del medicamento vacío, identificado con el nombre del paciente y la dosis. Esto no aplica a medicamentos clasificados como narcóticos por las leyes o reglamentos federales o estatales. “Agradezco a los médicos que ya se han insertado en esta práctica tecnológica, que cada día es más utilizada en el mundo, y exhorto a que más profesionales de la salud atemperen sus recursos para ejercer la telemedicina. Confiamos en que esta extensión sea de beneficio para todo el pueblo de Puerto Rico, particularmente para los pacientes de condiciones crónicas, quienes deben mantener sus consultas regulares, para evitar complicaciones de salud. Es momento de cuidarnos y protegernos para enfrentar el COVID-19 y cualquier otra enfermedad que pueda poner en riesgo nuestras vidas”, concluyó González Feliciano.
Artistas visuales invaden las redes sociales en apoyo a la Liga de Arte de San Juan Por THE STAR econocidos artistas visuales puertorriqueños se unieR ron en apoyo a la Liga de Arte de San Juan para iniciar la serie de “Diálogos entre artistas”, que se transmitirá en
directo a través de su página en Facebook en los meses de julio y agosto. Esta iniciativa es parte del nuevo programa de turismo cultural Explore Art @ La Liga, que inaugura con esta serie su programa de ofrecimientos de experiencias culturales. “Agradecemos encarecidamente a nuestros artistas amigos que, una vez más, se solidarizan con la Liga. Los primeros invitados del ciclo son Rafael Trelles y Nick Quijano, que con 40 años de amistad han entretejido muchas y amenas experiencias de las que nos harán partícipes el miércoles, 1 de julio de 2020 a las 6:00 pm”, señaló Marilú Carrasquillo, directora ejecutiva de la institución educativa, en declaraciones escritas. Estarán invadiendo también las redes, los miércoles de julio y agosto, Garvin Sierra, Antonio Martorell, María Antonia Ordoñez, Elías Adasme, el Colectivo Moriviví, Michelle Ángela Ortiz, Jaime Suárez, Jorge Rigau, Awilda Sterling, Rafael Rivera Rosa y Nelson Sambolín, entre otros. Los diálogos serán libre de costo y estarán dirigidos a todo público, que tendrá la oportunidad de interactuar con los artistas durante el evento. “Hemos querido convidar a la audiencia a que apoyen a la Liga ya sea a través de donaciones o participando de nuestras experiencias culturales. La crisis económica nos ha llevado a un proceso de búsqueda de alternativas
que encaminen a la Liga hacia su sustentabilidad económica. Una de ellas ha sido la ampliación de nuestros servicios, adaptándonos a las modalidades virtuales. Sobre esas premisas nace el concepto de Explore Art @ La Liga, que propicia este ciclo de diálogos”, añadió Carrasquillo. Explore Art @ la Liga, que coordina la experimentada productora y gestora cultural Amalia García Padilla, vio interrumpida la apertura de ofrecimientos al turismo local e internacional este verano a causa de la pandemia del COVID-19. El programa, próximamente, lanzará ofrecimientos de experiencias artísticas y culturales en línea. Una vez se pueda regresar a la actividad presencial, turis-
tas locales e internacionales podrán hacer reservaciones para disfrutar de las vibrantes experiencias de arte, diurnas y nocturnas, que ofrecerá la Liga durante todo el año, por vacaciones, festividades y ratos libres en Puerto Rico. Compartir con amigos y familia en estas experiencias creativas y recorridos caminados por el histórico Viejo San Juan, disfrutar de nuestra gente, historia y cultura serán inspiraciones para hacer arte, aprender nuevas técnicas, crear piezas propias para llevar a casa y vivir una experiencia cultural puertorriqueña, única y memorable. Más información sobre esta iniciativa cultural, puede encontrarse en la página web exploreartpr.com.
June 19-21, 2020
The San Juan Daily Star
‘That ’70s Show’ actor Danny Masterson charged with raping 3 women By JULIA JACOBS
he actor Danny Masterson, known for his roles in the sitcoms “That ’70s Show” and “The Ranch,” has been charged with raping three women in the early 2000s, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office said on Wednesday. Masterson is accused of raping a 23-year-old woman whom he had invited to his home in Hollywood Hills sometime between October and December of 2003, the district attorney’s office said in a news release. He is also accused of raping a 28-year-old woman that same year as well as a 23-year-old woman in 2001. All of the allegations of rape occurred in the actor’s home, the news release said. Masterson, 44, was charged with three counts of rape by force or fear, and faces a maximum sentence of 45 years to life in prison if convicted. The actor played Steven Hyde in “That ’70s Show” between 1998 and 2006 and starred in the Netflix comedy “The Ranch” before he was fired in 2017. In a statement, Masterson’s lawyer, Tom Mesereau, said that the actor is innocent and that Masterson and his wife
are in “complete shock” that the “nearly 20-year-old allegations” have resulted in charges. “The people who know Mr. Masterson know his character and know the allegations to be false,” the statement said. The district attorney’s office said that it had declined to file separate sexual assault charges against Masterson in two other cases because, in one instance, there was insufficient evidence and, in another, because of the statute of limitations. Masterson was arrested on Wednesday morning and was later released on statutory bail, his lawyer said. His bail was set at $3.3 million, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, and his arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 18. In 2017, after Netflix fired Masterson from “The Ranch” amid allegations that he had raped four women, the actor responded that “law enforcement investigated these claims more than 15 years ago and determined them to be without merit.” Tony Ortega, a former editor of The Village Voice, reported in 2017 that at least three of the women claimed they were pressured to keep quiet by the Church of Scientology, to which they
and Masterson belonged. The Church of Scientology denied that it had pressured victims. The charges of pressure by the church were repeated in a lawsuit filed last year against Masterson and the church by four women who have accused Masterson of rape. A lawyer for the plaintiffs, Robert Thompson, said the criminal charges against Masterson are closely related to the accusations made in the
lawsuit by the women who said that after they accused Masterson of sexual assault, people associated with the church had stalked, threatened and surveilled them as they spoke out about their allegations. Three of the women had been personally involved with the church. Thompson released a statement on behalf of the women that said that they were “thankful that the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office is finally seeking criminal justice against Masterson after a three-year investigation.” In the lawsuit, one woman said Masterson sexually assaulted her throughout their relationship. After she went to the police, she said people associated with the church loitered outside her home, looked through her windows and filmed her home and family, according to the lawsuit. In court papers responding to the accusations by the women, a lawyer for Masterson called the lawsuit a “money grab” and a “publicity stunt orchestrated by Masterson’s ex-girlfriends.” A lawyer for the church described one of the women’s claims in court papers as “false and malicious” and said her experiences with her trash disappearing and people loitering near her house were simply the “price of modern, urban life.”
‘Bold and the Beautiful’ to resume production with on-set COVID rules By SARAH BAHR
he Forresters will be back scheming and sashaying on set on Wednesday when CBS’ soap opera “The Bold and the Beautiful” becomes what is believed to be the first scripted U.S. broadcast series to return to production amid the pandemic. The Emmy-winning series, which has filmed more than 8,000 episodes since its premiere in 1987, was recently renewed through 2022. Production has been shut down since March 17 because of coronavirus-related restrictions, and the last original episode aired in April.
