The article by Ralph Ellis “Puerto Ricans fire back at Trump for critical tweets” reviews the recent crisis in Puerto Rico and the President’s response to it. The article was published in CNN, which is among the key news sites used by the American public to obtain information on current events. The audience of the piece is thus varied and consists of people of various ages and occupations who are interested in news on public matters. The primary purpose of the article is to outline the responses to Trump’s posts on social media criticizing the relief efforts undertaken by the Puerto Rican officials.
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Ellis explains that the conflict between the President and the San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz was initiated by the call for more aid from the U.S. government. In her speech, Cruz stated that the people of Puerto Rico are on the verge of dying and begged the U.S. government agencies to send more help. She has also criticized the current scope of the government’s involvement in the relief efforts in Puerto Rico (Ellis).
The statement provoked a series of tweets made by President Trump, expressing skepticism and disapproval of the Puerto Rican officials and their calls for more aid. In particular, the President wrote that the leaders of Puerto Rico “want everything to be done for them when it should be a community effort” (Ellis). The tweets led to an outrage among the Democratic leaders and the public, including the residents of Puerto Rico. In particular, people involved in the recovery efforts voiced their support of the mayor and criticized the President for his tweets.
There are three main lessons that can be learned from the event. First of all, it is crucial for the government to establish a thorough involvement in disaster relief and to inform the public of the efforts in an official manner. This would have helped to ensure that the people are aware of the U.S. government’s participation in emergency management efforts, thus reducing public outrage. Secondly, the leaders have to ensure responsible use of social media and effective communication in the aftermath of a crisis.
Refraining from posting critical responses to the Mayor’s call for aid could have prevented the conflict. Lastly, it is necessary to ensure that the help provided by government agencies is sufficient to address the needs of the population in crisis. At the time of the event, only 5% of electricity, 33% of the telecommunications infrastructure, and 50% of water resources had been restored in Puerto Rico (Ellis). Providing enough aid to speed up the recovery process would have assisted the government in maintaining a positive image.
Overall, the article exemplifies all of the Unit objectives by providing an example of incorrect reaction to a major crisis. As evident from the article, insufficient disaster management can damage the leader’s reputation and lead to a public outrage. Efficient communication, on the other hand, can help the government and public safety organizations to maintain a positive image and be more effective in helping those affected by the disaster.
Lastly, the article also shows the importance of the responsible use of social media by leaders and officials. Social media platforms are a critical source of information for many people; controversial posts or responses can damage the reputation of the leader, thus affecting politics and public opinion.
Ellis, Ralph. “Puerto Ricans Fire Back at Trump for Critical Tweets.” CNN. 2017. Web.