Tag Archives: American Samoa


Trump, left, and Sharpton
Trump, left, and Sharpton

NEW YORK, New York (The Adobo Chronicles® ) – Earlier this week, the Rev. Al Sharpton declared that “people that were from Puerto Rico all would have to go back if their parents were undocumented.” In other words, Sharpton believes that Puerto Ricans are not  U.S. citizens.

Soon enough, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, while speaking to a group of investment bankers and hedge fund owners in New York City, allegedly declared that if elected, he will revoke the U.S. citizenship of all Puerto Ricans because they are “not part of the American race.”

While Trump mentioned only Puerto Rico, his campaign told reporters that he meant to say all citizens from the territories of the U.S., including Guam, American Samoa, U.S. Virgin Islands and Northern Mariana Islands.

“We don’t really need these non-Americans and I don’t need their votes to win the presidency,” Trump said.

People born in these five territories are automatically U.S. citizens. However, under the federal electoral college system, only those residing in one of the 50 states of the U.S., and the District of Columbia, are eligible to vote for U.S. president.

So while Trump was wrong to say that Puerto Rico and the other territories are not part of America, he was correct in saying he doesn’t need their votes because they can’t vote for president.


Photo source: asianjournal.com
Photo source: asianjournal.com

MANILA, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles ) – The government of the Philippines, following in the footseteps of American Samoa, is now requiring U.S. citizens visiting the country to obtain an entry visa.

Previously, Americans were allowed to visit the Philippines for tourism or business for 30 days without the need for an entry visa. But the Philippine government is fed up with the inequality and lack of reciprocity  between the U.S. and the Philippines in as far as travel is concerned.

The Philippines, despite being a former American colony, is not included in the list of participating countries under the U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Filipinos wanting to visit the U.S. for business or pleasure need to obtain a visa which is very hard to come by.

VWP is a program of the United States Government which allows citizens of specific countries to travel to the United States for tourism, business, or while in transit for up to 90 days without having to obtain a visa. The program applies to the 50 U.S. states as well as the U.S. territories of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands in the Caribbean, with limited application to other U.S. territories.

“An eye for an eye, a tooth for tooth,” President NoyNoy Aquino said as he signed an executive order revising the Philippines’ immigration policy as it relates to U.S. citizens.

The visa requirement for U.S. citizens visiting the country will be revoked as soon as the U.S. adds the Philippines to the list of countries under the VWP, Aquino said.

The visa requirement does not apply to U.S. military personnel assigned to the Philippines in connection with the Enhanced Defense Cooperative Agreement (EDCA) which gives the U.S. access to Philippine military bases and deploys military personnel to train Filipino soliders to be better equipped and prepared for combat against insurgents and aggressors.






The Rock, left, and The Governor
The Rock, left, and The Governor

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (The Adobo Chronicles) –  The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has just ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of birthright citizenship does not apply to island territories including American Samoa.

Agreeing with the Obama administration’s lawyers, the DC Circuit relied on and even expanded the scope of a set of racially-charged, Colonial-era cases that refer to “savages” and “alien races” to reach their decision.

The cited Insular Cases date back to the early 20th century when the US had just won the Spanish-American War and acquired Puerto Rico and the far-flung new territories of Guam and the Philippines. The US acquired American Samoa in two parts in 1900 and 1904 as part of its continued expansion. But American political leaders had a problem: They wanted the United States to become a colonial power, but they didn’t want to extend constitutional protections to the overwhelmingly nonwhite residents of the new territories. (As one of the friend-of-the-court brief in the current case notes, the Democratic Party’s official platform in 1900 argued that “the Filipinos cannot be citizens without endangering our civilization.”)

American Samoa is one of U.S. territories that also include Guam, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and Northern Marianas.

Reacting to the court decision, the American Samoa Fono, the territory’s legislature, unanimously passed an emergency bill requiring all visiting U.S. citizens to apply for an entry visa.  The bill was immediately signed by Governor Lolo Letalu Matalasi Moliga.

“If the U.S. doesn’t want us to be citizens, then we don’t want U.S. citizens to freely come and go on our beautiful islands,” Moliga said.

Related story: Philippines Now Requires Entry Visa For Americans Visiting The Country

Hollywood actor Dwayne Johnson, star of the new blockbuster movie ‘San Andreas,’ was scheduled to visit American Samoa over the weekend for some R & R, but had to cancel travel plans. Johnson, a U.S. citizen, is part Samoan. He said he is not upset about the new visa requirement. In fact, he is supportive of it, saying the issue “is not just about fairness or birthright citizenship; it is about U.S. colonial mentality that has no place in our modern society.”

You go, Rock!