Of course, it’s unsure when viewers will be able to see the drama unfold, as no air date has been set for the series’ return. But the hope is that it would be in early to mid-July, said Eva Basler, the vice president of communications at Bell-Phillip TV Productions, the studio that produces the series. Safety protocols will include masks for all actors and crew members — except the actors who are filming a scene — as well as regular testing for cast and crew, and shorter work days with fewer actors on set and staggered call times. All of the measures are in accordance with the COVID-19 guidelines set by the city, county and state; the series
also hired a COVID-19 coordinator to ensure compliance. While “The Bold and the Beautiful” may be the first scripted network series to return to production, some reality shows have been continuing to tape remotely. “American Idol” and “The Voice” returned in May. “Idol” producers shipped video and lighting equipment to performers and asked them to record from their bedrooms, backyards or basements. “The Bachelorette” has not yet returned to production, but producers have been exploring renting a private resort for several weeks to do so. Tyler Perry became the first Hollywood producer to announce a start date for
a U.S. network show filming in North America last month when he said he planned to begin production of his Black Entertainment Television show “Sistas” on July 8 at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta. He said he would fly out-of-town cast members to the set on his private plane and that cast and crew would live on campus at the studio, which is a 330-acre decommissioned U.S. Army compound. Most U.S. TV studios have been targeting late August, September or October dates to resume production. The Emmy Awards are still set for Sept. 20, with Jimmy Kimmel hosting, but entry, nomination and voting deadlines have been moved back.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
How Richard Pryor called out the cops By JASON ZINOMAN
olice brutality has a surprisingly long history in comedy. An officer swinging a nightstick was one of the most common images in early comic strips, and Charlie Chaplin was always running from the police, dodging clubs and bullets. Those cops were generally portrayed as clownish bullies, and their violence, divorced from any racial context, played as a kind of shtick. When they swung their clubs, you never really felt the blow. More than anyone else, Richard Pryor changed that. He wasn’t the first stand-up to take aim at racist policing. Pioneering political comic Dick Gregory, in his 1961 debut album, “In Living Black & White,” quipped: “In Chicago, we have enough cops. It’s just a matter of getting them on our side.” In the next decade, Pryor, a student of both Chaplin and Gregory, applied a biting, more visceral perspective while making analysis of racist policing a hallmark of his. His albums and specials in that era laid the foundation for modern stand-up, and nowhere is that more true than in sets about police brutality. Some comics have broached the topic without bringing personal experience to the subject. But others, especially African American stand-ups, have consistently examined the pain, costs and arguments around biased law enforcement in a way that has been rare in Hollywood. Pryor once said he was “raised to hate the cops,” and his comedy was alive to the hurt and humiliations of everyday police abuse. He didn’t just say the police beat up black people. They “degraded” them. His cops weren’t the bumbling fools of silent films. They were “dangerous.” And two decades before Ice Cube rapped about “black police showing out for the white cops,” Pryor’s set piece about “ ‘I Spy’ cops” — a reference to the TV show starring Bill Cosby and Robert Culp as an interracial team of intelligence agents — described black partners of white officers earning their stripes by harassing black civilians. About jail, he joked: “You go down looking for justice, that’s what you’ll find. Just us.” In his breakthrough 1974 album, Pryor wondered why persistent police brutality didn’t make black people “go mad.” Then, using his masterful dramatic powers, he invited his audience to imagine a man who works hard during the week rewarding himself with a night out and getting dressed up, only to be pulled over because of a robbery in the neighborhood. Dramatizing the violation of the pat-down, Pryor considers the impact, imitating the deflated man, who abruptly ends the evening to “go home and beat your kids.” That gut punch quiets the crowd, before Pryor adds: You have to take it out on somebody. In contrast with the amiable treatment white people receive from a friendly cop who lives in their neighborhood, Pryor demonstrated how black people must make a show of being nonthreatening when stopped. Enunciating every word slowly at a volume and tension that performs compliance, he did an impression of what was required: “I. Am Reaching. Into. My. Pocket. For. My License.” That record sold more than 1 million copies and was so popular that after one show, Detroit officers told Pryor they heard the line repeated from an African American man they stopped.
Many jokes in the past few decades owe a debt to that four-minute bit. In his recent special, Michael Che says: “My brother is a cop. I only see him over Thanksgiving and even then, I’m like: I’m. Reaching. For. The. Potatoes.” In Dave Chappelle’s classic debut special, “Killing Them Softly,” he also does a bit contrasting the difference between black and white people when stopped by the police that echoes Pryor, even down to some of the language of the cops. Chappelle, however, digs deeper into white privilege. Describing a time he was stopped with a white friend, he sounds flabbergasted when his pal immediately confessed to the cop that he was stoned and asked for directions. “A black man would never dream of talking to the police high,” he says. “That’s a waste of weed.” Roy Wood Jr. also has a sharp bit about the lengths black people must go to appear nonthreatening to the police: He says he’s going to start wearing a cap and gown. In recent years, that note of resignation had crept into comedy about this issue, as performers look at, for instance, how ordinary the killings of black men and women at the hands of the police have become. In 2015, Jerrod Carmichael made a fake ad for Funny or Die about smartphones marketed to black families: The devices were designed to film police violence. (“For a limited time, each member of the plan gets a special brutality-proof case for free.”) Chris Rock began his latest Netflix special with this line: “You
Pryor’s comedy was alive to the hurt and humiliations of everyday police abuse.
would think the cops would occasionally kill a white kid just to make it look good.” Long before television and movie portraits of the police were being reexamined by critics and artists in the wake of the recent Black Lives Matter protests, Seaton Smith had a sharp, understated bit on “Conan” about his love for TV cops who follow their own rules. “Now I’m like, mmmm, follow the rules.” In 2018, Wyatt Cenac dedicated an entire season of his HBO show “Problem Areas” to issues of policing, which has now been put online free. He examined with nuance many of the reform ideas that were once seen as marginal but have now moved toward the mainstream, like the abolition of the police. When Pryor joked about police brutality in the mid-1970s, he was speaking to a white audience that he assumed would be skeptical. His premise was that they didn’t see what was going on in his community. But in stand-up, that perspective shifted, particularly after the police beating of Rodney King and the subsequent protests in the 1990s. By 2000, Chappelle was saying that police brutality was common knowledge among white people, before needling them for once being skeptical. “Didn’t you think it was a little suspicious that every black person the police find has crack sprinkled on them?” Still, police abuses have become such a common subject in comedy that it can feel as if we’ve returned to the days of the Keystone Kops, when aggressive law enforcement was just another trope. In his new special, “Out to Lunch,” shot before the recent protests, Mark Normand says the news has been so disturbing that he looks to the little things, like those fun facts inside the cap of a Snapple bottle. He gives an example: “Polar bears used to be brown, but through evolution they turned white, because police were shooting them.” Comics are doing work on police brutality with more gravity even if the pandemic has limited their ability to work on material. Some of the most powerful statements on social media have been from comics like Jon Laster, who turned his Instagram page into a collection of shattering testimonials from black people about interactions with the police. As often happens, Chappelle set the pace with a set he performed near his home in Ohio and released last week. At one point, he expressed anger at CNN host Don Lemon, who had asked why celebrities had not spoken out. Exasperated, Chappelle asked if Lemon had ever seen his work. He had a point. Over the past few decades, Chappelle has repeatedly made comedy from the pain of police brutality, but what stood out about his recent set was how his typically grave tone didn’t pivot to a joke, how often he let his unfiltered outrage sit there. Just as Hannah Gadsby stopped offering punchlines in “Nanette,” Chappelle went long stretches without jokes, producing a kind of stand-up tragedy. When he asked what the police officer whose knee was on the neck of George Floyd could be thinking, he spoke with a righteous anger that comedy could not address. What makes Chappelle such a master storyteller is how he telescopes broad swaths of history through his personal narrative in a way that lets you know the past haunts the present. Such continuity tells its own sad story. Look at stand-up comedy and you’ll find more than 60 years of jokes about police brutality. What’s not funny is how little they’ve changed.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Why wine? Why Burgundy? Why now?
