Emmet Montgomery Reily —- “Moncho Reyes”! Pres. Warren Harding to appoint him as Governor of Puerto Rico. Bad idea ….. the laughing stock!!
Emmet Montgomery Reily did not have much of a resume. He had been assistant postmaster of Kansas City, Missouri. But this was enough for Pres. Warren Harding to appoint him as Governor of Puerto Rico.
The trouble started almost immediately. Before he was even sworn in, Reily had already informed the insular press that:
- He was the boss now
- Puerto Rico must become a state
- Any Puerto Rican who opposed statehood was a professional agitator
- Thousands of Puerto Rican children were abandoned and roaming the streets
His inauguration speech went even further, with Reily proclaiming that:
- Puerto Rican flags were no longer permitted in Puerto Rico
- Any public employee who lacked “Americanism” would be fired
- Spanish would no longer be tolerated in the schools
In lengthy letters to Pres. Harding, Reily wrote: “Every Porto Rican politician carries a pistol,” and “Porto Ricans are children,” and “they cannot be trusted.”
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