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Thursday

Dear Haiti,


Dear Haiti,

I write to you from my warm living room, flat screen on with nonsense on in the background for noise. If I glance to the right I can see my bedroom, 1 of the most inviting places I spend time. There's a dirty plate on the coffee table from the meal I just ate, courtesy of the regular paycheck that keeps my fridge full. There are no signs of debris here, no bandits hoping to relieve me of what little I've been able to accumulate.

Today I discussed your plight with my students. I was moved by some of their ability to recognize the health hazard in breathing the dust left behind by the debris; the unsettled feeling of living in a tent or hole; having parents without jobs, housing, viable possibilities. They were able to tell me that the collective conscience of Americans is to give of their things, hoping not to see the faces of those affected. My students felt like they'd missed the images--though I can't imagine how--of you being ravaged by the quake. By the end, watching videos & discussing what we'd seen, they were ready to come & dig you out, build you up, & assign all the orphans to me.

It's funny how "they" keep using the word rebuild when speaking of you. It suggests you'd ever had proper infrastructure. The same thing happened when your daughter, New Orleans, found itself deep under flood waters. I've lived there & know for certain that what existed there before was deplorable. The world has an opportunity now to do right by you both, & yet....

I'm not sure what else I can do personally. I refuse to send another dime to organizations with no public accountability. My little brother romanticizes about your rugged terrain & resilient spirit of your people. I romanticize about the day when you can raise your hand high & take credit for pulling yourself up by the proverbial bootstraps. I have faith that it'll happen. After all, we've gotten our 1st black president here...EVERYTHING is possible.

Love,

Ya Distant Relative

Watch me move.

2 comments:

  1. THEY have had it out for Haiti since Fancois Dominique Toussaint L'Ouverture and Frederick Douglass (look it up). The answer is much larger than just the Haitians picking up because it wasn't the Haitians destroying it (see: USA, France, capitalism, etc.) and I don't say that to be discouraging. In fact I say it hoping that it inspires more of us to pick up ourselves by the bootstraps and help more than just me, it must be US. "An injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Believe that.

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  2. Indeed.
    Colonialism is a helluva drug. Brown people around the world are so far removed from their culture & languages, etc, due to the greed of others. Haiti is prime for the picking, & I'm of the opinion that the Western world has been waiting for Haiti to present a real opening to take it over. Haiti is optimal for development in a way it has never been before, making it even easier for the country to be bought by the highest bidder. The idea of that is scary to me, sayeth she who has already got access to mostly stable infrastructure, public education, etc.

    The next few years will be interesting to witness to see if/how Haiti is purposefully developed or held down in the interest of others.

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