Good wine can inspire thoughtful contemplation and introspection, which perhaps now more than ever is in short supply. By ERIC ASIMOV
had a lot of reasons not to write this column. For one, it stretches back to the other side of the divide, before the pandemic, when the wine panel was able to convene and taste together without trepidation. It seems unreal to recall sitting down in unmasked fellowship on a chilly day at the end of February. We had the pleasure of tasting village reds from the Côte de Beaune, the southern section of the heart of Burgundy, all from the deliciously drinkable 2017 vintage. As usual, Florence Fabricant and I were joined by two guests, Katja Scharnagl, chef sommelier at Le Bernardin, and Matthew Conway, the wine director and a partner at Marc Forgione and Peasant. So much has changed. Now, the future of these and many restaurants is uncertain, as are the fate of millions of jobs and livelihoods. The cost of the wine also gave me pause. Although these bottles are good values given the current high cost of Burgundy, they are nonetheless relatively expensive at $30 to $70. With so many people hurting, should we really be considering them? I had doubts as well beyond the pandemic. Given the
strife and animosity in the wake of the George Floyd killing, and the existential questions Americans are now debating, how do we even begin to talk about wine? It’s an internal dialogue that I imagine occurs among many serious-minded individuals who occasionally feel a sense of futility, as if their fields have overnight become irrelevant frivolities given the world’s problems. It is true that wine is often no more than a pleasant triviality, something to take the edge off, to ease pain. Opening a bottle and pouring a glass has always served as a popular mode of self-medication, no more so than in these fearful, lonely times. But good wine can also inspire thoughtful contemplation and introspection, which perhaps now more than ever is in short supply. And it can lead to caring conversations as well, to listening as well as talking, to shared bonds, to new memories and more humane ways of thinking. I’m not saying good wine is a panacea. It’s up to people to find solutions. But wine has the power to bring people together as surely as a great meal. Few wines are better equipped than Burgundy to inspire this sort of reflection on values, joy, sorrow and shared humanity. It’s no accident that in the last 20 years, Burgundy has become the most coveted wine in the world. That is due in
part to status-seeking and trophy-chasing, undeniably. But Burgundy’s arrival as a luxury good followed its rise in popularity. Part of its appeal is its soulfully complex, subtle and joyful aromas and flavors. The pleasure of Burgundy is amplified many times over by an intellectual attraction to the idea of terroir. This notion that wine can express the culture of the place in which it was produced is at its most powerful in Burgundy. Nowhere else are the characteristics of land and community envisioned with such intricate detail. The basic idea is that where the grapes grow will dictate a wine’s personality. A Gevrey-Chambertin, in this way of thinking, will taste different from a Volnay. It ought to, and if it doesn’t, something is wrong. But that’s just the beginning. The culture and upbringing of the vigneron, the person who grows the grapes and makes the wine, is also paramount. A Gevrey-Chambertin made by a Volnay vigneron will differ from a Gevrey vigneron’s Gevrey. In Burgundy, that’s to be expected. Not only do the soil, drainage, bedrock and climate of Gevrey differ from those of Volnay, the entire way of thinking and feeling, and therefore of making wine, differs as well. This is what makes Burgundy so fascinating to so many people. That’s not to suggest that the exercise of identifying one terroir rather than another is easy. The differences are subtle and nuanced, and it takes long-term immersive experience to achieve that level of expertise. But experts can do it. For the rest of us, it’s great and delicious fun to try to decipher terroir, though just as often it’s fine to ignore the question altogether in favor of a good meal, good company and a conversation that has nothing to do with wine. (END OPTIONAL TRIM.) I mentioned that our subject was reds from the Côte de Beaune. The heart of Burgundy, the Côte d’Or, is a long, narrow swath of land that encompasses limestone-and-clay soils, flatlands and a series of east- and south-facing slopes south of the city of Dijon. The northern half, the Côte de Nuits, contains the most esteemed red wine appellations, including GevreyChambertin, Morey-St.-Denis, Chambolle-Musigny and Vosne/-Romanée. The southern half, the Côte de Beaune, begins just north of the city of Beaune, and includes wonderful white wine appellations like Corton-Charlemagne, Meursault, Puligny-Montrachet and Chassagne-Montrachet. It also includes a number of red wine areas like Volnay, Pommard, Monthelie and Santenay; numerous appellations around Beaune, including Savigny-lès-Beaune and Chorey-lès-Beaune, and around Corton, like Aloxe-Corton and Pernand-Vergelesses. Within the hierarchy of Burgundy, in which vineyards are judged on their potential to yield great and distinctive
The San Juan Daily Star wines, the most exalted vineyards are the grand crus. Just underneath are the premier cru vineyards, which are thought to be exceptional enough to warrant singling out,but not so great as to achieve the peak ranking. These days, grand cru Burgundies are priced well beyond the reach of most consumers. Increasingly, premier crus are as well, with many over $100 a bottle. But village wines — those that are distinctive enough to reflect the characteristics of a village, but from vineyards not judged to have further singular features — are still sometimes within reach. Those from the Côte de Beaune are especially good values, relatively speaking, because the region has generally been more exalted for its whites than for its reds. We tasted 20 bottles from the 2017 vintage, which I called deliciously drinkable because they won’t require years of aging and because, yes, the wines are easygoing in the best sense. We all loved the wines. Our favorites were elegant, beautiful expressions of what Burgundy has to offer. Matthew felt that climate change had benefited village wines in that fully ripening the grapes was far less of a problem than it might have been in some past decades. Florence said 2017 was a great vintage for drinkers if not collectors, while Katja pointed out that, as good as the vintage was, some of the wines seemed too oaky. Those did not make our top 10. Our top bottle was the graceful, energetic Savigny-lès-Beaune from Chandon de Briailles, a serious wine that was nonetheless joyful, a neat trick. But then, Chandon de Briailles is an excellent producer, and its wines are often great values. Even in a year like 2017, they will reward a bit of aging. The three producers in the next tier were likewise superb, including our runner-
June 19-21, 2020
up, the opulent yet focused Pommard from Benjamin Leroux; the balanced, energetic, slightly exotic Monthelie from Pierre Morey at No. 3; and the savory, complex Volnay from Henri Boillot. These were followed by the juicy, graceful Chorey-lèsBeaune Les Beaumonts from Louis Chenu Père & Filles. This was my first encounter with Chenu, run by two sisters who took over from their father. I very much appreciated the easygoing grace of the wine. At No. 6 was the subtle, complex Savigny-lès-Beaune Vieilles Vignes from Pierre Guillemot, while No. 7 was the spicy, floral Aloxe-Corton from Tollot-Beaut & Fils, at $65 the most expensive bottle in our top 10. The next two bottles were cheaper, both $30, excellent values even if we liked them a cut less than the top seven. They included the rich yet slightly rustic Chorey-lèsBeaune Clos Margot from Bernard Dubois & Fils and the lightly tannic, alluring Chorey-lès-Beaune Le Grand Saussy from Camus-Bruchon. The rich and resonant Santenay Vieilles Vignes from Paul Pillot rounded out our top 10. As I mentioned earlier, this was the result of a February pre-pandemic tasting. It may be that you will find different wines in the marketplace now, though 2017s should still be available. I understand these wines are not cheap. But it’s the cost of doing business if you want to understand or enjoy Burgundy. Some less expensive options might in-
clude wines from the Maranges area, bottles labeled Hautes Côtes de Nuits or Hautes Côtes de Beaune and those from the Côte Chalonnaise, an area to the south of the Côte d’Or. Or consider a splurge if the news should turn good. It’s only wine, I know. It’s not a solution, but I’m glad that we have it. Tasting Notes: The Village Reds — Chandon de Briailles Savigny-lès-Beaune 2017, $47 (3 1/2 stars) Lovely, graceful and energetic, with delicate floral aromas and lingering flavors of earthy red fruits. (Bowler Wine, New York) — Benjamin Leroux Pommard 2017, $63 (3 stars) Full, rich and opulent, yet tightly focused, with aromas and flavors of flowers, red fruits and minerals. (Becky Wasserman & Co./Verity Wine Partners, New York) — Pierre Morey Monthelie 2017, $50 (3 stars) Rich, balanced and energetic, with exotic aromas and flavors of earthy red fruits; needs some time. (Becky Wasserman & Co./ Grand Cru Selections, New York) — Henri Boillot Volnay 2017, $53 (3 stars) Rich, substantial and balanced, with savory, complex, earthy flavors. (Wine Cellars, Briarcliff Manor, New York) — Louis Chenu Père & Filles Choreylès-Beaune Les Beaumonts 2017, $40 (3 stars) Rich and juicy, yet graceful, with easygoing aromas and flavors of flowers and red
fruits. (Wilson Daniels Wholesale, New York) — Pierre Guillemot Savigny-lèsBeaune Vieilles Vignes 2017, $42 (3 stars) Subtle, complex and focused, with floral, mineral and red-fruit flavors. (Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant, Berkeley, California) — Tollot-Beaut & Fils Aloxe-Corton 2017, $65 (3 stars) Lightly tannic, yet pretty, with floral aromas and spicy, herbal accents. (Craft & Estate/Winebow, New York) Best Value — Bernard Dubois & Fils Chorey-lèsBeaune Clos Margot 2017, $30 (2 1/2 stars) Earthy, lightly tannic and rustic, with rich flavors of dark fruits. (Skurnik Wines, New York) — Camus-Bruchon Chorey-lèsBeaune Le Grand Saussy 2017, $30 (2 1/2 stars) Lightly tannic, with floral and red-fruit flavors, and a touch of citrus. (Polaner Selections, Mount Kisco, New York) — Paul Pillot Santenay Vieilles Vignes 2017 $50, (2 1/2 stars) Rich, robust and resonant, with fresh, red berry fruit. (Skurnik Wines)
June 19-21, 2020
The San Juan Daily Star
Sweet, tender and studded with strawberries By JERRELLE GUY
here’s something so homey about a warm dessert so tender you must serve it with a big spoon and a deep bowl. Depending on the occasion, there are a couple of recipes you could try. One is spoonbread, the usually savory, sometimes sweet Southern dish. To make it, you’d stir fully or par-cooked cornmeal into a custardy batter, then lighten it with whipped egg whites. You’d get something gritty and coarse, like cornbread, but still supple enough to scoop, like pudding. You should save this arguably more celebratory dessert for a holiday potluck. Then there’s pudding cake, often made by pouring boiling-hot liquid over a batter right before pushing it into the oven, sometimes with a bain-marie steaming underneath. This would end in a miraculously fluffy cake on top and a silky, custard on the bottom. It’s the perfect weekend project. But if it’s a Wednesday, and it’s just you all alone, or with a friend nearby, there’s this spoon cake. As formless as its cousins, it’s aptly named for the way it’s served: spooned to catch the crusted edges and barely set center in one serving. It’s less persnickety but just as satisfying. The batter comes together quickly, only requiring a cup of flour, some melted butter, brown sugar, milk, baking powder and a little bit of salt. Once the basic ingredients are whisked together in a bowl, the batter is moved to a buttered dish. It will assume the shape of whatever dish you bake it in, with slight variations in cook time, of course. If you prefer attractive, smaller portions, the recipe works well divided across two, shallow 15-ounce ceramic dishes, square or round, it won’t matter. The surface is then covered in freshly muddled strawberries, which gives the batter its vibrant color and flavor but creates enough liquid to keep the
Strawberry Spoon Cake Total time: 30 minutes, plus coolingYield: 4 servings 1/2 cup (115 grams) unsalted butter (1 stick), melted, plus more for greasing 5 ounces (145 grams) frozen and thawed or fresh, hulled strawberries (about 1 cup)
cake steaming as it bakes. The cake is wonderful when it’s served simply, like this, but it can also take on a warmer tone with a dusting of ginger or cardamom, or even veer slightly savory with the addition of ribboned basil and a drizzle of balsamic syrup. 2/3 cup (150 grams) packed light brown sugar 1/2 cup (120 milliliters) whole milk, at room temperature 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1 cup (130 grams) all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder Vanilla ice cream, for serving 1. Heat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8-inch (square or round) baking dish with butter. Set aside. 2. Using your hands or the back of a fork, mash the berries to release all their juices, and stir in 1/3 cup of the brown sugar. Set aside.
