Tuesday, November 22, 2005

In regards to the article in the NY Times... Rox speaks out

Today's headlines in local newspapers talk about the article written by Ginger Thompson in the NY Times titled "Immigrant Laborers From Haiti Are Paid With Abuse in the Dominican Republic."
I have many things to say about this article, but right now I haven't got the time to write a post about it. Nevertheless, Rox (yes, my buddy Rox), has written something about it and I wish to share it with you:

While it is true that a large number of the Haitians that labor in the Dominican Rep., live in infrahuman conditions in reference to the rest of the Western World, you have to also consider the fact that these conditions are better than the ones they have in Haiti and that is the real shame of the situation. While man has been on this planet, he has always taken advantage of the less fortunate ones throughout history, and that is the case of the Dominican Rep., where there are over 1.5 Million Haitians currently laboring, both legally and illegally and accounting for roughly 15% of the population inhabiting the Dominican side of the island.
In her article Miss Thompson names the inhuman treatment of 2,000 people forced to leave their houses and the death of 4 supposedly burned Haitians in Santo Domingo as major Human rights abuses, when we are talking of OVER 1.5 million people. While it’s true that the taking of one single life is one too many, it’s also true that the abuses she claims in her article are not that widespread or happen throughout the island on a regular basis. How is this different from the U.S. citizen’s stance in regards to cheap labor from foreigners when it affects their livelyhood? Riots, burnings, murders, immigrants living in subhuman conditions, racial profiling, and abuses in general have been committed in the U.S. and I’m only talking after slavery was abolished.
There are currently approximately 8.5 million Dominicans living in the Dominican Rep. and over 1.5 million living abroad, a great number as illegal aliens in the NY area, and living also in infrahuman conditions as per U.S. standards and being abused by their bosses, as Dominican bosses abuse of their Haitian workers, but I don’t see articles being written about this. Or the Jamaicans and Haitians workers that live in abominable conditions in the sugar cane mills of Southern Florida. Or the fact that even with the political prosecutions and human rights abuses in Haiti, Haitians citizens are not accorded the same treatment as Cubans when they reach the coast of Florida, but are rather sent back to Haiti or placed in temporary camps in Guantanamo. Why? Is it because they are darker than Cubans? I don’t know the answers to most of these questions, what I do know is that the Dominican Rep. is helping in solving part, albeit not with that intention, of the Haitian problem. A problem that the U.S., France, the U.N. and the rest of the industrialized nations of the world don’t want to face or have put in the backburner. It’s a lot easier to dump the problem in Haiti’s (POOR) neighbor and then claim abuse when the conditions the Haitians live in are not fit according to Western Standards.
I’m all for helping the needy and the poor, education, health and reforestation of Haiti should be priorities at this time, not only for Haiti, but to help the rest of the area, before this problem becomes really unsolvable. The real news from Haiti should be HOW ARE WE GOING TO HELP HAITIANS REBUILD THEIR COUNTRY? Not how laborers are abused in the Dominican Rep., because that headline is only addressing a very miniscule part of the problem that is not even at the root of the real problem. Because if the conditions were as bad all around as Miss Thompson claims in her article, then why do we have over 1.5 million Haitians living in our country? And why are they not back living in Haiti? Or is she implying that Haiti is inhabited by masochists that have nothing better to do than to go and suffer abuses in the Dominican Rep.
Let’s solve the Haitian situation by really helping the Haitians, not by stirring misguided accusations against a nation that faces the Haitian problem on a daily basis, as well as facing big internal problems of her own. Once and for all, LET’S HELP HAITI should be the headline we should all be reading in the NY Times.
Rosita Pimentel


Gabemaster said...

Muy bien escrito, tu amiga debe mandarle eso a letters to the editor del NY times. Seguro que lo publican. La situacion Haitiana del pais es un problema de muchas dimensiones que si, es verdad, es una responsabilidad de la comunidad internacional pero es lamentable e inexcusable que en muchas ocasiones los Haitianos los hacen los chivos espiatorios de los problemas del pais. Tampoco es justificable de que la respuesta dada cuando se questiona abusos cometidos contra ellos es que alla no es el unico pais donde suceden abusos. No estoy culpando a Rep.Dominicana pero ahi ke admitir los errores para poder evitar que se repitan. Anyway lo dejo ahi por ke sino esto se va a poner demasiado largo.
Cuidate Bracuta y me ubiera gustado ir a la reunion

yasmilka said...




yasmilka said...

very,very well written! te applaudo you everything in perspective for those que no saben na'!