UPDATE, June 20, 2015: The Daily News apologized via an editorial.
UPDATE, June 19, 2015: The NPRPD sent a letter to the Daily News, terminating its relationship with the newspaper.
Yesterday the chair of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade (NPRDP) wrote a letter to the CEO of the New York Daily News demanding that the newspaper issue a “an immediate, front-page apology” for publishing a photo and the headline “Rear view of the parade” of two scantily clad women who were not part of the parade or were at the parade. The paper’s caption suggested that the women were at the parade, when in fact they were in a another part of the city.
This is the full letter from Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez of the NPRDP to the newspaper’s CEO Mr. Bill Holiber:
This is the photo the paper published on Monday:
According to the parade’s website, there will be a demonstration later today in front of the Daily News.
Key Puerto Rican social media influencers and writers have begun to weigh in on the issue. This morning, Rich Villar (a Latino Rebels contributor) published an essay for Sofrito for Your Soul, where he stated the following:
Here’s a new narrative: educated Boricuas will fight you on your foolishness. Every time you dehumanize us, we will demand our humanity. Every time you force a negative image onto our social media feeds, we will respond with poems by Boricua poets. Every time you try to sell newspapers with controversial uses of our national flag, we will meet you outside your offices with that same flag flying. Did you know that it was illegal to own one in Puerto Rico until 1957? It’s a symbol of resistance. That’s why we fly it as much as we do. That’s why the parade exists. You could have read about it, if you didn’t know. Either way, you’re about to find out.
We’re demanding a full apology on the front page of your paper, hopefully one that is vetted more thoroughly than the photo you used to represent us last Monday. After that, we’ll talk about how you decide to cover us in the future. And we’ll decide how we’re going to cover you.
As of this posting, the newspaper has yet to respond to the NPRDP’s letter, but it has published reader opinions about the photo. In addition, it is important to note that some parade participants were scantily clad and were part of the parade, as this thumbnail image from the parade’s official site shows:
In addition, a social media viral video showing a model (who is allegedly not Puerto Rican)
painted in a Puerto Rican flag and collecting money to have pictures taken with her also occurred along the parade route. That individual was not associated at all with the official parade, and the parade board has yet to comment on this matter as well.