Like spoonbread, it’s meant to be served hot, and also like spoonbread, it’s meant to sit nestled beside something else. In this case, it must always be a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream. Once the warm cake and creamy ice cream are jumbled together, your weeknight is made. 3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, remaining 1/3 cup brown sugar, milk and salt, then add the flour and baking powder and continue whisking just until the batter is smooth. Transfer the batter (it’s not much) to the greased baking dish and spread evenly into corners. 4. Spoon the strawberries and all their juices over the top of the cake batter. Place in the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or just when a toothpick comes out clean in the center. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 3 to 5 minutes before spooning into bowls. Serve warm with ice cream.
The San Juan Daily Star
Friday, June 19, 2020
CIVIL NUM. FA2019CV00606. SUCESION DE ISRAEL ROSARIO, ANTONIO SOBRE: CANCELACIÓN DE MARTINEZ LUGO, RAMON Y FRANCES ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO PAGARÉ EXTRAVIADO POR TAMBIEN CONOCIDO MARIE todos de apellidos DE PUERTO RICO TRIBULA VÍA JUDICIAL. NOTIFICANAL DE PRIMERA INSTANCIA COMO ISRAEL DE MARTINEZ COURET CIÓN DE SENTENCIA POR SALA SUPERIOR DE YAUCO. JESUS MARTINEZ LUGO, PETICIONARIOS EDICTO. ROSA JULIA COURET compuesta por ROBERTO EX-PARTE A: ---Demetrio Piña y CARABALLO, por sí y Eusebia Cruz, Isaac ANTONIO, ISRAEL DE CIVIL NUM: YU2020CV00001. SOBRE: EXPEDIENTE DE como miembro de la Mulero Meléndez y Ruth JESUS, MARÍA DEL DOMINIO, ART. 195 LEY DEL SUCESION DE ISRAEL ROSARIO, ANTONIO REGISTRO DE LA PROPIE- Herminia Vega Escobar MARTINEZ LUGO, RAMON Y FRANCES DAD INMOBILIARIA DE PR. * Alturas de San Pedro, TAMBIEN CONOCIDO MARIE todos de apellidos EMPLAZAMIENTO POR EDIC- U24 calle F, Fajardo PR TO. COMO ISRAEL DE 00738 MARTINEZ COURET A: SUCESION JESUS MARTINEZ LUGO, PETICIONARIOS * Alturas de San Pedro, PEREZ VELEZ compuesta por ROBERTO EX-PARTE U24 calle San Gabriel, ANTONIO, ISRAEL DE CIVIL NUM: YU2020CV00001. Se le notifica a usted que ha Fajardo PR 00738 sido radicada ante este TribuSOBRE: EXPEDIENTE DE JESUS, MARÍA DEL * Alturas de San Pedro, DOMINIO, ART. 195 LEY DEL nal de Primera Instancia, Sala ROSARIO, ANTONIO U24 calle San Andres, REGISTRO DE LA PROPIE- de Superior de Yauco, una PetiRAMON Y FRANCES Fajardo PR 00738 DAD INMOBILIARIA DE PR. ción de Dominio. Usted deberá MARIE todos de apellidos EMPLAZAMIENTO POR EDIC- presente al tribunal su alega- ---FULANO Y MENGANO ción responsiva dentro de los TO. MARTINEZ COURET DE TAL, POSIBLES 30 días desde la última publicaPETICIONARIOS A: ENSENADA TENEDORES ción de este edicto, sirviéndole EX-PARTE CONSTRUCTION, CORP. copia de dicha contestación a DESCONOCIDOS DEL CIVIL NUM: YU2020CV00001. Se le notifica a usted que ha la Lcda. Teresa Pacheco CaPAGARÉ. SOBRE: EXPEDIENTE DE sido radicada ante este Tribu-
DOMINIO, ART. 195 LEY DEL REGISTRO DE LA PROPIEDAD INMOBILIARIA DE PR. EMPLAZAMIENTO POR EDICTO.
A: JOHN DOE / MARIE DOE
Se le notifica a usted que ha sido radicada ante este Tribunal de Primera Instancia, Sala de Superior de Yauco, una Petición de Dominio. Usted deberá presente al tribunal su alegación responsiva dentro de los 30 días desde la última publicación de este edicto, sirviéndole copia de dicha contestación a la Lcda. Teresa Pacheco Camacho, con oficinas en la Calle Santiago Vivaldi Pacheco, Número 24-B, Yauco, Puerto Rico, dirección postal: P.O. Box 1942, Caguas, Puerto Rico 00726-1942, teléfono número 787-267-5784, fax número 787267-6328, correo electrónico email@example.com, abogada de los Peticionarios. Se le apercibe que, de no hacerlo así, el tribunal podrá dictar sentencia en rebeldía en su contra y conceder el remedio solicitado en la petición, o cualquier otro, si el tribunal, en el ejercicio de su sana discreción, lo entiende procedente. EXPEDIDO bajo mi firma y sello de este Tribunal en Yauco, Puerto Rico, hoy 12 de marzo de 2020. Luz Mayra Caraballo Garcia, Sec Regional. Delia Aponte Velazquez, Sec Auxiliar.
LEGAL NOTICE ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO DE PUERTO RICO TRIBUNAL DE PRIMERA INSTANCIA SALA SUPERIOR DE YAUCO.
ROSA JULIA COURET CARABALLO, por sí y como miembro de la @
nal de Primera Instancia, Sala de Superior de Yauco, una Petición de Dominio. Usted deberá presente al tribunal su alegación responsiva dentro de los 30 días desde la última publicación de este edicto, sirviéndole copia de dicha contestación a la Lcda. Teresa Pacheco Camacho, con oficinas en la Calle Santiago Vivaldi Pacheco, Número 24-B, Yauco, Puerto Rico, dirección postal: P.O. Box 1942, Caguas, Puerto Rico 00726-1942, teléfono número 787-267-5784, fax número 787267-6328, correo electrónico firstname.lastname@example.org, abogada de los Peticionarios. Se le apercibe que, de no hacerlo así, el tribunal podrá dictar sentencia en rebeldía en su contra y conceder el remedio solicitado en la petición, o cualquier otro, si el tribunal, en el ejercicio de su sana discreción, lo entiende procedente. EXPEDIDO bajo mi firma y sello de este Tribunal en Yauco, Puerto Rico, hoy 12 de marzo de 2020. Luz Mayra Caraballo Garcia, Sec Regional. Delia Aponte Velazquez, Sec Auxiliar.
macho, con oficinas en la Calle Santiago Vivaldi Pacheco, Número 24-B, Yauco, Puerto Rico, dirección postal: P.O. Box 1942, Caguas, Puerto Rico 00726-1942, teléfono número 787-267-5784, fax número 787267-6328, correo electrónico email@example.com, abogada de los Peticionarios. Se le apercibe que, de no hacerlo así, el tribunal podrá dictar sentencia en rebeldía en su contra y conceder el remedio solicitado en la petición, o cualquier otro, si el tribunal, en el ejercicio de su sana discreción, lo entiende procedente. EXPEDIDO bajo mi firma y sello de este Tribunal en Yauco, Puerto Rico, hoy 12 de marzo de 2020. Luz Mayra Caraballo Garcia, Sec Regional. Delia Aponte Velazquez, Sec Auxiliar. ****
Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico TRIBUNAL GENERAL DE JUSTICIA Tribunal de Primera Instancia Sala Superior de FAJARDO.
