The newest faces in our city are Puerto Rican. They have come in great numbers and settled primarily in the slum areas close to the Negro ghettos. Like the national groups preceding them they speak a foreign language; but unlike them they come as citizens—citizens whose economic and social assimilation into the city’s population is complicated by color.
Looking past the glass and stone palaces of our skyline, we see a curtain of separation rising like a fog. Only the experience of living can show us what it is like to be a Puerto Rican in New York, what it is like to be the victim of economic and social discrimination.
Who can erase memories of a deaf and dumb child with her mother and sister huddled in a small, dark room with an empty kerosene stove, the winter wind blowing in at them from broken window panes; a hall toilet broken and flooded where the bursting water pipe had covered the walls with an inch-thick coat of ice and to which the children of the f...
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