René Pérez from Calle 13 will be honored with the "Hispanic Heritage Award for Vision" at the 32nd Annual Hispanic Heritage Awards at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, on October 1, 2019.
According to a press release, " Residente will be recognized as a key representative of the many activist-artists and concerned citizens of Puerto Rico that came together by the thousands for peaceful protests to demand political reform. As an artist, he uses his work as a platform to inspire and empower social change, demanding attention for social injustices through rapping controversial lyrics and producing songs that energize peaceful action."
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Puerto Rico se unió como nunca, no quiero que este día termine. El agua de lluvia nos bendijo la historia que le contaremos a nuestros nietos. La sangre que nos corre por las venas aguantó el Sol del cañaveral bajo castigos que nos hacen fuertes hoy. En estos momentos Puerto Rico es otro, la gente quiere cambio, estamos cansados del abuso pero no nos cansaremos de luchar. 🇵🇷 [R] Puerto Rico is united like never before and I don’t want this day to end. The rainwater blessed us with a story that we will tell our grandchildren. The blood that runs through our veins is the same blood that endured the sun when we were slaves to sugarcane. That past endurance is what makes us strong today. I can tell that Puerto Rico is different after these days of protest. The people want change. We are tired of the abuse but we will not tire from the fight.
As of July 2019, the Latin rapper became the largest driving force behind the mass Puerto Rican protests that eventually led to the resignation of the Governor. Igniting the movement, he used his social platform to call out the corruption and peacefully unite all Puerto Ricans. Residente even collaborated with two other native artists, Bad Bunny and ILe, to produce the protest anthem- written and recorded in one day- called “Afilando los Cuchillos” (Sharpening the Knives). After twelve days of Residente leading tens of thousands of people to protests, historic achievement was made.
“The Hispanic Heritage Foundation is honored to recognize the tremendous impact of Residente as an artist but also as an activist,” said Jose Antonio Tijerino, President and CEO of HHF. “Residente has always taken seriously his responsibility to be a voice for those who need to be heard. He has had a vision for his work on the mic and in the community from Puerto Rico to the entire globe.”