BANCO POPULAR DE PUERTO RICO DEMANDANTE Vs.
BANCO SANTANDER ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO DE PUERTO RICO DE PUERTO RICO TRIBUCOMO SUCESOR DEL NAL DE PRIMERA INSTANCIA SALA SUPERIOR DE YAUCO. BANCO CENTRAL ROSA JULIA COURET HISPANO PUERTO CARABALLO, por sí y RICO, DEMETRIO PIÑA como miembro de la Y EUSEBIA CRUZ,ISAAC SUCESION DE ISRAEL MULERO MELÉNDEZ Y MARTINEZ LUGO, RUTH HERMINIA VEGA TAMBIEN CONOCIDO ESCOBAR, FULANO COMO ISRAEL DE Y MENGANO DE TAL, JESUS MARTINEZ LUGO, POSIBLES TENEDORES compuesta por ROBERTO DESCONOCIDOS DEL ANTONIO, ISRAEL DE PAGARÉ DEMANDADO JESUS, MARÍA DEL
EL (LA) SECRETARIO(A) le notifica a usted que el día 14 de marzo de 2020, este Tribunal ha dictado Sentencia o Sentencia Parcial o Resolución en este caso, que ha sido debidamente registrada y archivada en autos donde podrá usted enterarse detalladamente de los términos de la misma. Esta notificación se publicará una sola vez en un periódico de circulación general en Puerto Rico, dentro de los 10 días siguientes a su notificación. Y, siendo o representado usted una parte en el procedimiento sujeta a los términos de la Sentencia o Sentencia Parcial o Resolución, de la cual puede establecerse recurso de revisión o apelación dentro del término de 30 días contados a partir de la publicación por edicto de esta notificación, dirijo a usted esta notificación que se considerará hecha en la fecha de la publicación de este edicto. Copia de esta notificación ha sido archivada en los autos de este caso, con fecha de 29 de mayo de 2020. En Fajardo, Puerto Rico, 29 de mayo de 2020. WANDA I. SEGUÍ REYES - SEC. REGIONAL. f/ LYDIA E. RIVERA MIRANDA, Sec del Trib Conf I.
25 TADO LIBRE ASOCIADO DE PUERTO RICO. SS.
A: JOSE M. BRITO RAMOS
POR MEDIO del presente edicto se le notifica de la radicación de una demanda en cobro de dinero por la vía ordinaria en la que se alega que usted adeuda a la parte demandante, Oriental Bank, ciertas sumas de dinero, y las costas, gastos y honorarios de abogado de este litigio. El demandante, Oriental Bank, ha solicitado que se dicte sentencia en contra suya y que se le ordene pagar las cantidades reclamadas en la demanda. POR EL PRESENTE EDICTO se le emplaza para que presente al tribunal su alegación responsiva a la demanda dentro de los treinta (30) días de haber sido diligenciado este emplazamiento, excluyéndose el día del diligenciamiento. Usted deberá presentar su alegación responsiva a través del Sistema Unificado de Manejo y Administración de Casos (SUMAC), al cual puede acceder utilizando la siguiente dirección electrónica: https://unired.ramajudicial. pr/sumac/, salvo que se represente por derecho propio, en cuyo caso deberá presentar su alegación responsiva en la Secretaría del Tribunal. Si usted deja de presentar su alegación responsiva dentro del referido término, el tribunal podrá dictar sentencia en rebeldía en su contra, y conceder el remedio solicitado en la Demanda, o cualquier otro, si el tribunal, en el ejercicio de su sana discreción, lo entiende procedente. Se le advierte que dentro de los diez (10) días siguientes a la publicación del presente edicto, se le estará enviando a usted por correo certificado con acuse de recibo, una copia del emplazamiento y de la demanda presentada al lugar de su última dirección conocida: Bo. Campo Rico, 2St Pare. 173, Canóvanas, PR 00729; PO Box 515, Canóvanas, PR 007290515. EXPEDIDO bajo mi firma y el sello del Tribunal en Carolina, Puerto Rico, hoy. día 21 de febrero de 2020. Lcda. Marilyn Aponte Rodriguez, Secretaria Regional. Maricruz Aponte Alicea, Sec Auxiliar.
ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO DE PUERTO RICO TRIBULEGAL NOTICE NAL DE PRIMERA INSTANCIA ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO SALA DE CANOVANAS. DE PUERTO RICO TRIBUORIENTAL BANK, NAL DE PRIMERA INSTANCIA Demandante, V. SUPERIOR DE SALIJOSE M. BRITO RAMOS, SALA NAS. Demandados CIVIL NUM.: CN2019CV00540 WILMINGTON SAVINGS FUND SOCIETY, FSB, (406). SOBRE: COBRO DE DINERO POR LA VÍA ORDINA- d/b/a Christiana Trust, as RIA. EMPLAZAMIENTO POR indenture Trustee, for the EDICTO. ESTADOS UNIDOS CSMC 2016-PR 1 Trust DE AMERICA EL PRESIDENTE DE LOS EE.UU. EL ES- Mortgage-Backed Notes,
Parte Demandante Vs.
ASSOCIATES INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS CORPORATION Y OTROS
Parte Demandada CIVIL NUM: SA2019CV00367. SOBRE: CANCELACION DE PAGARE EXTRAVIADO. ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMÉRICA EL PRESIDENTE DE LOS EE. UU. EL ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO DE PUERTO RICO. SS.
A: ASSOCIATES INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS CORPORATION haciendo negocio como CITIFINANCIAL
POR LA PRESENTE se les emplaza y requiere para que conteste la demanda dentro de los treinta (30) días siguientes a la publicación de este Edicto. Usted deberá radicar su alegación responsiva a través del Sistema Unificado de Manejo y Administración de Casos (SUMAC), al cual puede acceder utilizando la siguiente dirección electrónica: http://unired.ramajudicial.pr/ sumac/, salvo que se presente por derecho propio, en cuyo caso deberá radicar el original de su contestación ante el Tribunal correspondiente y notifique con copia a los abogados de la parte demandante, Lcda. Marjalilsa Colón Villanueva, al PO BOX 7970, Ponce, P.R. 00732; Teléfono: 787-8434168. En dicha demanda se tramita un procedimiento de cancelación de pagare extraviado. Se alega en dicho procedimiento que se extravió pagare a favor de Associates International Holdings Corporation, haciendo negocio como Citifinancial, o a su orden, por la suma de $27,039.40, con intereses al 10%, vencedero el primero de octubre de 2009, según surge de la mediante la escritura 331, otorgada en Ponce, Puerto Rico el día 27 de septiembre de 2004, ante el notario Elba I. Cruz Rodríguez. Inscrita al folio ciento cuarenta y tres (143) del tomo dos cientos dos (202) de Salinas, finca número siete mil ochocientos treinta y cuatro (7,834). Registro de la Propiedad de Guayama. Inscripción 4da. La propiedad que garantiza dicho pagaré: RÚSTICA: Parcela marcada con el número noventa (90) en el plano de parcelación de la comunidad rural Arcadio Maldonado del Barrio Lapa, del término municipal de Salinas, Puerto Rico, con una cabida superficial de quinientos dieciséis punto treinta y tres (516.33) metros cuadrados. En lindes por el NORTE, con la
parcela número ochenta y nueve (89) de la comunidad; por el SUR, con la parcela número noventa y uno (91) de la comunidad; por el ESTE, con la calle número nueve (9) de la comunidad y por el OESTE, con la parcela ochenta y seis (86); ochenta y siete (87) y ochenta y ocho (88) de la comunidad. Inscrita al folio ciento cuarenta y cinco (145) del tomo doscientos dos (202) de Salinas, finca número siete mil ochocientos treinta y cuatro (7,834), Registro de la Propiedad, Sección de Guayama. SE LES APERCIBE que, de no hacer sus alegaciones responsivas a la demanda dentro del término aquí dispuesto, se les anotará la rebeldía y se dictará Sentencia, concediéndose el remedio solicitado en la Demanda, sin más citarle ni oírle. Expedido bajo mi firma y sello del Tribunal en Salinas, Puerto Rico, a 5 de marzo de 2019. Marisol Rosado Rodriguez, Secretaria. Brenda L. Ramos Pomales, Sec Auxiliar I.
