Juan González, from Democracy Now! (@juangon68), breaks down the history of the Puerto Rican debt crisis, and what it means for the U.S. mainland.
JUAN GONZÁLEZ’ BIOGRAPHY
During a career that has spanned more than 35 years, Juan Gonzalez has emerged as one of the country’s best-known Latino journalists.
He has been a staff columnist for New York’s Daily News since 1987, and a co-host since 1996 of Democracy Now, a daily morning news show that airs on more than 1,200 community and public radio and television stations across the US and Latin America. His investigative reports on urban policy, the environment, race relations, the labor movement and US relations with Latin America have garnered numerous accolades, including two George Polk Awards for commentary and lifetime achievement awards from the National Hispanic Heritage Foundation and the National Council of La Raza.
His critically-acclaimed book Harvest of Empire: A History of Latinos in America, has been required reading for years in college courses across the country, and a documentary film based on it was released in 2012. Gonzalez has also authored three other books, including News for All the People: The Epic Story of Race and the American Media and Fallout: The Environmental Consequences of the World Trade Center Collapse.
One of the original founders of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ), Gonzalez served as the group’s president from 2002-2004 and was named to its Hall of Fame in 2008. During his time as NAHJ president, he spearheaded a nationwide effort by professional journalists to challenge the Federal Communications Commission’s dismantling of media ownership regulations, and was an early advocate of Net Neutrality, the principle of non-discrimination by Internet service providers over all data.
Even before he entered journalism, Gonzalez distinguished himself as a leader of the Young Lords, a militant civil rights organization of the late 1960s, and later of the National Congress for Puerto Rican Rights. Born in Ponce, Puerto Rico, he was raised in East Harlem and Brooklyn, New York. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Columbia University and has been a visiting professor in public policy at Brooklyn College.