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Lin-Manuel Miranda praises generosity for Puerto Rico, calls for debt forgiveness

by Yelena Dzhanova /

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In an interview on MSNBC Sunday, “Hamilton” creator Lin-Manuel Miranda lauded 'the generosity of Americans" in response to the devastation unleashed on Puerto Rico by Hurricane Maria.

"If there is a silver lining to reminding all Americans that [Puerto Ricans] are American citizens — and I have to say, the generosity of Americans has been incredible. It’s an ongoing 'It’s a Wonderful Life,'" he said, referencing the famous Frank Capra/Jimmy Stewart movie. "[I’ve seen] 150 donors in all 50 states in 23 different countries. So my faith in the country is undiminished.”

Miranda, who was born in New York to Puerto Rican parents, says that he will take “Hamilton” to San Juan for a three-week run in January to raise money for relief efforts — and he will once again play the title role.

Miranda has been advocating for more aid to Puerto Rico in the wake of Maria. He has made several visits to the island in conjunction with the Hispanic Federation, a nonprofit organization founded by his father that doled out $100,000 to each of seven nonprofit organizations that aid in relief efforts. Miranda is also calling for debt forgiveness for all of Puerto Rico.

“There’s no way to pay that debt back particularly in the wake of this hurricane,” he said. “Puerto Ricans work hard and if given a fair shot, they’ll come back and we’ll rebuild our island but we haven’t gotten our fair shot yet.”

Until the premiere of his hit musical in Puerto Rico, “Hamilton” will be on tour in London. Miranda said in the interview that he is often approached by people who ask if London is a good step since citizens there may not know American history well.

“I tell them, 'I don’t think Americans know their history,'” he said.

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