Ia siguiente dirección electrónica: salvo que se presente por derecho propío, en cuyo caso deberá presentar su alegación responsiva en Ia secretarIa del tribunal. Este caso trata de sobre el incumplimiento del contrato otorgados entre las partes en relación con Ia compraventa del inmueble sito en el Cond. Astralis Residences & Club, Apt. 302, en Ia municipalidad do Carolina, Puerto Rico. Se le apercibe que, en caso de no comparecer en el término antes indicado, podrá dictarse Sentencia en Rebeldía en su contra, concediendo el remedlo solicitado en Ia demanda sin más citarle ni oírle. EXTENDIDO bajo ml firma y Sello del Tribunal, hoy dIa 10 de junio de 2020. Lcda. Marilyn Aponte, Secretaria Regional. Eliann Reyes Morales, Sec Auxiliar del Tribunal.
ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO DE PUERTO RICO TRIBUNAL DE PRIMERA INSTANCIA LEGAL NOTICE SALA SUPERIOR DE SAN ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO JUAN. DE PUERTO RICO TRIBUSANDRA NAL DE PRIMERA INSTANCIA RODRÍGUEZ MEDINA SALA DE CAROLINA. Demandante Vs.
YIMARIS RIVERA REVILLA Demandante VS.
JANET LAMBOY ROBLES, también conocida como JANET LAMBOY
Demandada CIVIL NUM.: CA2020CV00023. SOBRE: INCUMPLIMIENTO DE CONTRATO Y DAJOS Y PERJUICIOS. EMPLAZAMIENTO POR EDICTO. ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMERICA EL PRESIDENTE DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS EL ESTADO LIBRE ASOCIADO DE PUERTO RICO.
A: JANET LAMBOY ROBLES, t/c/c JANET LAMBOY o sea, Ia parte demandada arriba indicada.
POR LA PRESENTE se le notifica a Janet Lamboy Robles, t/c/c Janet Lamboy, que se ha presentado una demanda en Ia Sala de Carolina del Tribunal de Primera Instancia en su contra, copia do Ia cual Ie es servida conjuntamente con el presente emplazamiento. Se le emplaza y requiere a usted para que conteste Ia demanda dentro del término de treinta (30) días siguientes a Ia publicación de este Edicto, y deberá presentar su contestación a Ia demanda a través del Sistema Unificado de Manejo y Administración de Casos (SUMAC), al cual puede acceder utilizando
JOSÉ DAVID VÁZQUEZ
Demandado CIVIL NÚM.: SJ2019RF01411. SALÓN DE SESIONES 708. SOBRE: CUSTODIA. EMPLAZAMIENTO POR EDICTO.
A: SR. JOSÉ DAVID VÁZQUEZ
Por la presente se le emplaza y se le notifica que la parte demandante, Sandra Rodríguez Medina, ha presentado ante este Tribunal una Demanda en la cual se solicita el siguiente remedio en su contra: Custodia. Dentro del término de treinta (30) días desde la publicación del presente edicto usted, el demandado, deberá presentar ante este Tribunal original de su contestación a dicha demanda y notificar con copia de la misma a la parte demandante por conducto de la representación legal de dicha parte: Lcda. Rosaelena Suarez Sierra, Cond Metro Plaza Apt 1401, Calle Villamil 303, San Juan, PR 00907 Tel. 787-484-1188 Email. Rosaelena2005@gmail.com. Se le apercibe que, de no hacerlo, se le anotará la rebeldía y se podrá dictar sentencia en su contra, concediendo los remedios solicitados sin más citarle ni oírle. Expedido bajo mi firma y sello del Tribunal en San Juan, Puerto Rico, hoy 11 de marzo de 2020. Griselda Rodriguez Collado, Secretaria Regional. Norma Roche Rabell, Sec Auxiliar del Tribunal.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
MLB and union chiefs meet, and new plan offers hope of a season By TYLER KEPNER
fter weeks of acrimony and brinkmanship tactics that threatened to cancel the Major League Baseball season, Commissioner Rob Manfred said Wednesday that he had reached an understanding with Tony Clark, head of the players’ union, on a framework to play in 2020. Clark still must get the players’ approval to make the plan official, but Manfred said in a statement that he would encourage the league’s 30 teams to accept the terms. After requesting an in-person meeting, Manfred flew to Phoenix and held discussions with Clark for several hours Tuesday. “We left that meeting with a jointly developed framework that we agreed could form the basis of an agreement and [be] subject to conversations with our respective constituents,” Manfred said in a statement issued by MLB. “I summarized that framework numerous times in the meeting and sent Tony a written summary today.” A union official, who requested anonymity to discuss continuing negotiations, disagreed with Manfred’s depiction of the meeting, emphasizing that there had been no agreement and instead characterizing the structure as only a proposal. Clark was not available for comment, but the union’s official Twitter feed offered a terse summation: “Reports of an agreement are false.” In any case, this is, at least, Manfred’s preferred season outline. According to a person briefed on the details of the framework — who was not authorized to discuss it until it became official — the season would begin the week of July 19, with teams playing 60 regular-season games through Sept. 27. Players would get their full prorated salaries, upholding a provision from the two sides’ March agreement that the players had refused to concede. Until now, every proposal from the owners had included further pay cuts for players because the games would be staged without fans, at least initially. The owners had also been seeking to create another tier of the playoffs, which would bring in more revenue, but they needed the players’ approval. Manfred left the Phoenix meeting with the framework of a 16-team postseason field — by far the largest in MLB history. Eight teams, four from each league, qualified for the playoffs from 1995 through 2011, and 10 teams have made it annually since 2012, when wild-card games before the division series were introduced.
M.L.B. could return in July if a plan negotiated by Rob Manfred and Tony Clark is approved by the players’ union and team owners. The Phoenix plan also calls for a designated hitter to be used in all games through 2021, when the collective bargaining agreement expires. The DH — adopted by the American League in 1973 — has never been used in games between National League teams. Manfred and Clark focused on financial and structural issues at their meeting, with the understanding that the sides could soon complete the health and safety protocols for returning to play during the coronavirus pandemic. The league presented detailed health and safety protocols to the union in May — including social distancing in the dugout and a ban on spitting — but the players have not formally approved them. The intense bickering between the two sides — especially in the past several days — might make it difficult for fans to believe the sport will actually return until the first pitch is thrown. Manfred stretched the limits of credibility in recent days, flipping from a “100%” guarantee of a season last Wednesday to telling ESPN on Monday that he was “not confident” there would be a season at all. That doomsday scenario — sparked largely by the threat of a grievance by the pla-
yers’ union, which would waive that option if the new plan is ratified — elicited memories of the devastating strike of 1994, when the World Series was canceled and replacement players took the field the next spring training. It also underscored players’ deep distrust of Manfred and the owners and led Clark to issue a statement Monday evening saying that players were “disgusted.” Manfred has had an uneasy relationship with Clark, the former All-Star first baseman who succeeded Michael Weiner as the union’s executive director after Weiner died of brain cancer in 2013 at age 51. Manfred and Clark negotiated a collective bargaining agreement in 2015, but it was so favorable to the owners that players have adopted a more hard-line stance since, exasperating Manfred. Manfred’s willingness to travel to meet in person with Clark was clearly a positive step, the first tangible sign of healthy negotiating under the unusual circumstance of forging a partnership without in-person talks because of the pandemic. By squabbling for so long, baseball missed a chance to return on July 4 weekend, which would have fit with its self-image as a national pastime capable of helping lift the
spirits of a wounded nation. If the sides complete these negotiations, they might still have a chance, at least, to bring back the rhetoric. They received some additional urging Wednesday afternoon from a U.S. senator. “Just spoke with @MLB Commissioner,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) wrote on Twitter. “America really needs some unifying common experiences right now, not to distract us from our challenges, but to remind us of the things we have in common Baseball can help fill that void & I am cautiously optimistic we will #playball very soon.”
