Some people has compared the situation of Puerto Rico with that of Greece vis a vis the European Union, or the city of Detroit, in the State of Michigan, in the United States.
The situations are not similar. Within the US Political System, Puerto Rico is not a mere city or territory under stress but another NATION subordinated to the Will and whims of Congress. That is colonialism of the worst kind. That is the source of the problem. What Puerto Rico needs is more sovereignty in order to have the tools needed to develop its own solution to its own difficulties. What we need, in Puerto Rico, is not more federal welfare, but more sovereignty.
Someone might say that integration into the Union via Federal Statehood would be the answer. That will certainly bring in more money, a.k.a. more welfare funds. Yet Statehood was not made for places like Puerto Rico. Sociologically, Historically Puerto Rico is a Nation, and not just a Latin or Caribbean nation. But a a transcendental nation whose spiritual roots go all the way back to the middle east.
Normal nations are born thru a historical process and derived their identity from that historical/sociological process. A transcendental nation has an added characteristic: its identity is not based on the past but in the future, in a sense of purpose or destiny that brings and keeps us together as a LIVING SENTIENT BEING.
A conventional nation may die and fade away if her historical/sociological reality changes. A transcendental nation will only pass away once its destiny or purpose is fulfilled.
Statehood would certainly bring a big historical/sociological change to Puerto Rico. But will not change the transcendental purpose. And that purpose lies outside of the United States, as a nation among free nations and not as a State bound into an indivisible Union.
To integrate Puerto Rico as the 51st State of the Union would be like swallowing a big, hard, sharp, pointed diamond, covered with milk chocolate. The United States has a big enough throat to do that. But once inside the sweat chocolate will melt away and the sharp diamond will just keep going toward the exit. Eventually it will get out and the rain will wash way any blood and feces that might have stuck to it.
So, facing the present COLONIAL crisis what Puerto Rico and the United States need to do is to design and implement a careful step by step program to guide PR toward National Sovereignty, a.k.a. Independence. That is in the best interest of BOTH nations.
The Colonial Status Quo is unstable; its economic model has come to an end. A move toward Statehood would be suicidal, for the USA not for PR; and to sell us, as a territorial possession to China or Germany would be unthinkable?!?! That would be like selling your backyard to the competition.
So come on, Uncle Sam. Do the sensible thing. You don't have the right to go around the world policing far away nations, but you do have the OBLIGATION to bring this shameful IMPERIALISTIC/colonial relationship to an end. You were the ones who invaded PR: uninvited, in 1898; imposed American Citizenship upon Puerto Ricans unilaterally in 1917, persecuted and jailed Pedro Albizu Campos the greatest nationalistic leader PR has ever had and then force Luis Munoz Marin, another pro-independence leader, to support and promote the present status. Then in 1952, you told the Puerto Rican people and the United Nations that you will promptly respond to any request of political development from PR. You have never done so. On the contrary thru the mechanism of the federal court you have undermined the fragile autonomy of the Commonwealth of PR reducing the Political Status of the Island to a colonial condition far worse than in 1952. So, for once,Uncle Sam, do the right thing.
What Puerto Rico needs from Washington is not a financial bail out but a open and official recognition of Puerto Rico's NATIONAL identity and need for National Sovereignty... before it becomes toooo late for both of our nations... to mend our relationship.