- Kelcie Willis, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
The entire U.S. territory of Puerto Rico remains without power after Hurricane Maria led to heavy destruction across the island Sept. 20. In the wake of the damage, three musicians with Puerto Rican heritage are calling for others to donate to relief efforts.
Puerto Rican singer rapper Daddy Yankee appeared on CNN Monday morning to talk about the devastation on the island where he still lives and was born and raised.
“A lot of people don’t know I’m from Puerto Rico,” he said. “I have my family there, I have my wife, my daughter, and I live there still ... and we really need your help.”
The musician, whose birth name is Ramón Luis Ayala Rodríguez, said people on the island continue to struggle and called for the government to step in to help.
“A lot of people don't know Puerto Ricans are American citizens ... we need the federal money for the citizens and for the government to help the locals.
“I know a lot of people are struggling. There’s no communication, no power on the island, the hospitals are not working,” he said. “We need the government to be more proactive.”
For his part, Yankee has donated $100,000 to Feed America and another $100,000 to the Red Cross. He said he has $1 million he plans to donate to various areas as the island begins to recover. Yankee has also asked that his fans donate insect repellent, water and batteries. He plans to personally take the items to the island.
On Sunday, Jennifer Lopez announced during a joint news conference with New York Gov. Chris Cuomo that she was making a $1 million donation from the proceeds from her Las Vegas residency show to aid the island.
“Given the loss and devastation we need to pay attention and to urgently support the Caribbean with donations and contributions,” Lopez said at the news conference. She went on to say her boyfriend and former New York Yankees player Alex Rodriguez would be working to get support as well.
“Alex Rodriguez and I, who are both New Yorkers, are using all our resources and relationships in entertainment, sports and business to garner support for Puerto Rico and the Caribbean,” she said.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Lopez and her ex-husband, musician Marc Anthony, will also work to get aid to as many in the Caribbean and Mexico as possible, reaching out to more than 30 artists and athletes.
In a tweet Monday, Anthony had more pointed words than Rodríguez as President Donald Trump continues to speak out against NFL protests.
“Mr. President shut the (expletive) up about NFL. Do something about our people in need in Puerto Rico,” he tweeted. “We are American citizens too,” he tweeted.
On Sunday, Anthony, like Lopez, delivered a video message saying help is on the way to Puerto Rico and encouraging those affected to “stay strong.”
Lopez and Anthony have asked the public to donate to United for Puerto Rico, an initiative from Beatriz Rosselló, the first lady of Puerto Rico.
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