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
As other stars waver, Serena Williams says she’ll play in the US Open By CHRISTOPHER CLAREY
s the tennis tours laid out their road maps earlier this week for a return to play in August, Serena Williams confirmed her desire to be a major part of those comeback plans and to play in this year’s U.S. Open. “Ultimately I really cannot wait to return to New York and play,” she said Wednesday in a video message. “I feel like the USTA is going to do a really good job of ensuring everything is amazing and everything is perfect and everyone is safe.” Her announcement was welcome news for the Open, a Grand Slam that is unlikely to draw a full-strength field this year without spectators on site and with extraordinary health and safety measures because of the coronavirus pandemic. “I’ll certainly miss the fans; don’t get me wrong,” said Williams, still ranked No. 9 in singles at age 38. “Just being out there in the New York crowd, hearing everyone cheer — I’ll miss that, getting me through some of those tough matches.” Williams, of course, has not always heard cheers at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Her relationship with the tournament where she has won six of her 23 major singles titles has been full of soaring high notes but also discordant passages, like the rancorous 2018 singles final in which she lost to the upstart Naomi Osaka after clashing with the chair umpire, Carlos Ramos, and receiving three code violations. Williams’ announcement was a part of a U.S. Tennis Association videoconference Wednesday to formally announce plans for this year’s tournament, which has been confirmed to be held from Aug. 31 to Sept. 13 and is in undeniable need of star power. Roger Federer is out because of knee surgery, and the top two singles players on the men’s and women’s tours — Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Ashleigh Barty and Simona Halep — all have expressed initial reluctance to commit. “I would be surprised if it’s 100 percent,” Steve Simon, head of the WTA Tour, said of the women’s field. “I think their positions will evolve based on what’s happening in the world. Some will be comfortable with it; some will not. No one is forcing anyone to play.” But an aging Williams trying to tie Margaret Court’s record 24 Grand Slam singles titles remains an irresistible storyline at the U.S. Open. And the USTA’s
Serena Williams committed Wednesday to playing in the United States Open, a tournament that could be without some star power during the coronavirus pandemic. increasingly flexible approach to permitting players to travel to New York with more than one team member and stay in private housing has certainly made it easier to commit for Williams, who typically travels with her family, including her daughter, Olympia, and her staff. John Isner, the top-ranked American men’s player in singles at No. 21, also is intent on playing. “I think it’s important for sport to get back, and this is a good opportunity to get tennis back in the mainstream,” he said in a text message. Williams has played just two WTA tournaments since losing in last year’s U.S. Open final to another youngster, Bianca Andreescu of Canada. But Williams is back in training, and Stacey Allaster, the U.S. Open’s new tourna-
ment director, confirmed Wednesday that Williams had even had a court with the Open’s new hard-court surface constructed at her Florida home. A perquisite for a star? Certainly, but it is not unheard-of for leading players to train in private on a Grand Slam surface. Martina Hingis, the former No. 1, had a Rebound Ace hard-court installed at her home in Switzerland during her heyday to prepare for the Australian Open. The men’s and women’s tours have been on hiatus since mid-March because of the pandemic. Though tennis is particularly suited to social distancing with a net separating players, the global nature of the professional tours is a major obstacle. Though no schedule can be definite at this anxious stage, both tours announced their comeback plans
Wednesday. The women’s tour is set to resume Aug. 3 with a clay-court event in Palermo, Italy, followed by potential tournaments in Prague and Washington. Then it would continue to the doubleheader in New York with the transplanted Western & Southern Open preceding the U.S. Open from Aug. 21 to 28. The men’s tour would resume with the Citi Open in Washington on Aug. 14 with the New York doubleheader to follow. After the U.S. Open, both tours would head to Europe for the postponed clay-court season with combined events in Madrid and Rome and then the French Open, a Grand Slam tournament that was rescheduled from late May to Sept. 27 to Oct. 11.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Fans want sports. Sports want fans. But it’s not that simple. By JOHN BRANCH
s much of the nation emerges from the cultural hibernation caused by the coronavirus, with varying degrees of concern and glee, American sports are now thrusting themselves headlong into the recovery effort. It is not going particularly well. Despite the announced comeback plans of several major American sports leagues in the past days and weeks, there are no regular-season games on any public, revised schedules. There may be a lot of quarantining at single sites but no clue as to when teams might play again in home arenas and stadiums. There are no sturdy plans for having fans. Even in a best-case scenario — and 2020 is where best-case scenarios go to die — there will be nothing that resembles a normal game between now and September. “We have to get our sports back,” President Donald Trump said — in mid-April. Two months later, all American sports have are loose plans and good intentions. For weeks, Major League Baseball could not figure out how to play even a part of a season, creating the possibility that 2020 would be the first year without baseball in 150 years. The NBA wants to quarantine teams in Florida to finish a season in August and perform a two-month postseason beyond that, though some players are balking at such confinement, partly over racial unrest. The NHL has similar ideas for finishing a season that would have ended by now, in a normal year, but nothing is truly scheduled. In tennis, Wimbledon in late June and early July was wiped out. The U.S. Open in New York has vowed to start on time in late August, but some players do not want to go, raising questions about whether a fanless, star-depleted event is worth the effort. NFL teams are not sure about the start of training camps in July, and the NCAA has no cohesive plan and no real idea for what the seasons in college football or other sports might look like. The collective strategy is largely to cross fingers. “One of my takeaways from all this is that we don’t have uniform risk tolerance in this country,” University of Washington epidemiologist Steve Mooney said. “I have some fear that people who have a higher tolerance of risk than I do are making these decisions.” There are glints of optimism. Professional golf and NASCAR have returned,
though more as made-for-TV events than as anything resembling a collective experience. Fans, desperate to be entertained and discombobulated by the loss of traditional sports cycles, still do not know if there will be games or if they will be invited to attend them. And as they see clips of normal-seeming games from around the world — soccer in Europe, baseball in Asia, rugby in New Zealand — nothing feels normal at home. When England’s Premier League became the latest to return to the field Wednesday, with matches at home stadiums but without fans, even that modest reboot looked like a mirage from the American viewpoint. Messages are mixed. Commissioners unveil plans. Scientists inject reality. “The virus doesn’t watch football games,” said George Rutherford, a professor of epidemiology at the University of California, San Francisco. The risk-versus-reward equation has never been more fraught. More than 116,000 Americans have died from COVID-19, and 2 million have tested positive for the coronavirus in the United States. The country’s daily death toll was 800, on average, in the first half of June. Hopes that the virus would recede in the summer have been punctured by spikes in some parts of the country. The risk remains of exacerbating the spread of a highly contagious and deadly virus. The reward is entertainment, first on television, someday again in the bleachers and luxury boxes and sports bars. It is also economic. There are billions of dollars to be made and spent. “People who are not sports fans, I could see how they might question if it’s responsible to restart sports, especially when somebody isn’t allowed to restart their job,” said Dawn Comstock, a sports epidemiologist at the Colorado School of Public Health. She and others also wonder about the ethics of spending finite resources on sports — testing, especially — that might be used elsewhere. For now, it is mostly the professional leagues desperately trying to reboot, perhaps setting an example that will flow through colleges, high schools and youth sports. They are navigating those epic concerns while trying to appease their fans and finances, getting mired in politics, logistics and geography. Comstock said she believed rules could be put in place to make most
At MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, the lockdown offered a long window to swap out the playing surface. sports safe. Few are asking if those rules can be followed. She noted a high school baseball team in Iowa, kneeling shoulder to shoulder, without masks, during the national anthem Monday. She saw a girls’ soccer scrimmage at a park in Denver on Tuesday, the parents spread out but the substitutes on the sideline gathered close to the coach. And what of the high-five, the huddle, the mob after a goal or a game-winning home run? “It’s such a challenge, not just because of the virus, but how we play sports,” Comstock said. “The activities are so ingrained and part of the culture that even when the sport can be played safely, it’s not likely that the participant will be willing to adopt the guidelines needed to do that.” She laughed. “And that’s just the players,” she said. Putting people in the stands is riskier and more complicated. In a recent New York Times survey of more than 500 epidemiologists, 64 percent said they would wait a year or more before attending a sporting event, concert or play. It was a higher percentage than any other activity. “Not that I don’t love sporting events, but for me, the risk-reward ratio is wrong,” Mooney said. Rutherford, at UC-San Francisco, expects there will be major college football in the fall, partly because there is so much money at stake, and also some fans — spread out, masked, maybe even tested. “Ten, 12, 15,000 fans, mostly seasonticket holders? Yeah, that strikes me as doable,” he said. “Trying to fill up the Rose Bowl? That’s another issue.” Mooney is more pessimistic. Even classes on most campuses are not certain. “I think it’s unlikely that there will be
football games at UW in the fall,” he said of Washington, a member of the Pac-12 Conference. “I’d be pretty outraged if I need to teach my class remotely, but the football stadium is filled with people who intermingle.” Still, plans are emerging, clunkily. On Monday, the WNBA announced plans for a shortened, single-site season, beginning in July, though no schedule was released. The same day, MLB’s commissioner, Rob Manfred, said he was “not confident” that there would be a 2020 season, a week after saying “unequivocally” that he was “100%” sure there would be. The NBA’s plans to convene and quarantine at Disney World in July has met some resistance. Players worry about time secluded from family, and the racial turmoil and protests after the death of George Floyd have left some stars, including Dwight Howard and Kyrie Irving, questioning American priorities. “Basketball, or entertainment period, isn’t needed at this moment and will only be a distraction,” said Howard, a veteran now with the Los Angeles Lakers. A distraction is precisely the point, at least to some. Sports occupy an elevated place in American culture, and part of the mythology is that they are not just wanted, but needed, especially in times of crisis. That might be a reasonable argument after a terrorist attack or a natural disaster. But it is a thorny one during a pandemic. “We have an obligation to try this,” Adam Silver, commissioner of the NBA, told ESPN this week. “Because the alternative is to stay on the sideline. And the alternative is to, in essence, give in to this virus.” Never have American sports fans been left without teams to cheer for so long. Back in March, it was the decisive shutdown of the NBA, the halt of baseball’s spring training and the cancellation of the NCAA’s basketball tournaments that signaled the seriousness of the pandemic to many Americans. The anticipation was a short recess, maybe 30 days. Remember that? Three months later, with Americans looking for plenty of distraction and signals that everything will be OK, the message from sports is that we have no real idea of what the coming months will bring — or which games will be a part of them. The faded hopes of spring hopscotch into a summer of discontent, toward an ever-uncertain autumn.
