2015 was not an easy year to get through in many ways. A lot of troubling signs have appeared on the landscape: Continuing injustice toward people of color in the form of extra-judicial police killings of unarmed civilians, increasing wealth inequality, the Puerto Rico Debt Crisis, the continued threat of gentrification, out of control gun violence, and the unsolved problems of the continuing marginalization of non-mainstream races, ethnicities, gender preferences and gender identities are still present in unsettling ways.
Of course, there are so many efforts made by well-intentioned activists, artists, educators, and forward-thinking people of conscience. The special brand of optimism inspired by these efforts needs to be embraced and celebrated. Access to new digital forms of communication is still available, and although it needs to be strongly defended, the power of a new, relatively unfiltered set of media producers is one of the most important tools at our disposal.
I try to play a small part with my writing, so here is a look back on some of what I’ve published this year:
Closing Rikers: A Four-Part Series Investigating Whether Reforms or Closure Will Solve the Horrors of the Rikers Island Prison Complex (Cross-Published in City Limits and City & State)
Donald Trump Says He’s Not a Fan of Hitler, And What That Means for 2016
Is an Obama Donor Tying the President’s Hands on the Puerto Rico Debt Crisis?
Interview: Counterspin Invited Me on Their Show to Discuss Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis
Uber Uber Alles
How Hedge Funds and Vulture Funds Have Exploited Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis
The Roots of Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis and Why Austerity Won’t Work
Puerto Rico’s soaring cost of living, from giant electric bills to $5 cornflakes
Puerto Ricans Brace for Worst As Debt Crisis Intensifies
Puerto Rico in crisis: weighed down by $73bn debt as unemployment hits 14%
Puerto Rico’s Dance With Debt
Vox’s Matt Yglesias Erases History of US Intervention in Latin America
Radically Reshaping Latin@ America
A View on Cuba’s Opening From the De Facto U.S. Colony of Puerto Rico