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
How to Play:
Fill in the empty fields with the numbers from 1 through 9. Sudoku Rules: Every row must contain the numbers from 1 through 9 Every column must contain the numbers from 1 through 9 Every 3x3 square must contain the numbers from 1 through 9
Answers on page 30
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
(Mar 21-April 20)
Childhood memories are consuming you. There’s nothing wrong with looking back with fondness. After revisiting some happy times, you should bring your attention back to the current moment. That’s where your power lies. Take this opportunity to work more carefully on your plans for the future. Don’t tell anybody about where your train of thought is taking you. It will be much easier to meet your goal when nobody is monitoring your progress. Besides, it’s fun to operate by stealth. Mum’s the word.
(Sep 24-Oct 23)
It would be wise to change your approach to your employer. Although your boss has high regard for you, they won’t automatically grant you special favours. If you want extra time off, you must go through the proper channels to ask for it. Stepping up your fitness routine is strongly advised. By taking exercise on a regular basis, your stamina will increase. It doesn’t matter if you are stretching, lifting weights or jogging on the spot. Your regime will yield results.
(April 21-May 21)
(May 22-June 21)
(Nov 23-Dec 21)
(June 22-July 23)
(Dec 22-Jan 20)
A message could be blocked or a payment might be denied. If you’re working against the clock to hit a self-imposed deadline you can now settle down and approach things in a more leisurely fashion and double-check everything been done properly before moving on. You don’t want to get kicked out of line because of an oversight. Urging friends and relatives to be more assertive when it comes to health-related safeguards is critical to a community success. If you’re looking for a new source of income, apply for work at a former employer. You’ll take to these duties like a duck to water. It will be especially enjoyable making customers, patrons or patients more comfortable. You’ve got the human touch. A passionate romance makes you glow with happiness. Don’t be surprised when people ask if you’ve lost weight or have been to a spa. Take this opportunity to add some fashionable items to your wardrobe. You’ve changed your mind about the best way to lead your life. That’s completely fine. People are eternally growing and evolving. Now you have new priorities, you should do everything in your power to make art, acquire more skills and expand your knowledge. You’re caught between meeting your responsibilities and fulfilling your needs. It may be wise to satisfy yourself. Enjoy a nap, go for a walk or read a book for pleasure. You’ll feel so much better after you take a break.
(July 24-Aug 23)
Working behind the scenes will be a welcome relief from standing in the spotlight. Take this opportunity to catch up on background tasks. File paperwork, clear out clutter and submit applications. You’ll feel virtuous and productive afterwards. Before assuming fresh duties, enjoy an extended break. Someone who is captivated by your charm will start courting you. Being wanted and desired will make your confidence soar. It will give you the courage to realise a lofty goal you’ve had locked in your heart for years.
(Aug 24-Sep 23)
Reconnecting with an old friend will be illuminating. You’ve come a long way since this bond took root. Give yourself credit for having grown and changed. In the past, you were worried about being too soft and vulnerable. Slowly, you’ve become more receptive. A budding romance fills you with optimism. It’s so much fun waking up and anticipating a lively chat or text. Take your amour’s advice and launch a creative project that’s been preoccupying you. Express yourself.
(Oct 24-Nov 22)
Going through old photos will remind you of how you have grown since the old days. Give yourself credit for pushing the envelope. Thanks to your ability to push past your fears, you’ve realised some wonderful goals. Keep challenging yourself to do more. Your love life is sizzling with excitement. It’s so much fun to exchange enticing messages throughout the day. Are you single? You’ll meet someone special while taking an online course or attending a lecture. Send them a friendly private message later. Your romantic or business partner is making more money. As a result, your financial situation will improve. Go ahead and buy yourself some creature comforts that were previously beyond the scope of your budget. It’s a great time to buy furniture and artwork. If you’ve been thinking about relocating, you should get serious about the search process. Make a list of all the qualities you’d like your new home to have. The more vividly you picture such a place, the easier it will be to find. It’s time to renegotiate the terms of a deal that you made long ago. Things have changed radically since you first joined forces with a business partner. Be willing to ask for more pay and additional time off. You’ve earned greater rewards. Your personal charisma is powerful. Use it to promote your agenda. Schedule a business talk, talk to your loved ones or submit some written work for publication. Instead of resistance, you’ll encounter acceptance. It’s a refreshing change that’s long overdue.
(Jan 21-Feb 19)
Returning to a hobby you loved as a child will boost your spirits. Recently, you’ve been absorbed with mundane tasks that have sapped your creative energy. It’s time to change gear. Playing music, fixing gadgets or baking bread are all good possibilities. Making the most of a moneymaking opportunity will put a spring in your step and sparkle in your eyes. Earning a bigger salary will prompt you to take personal and more risks and chances. You might decide to start selling your handiwork.
(Feb 20-Mar 20)
A romantic interest from the past will resurface. Although it’s flattering to be contacted again, you’re not sure if you want to reunite. This relationship was too claustrophobic. If you’re going to thrive, you must be with someone who encourages your independence. A neighbour or relative could take you to task for a thoughtless remark. And while you may owe them a sincere apology, you shouldn’t have to dwell on this mistake. By taking steps to ensure this same slip won’t reoccur, you should be in the clear.
Answers to the Sudoku and Crossword on page 29
June 19-21, 2020
Frank & Ernest
Wizard of Id
For Better or for Worse
The San Juan Daily Star
The San Juan Daily Star
June 19-21, 2020
Caguas te quiere 15-19 de junio de 2020 | Boletín Informativo | Edición 10 Municipio Autónomo de Caguas
Lista de cotejo para reapertura de negocios
Caguas Temporada de Huracanes 2020
Ante la reapertura paulatina de la actividad económica, incluimos algunos puntos importantes que debes evaluar de tu negocio: ¿Revisaste las ayudas que provee el gobierno federal? ¿Solicitaste el PPP de SBA? Haz un análisis de tu flujo de caja Identifica diversas fuentes de apoyo ¿Analizaste la viabilidad de tu modelo de negocio a corto, mediano y largo plazo en tiempos de COVID 19? Capacítate, existen un sinnúmero de talleres en línea para aprender y reflexionar cómo puedes transformar tu negocio. ¿Revisaste los programas de apoyo del Municipio de Caguas? ¿Revisaste las distintas formas de acceso a capital? Participa de los talleres de capacitación virtual de PromoCaguas Explora cómo digitalizar tu negocio Sigue a PromoCaguas en Facebook y You Tube Encuentra más información, guías procesales, lo que debe incluir el Plan de Control de Exposición al COVID-19 y otros documentos importantes en www.caguas.gov.pr/coronavirus
Atención residentes de Caguas y comunidad en general
No se pierda el taller virtual:
“Prevención y preparación ante la temporada de huracanes en tiempos de pandemia” sábado, 27 de junio de 2020 10:00 a.m. Facebook Live y YouTube Live Panelistas: • Ernesto Morales - Director de Avisos Servicio Nacional de Meteorología • Miguel Neris - Director Oficina Municipal de Manejo de Emergencias (OMME), Municipio de Caguas • Zaid Díaz - Planificador Municipio Autónomo de Caguas Moderador • Roberto Cortés Reportero Ancla del Tiempo, Telemundo Puerto Rico
¡Nuevo! Directorio de Comercio Electrónico ¿Eres de Caguas y puedes ofrecer de Caguas: compraencaguaspr.com productos o servicios a través internet? Apoya losdel negocios
de la ciudad.
Si te perdiste algún tema de la serie de webinars Pulso Empresarial, puedes encontrarlos en el enlace: shorturl.at/lwHKO Además, suscríbete para que no te pierdas ninguno de nuestros webinars, FB Live u otro material de interés para el sector comercial de Caguas Orientación e información oficial sobre el manejo del coronavirus en Caguas: • caguas.gov.pr/coronavirus • Municipio Autónomo de Caguas Corporación SANOS
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Weekly Print Edition - The San Juan Daily Star