Clemente wrote:So I see bias and desinformation on the Guy's report.
The Guy's report????
Thank you for the advance billing! I'll start working on it.
But you see, my dear Clemente, on this board we keep our eyes wide-open. We have never
preached hatred for the Dominican people. Yes, we are sensitive to the fact that "antihaitianismo" is alive and well in the Dominican Republic. No one seems more aware of it than many of my Dominican friends (like Mark T., Alba M., Kaity T.) and so many others in Brooklyn, NY and in New Jersey who continually protest the unfair treatment reserved for Haitian laborers and generations of Haitian migrants by the rich/manipulative/exploitative class and the poor/manipulated/exploited classes of Dominican society. My Dominican friends are not afraid to identify themselves as BLACK (not "indios" and other race-concealing names). They join Haitians hand in hand often weekly (and so for many years) to protest in front of the Dominican Consulate in Times Square, NY. They acknowledge the fact that we are TWO countries but ONE people, whose DNA lineage points mostly to Africa (and not Spain or other mostly white European countries). They are ashamed of the fact that many Haitians are routinely abused or killed indiscriminately in the most vicious cases of antihaitianismo which manifests itself on a daily basis
in the Dominican press, TV, radio and cyberspace. My Dominican friends, brothers and sisters, want to put an end to the seemingly unending pattern of anti-Haitian prejudices that permeate deeply all institutions in the Dominican Republic, including the government, the judicial system, and the hierarchy of the Catholic Church.
We have never set out to demonstrate that all Dominicans are bad and all Haitians are good. That would be juvenile or downright stupid. That would be insulting to our Dominican allies. That would be equally insulting to the children of many "mixed marriage" families between Haitians and Dominicans, of which I personally know many. And did I say that this would be stupid??? As Barb pointed out "Acting like a thug has never struck me as being a unique characteristic of any particular nationality." This would be the equivalent of hating all Caucasians (including our dear Ann Pale friend, Barb) for the racism of some. On the other hand, would either Barb or I be so foolish to pretend that African-Americans have not been victimized by racism?
One fact remains in all of this: in Haitian society, anti-dominican feelings are sparse. In spite of "1937", growing up I was never raised to hate the Dominican side. Hate the sin, love the sinner: that's perhaps why many Haitian appear to be enamored of their basket-head per excellence, Jean-Claude Duvalier, in spite of the fact that he handsomely profited from the illicit trade of Haitian laborers to the Dominican Republic, and that Trujillo is often talked about as the "dictateur éclairé", a man who for all his madness put the progress of his country and the advance of his countrymen first. I have never heard of Jewish people praising the qualities of Adolf Hitler in any respect whatsoever. But Haitian people are the more forgiving kind. Instead of preaching eternal repudiation of Trujillo, they outdo themselves in lavishing praise on the generalissimo for the infrastructure that he bequeathed to his countryman, as opposed let's say to the impoverishment of François Duvalier's tyrannic years. Technically, they are right. But, emotionally, how can we bring ourselves to admire Rafael Trujillo, when the Jewish people have never seen any virtue in Adolf Hitler? Is it because Trujillo is really one of our own, which makes the genocide even more puzzling? As I am sure you know, Trujillo was partly Haitian, because his grandmother was a Haitian woman, born of Haitian parents in the geographical center of the Republic of Haiti. As great a country-first development planner he may have been, he was also consumed by self-hatred, which unfortunately seems to define so many Dominicans today: the hate of being Black (visibly so), the hate of carrying Haitian DNA which very, very few Dominicans could possibly escape, on any historical or scientific basis.
Even you, my dear Clemente.
[... and No, it's not a question of giving to the Red Cross! It is honorable to give to the Red Cross, but that does not wash the sins of hatred.]
You give us examples of successful Dominican women in the beauty parlor business in Port-au-Prince. I am elated to hear it. This should be publicized more, because up to now, the prejudice has been strongest that the most refined export of the Dominican Republic to Haiti and the Caribbean and European countries has been her sex workers. I always found that notion degrading, in spite of the fact that, while growing up, I have often heard Haitian men speak obligingly of the unsurpassed sexual expertise of Dominican sex workers in one bordello or another. Sure, I would think, Dominican women may place more cultural emphasis on looking sexy, dressing sexy, dancing sexy, acting sexy, than their Haitian counterparts, but what on earth would give them the gift of being better in bed between four walls, in the intimacy of a bedroom even if a public one? I have refused to subscribe to that belief, preferring to believe that all races have equal attributes in that regard.
But if Dominican women are successful businesswomen in Haiti, in beauty parlors or whatever, and assuming that Dominican men could be just as successful, does not this make the point that there is virtually no anti-dominican sentiment in Haiti? In fact, "antidominicanismo" is not a word in anyone's vocabulary. For every successful Dominican business in Haiti, I would like you to give me an example or two of a successful Haitian business in the Dominican Republic. Then and only then, would your argument that Dominicans make better neighbors than Haitians begin to deserve some consideration. At this time, you seem to be working to convince us otherwise... It's working.
Dear Clemente, did you ever ask yourself what would happen to the Dominican economy if all Haitian workers were to withdraw from your borders?
You have the stronger economy. That's why Haitians go there. Puerto-Rico has a stronger economy than the Dominican Republic. That's why Dominicans go there. The U.S. mainland has a stronger economy than Puerto-Rico. That's why Puerto-Ricans come here. Haiti has the poorest economy of all Caribbean countries. That's why Haitians go not only to the Dominican Republic but also to Jamaica, to the Bahamas, to Martinique and Guadeloupe, to Turks and Caicos, to Florida and everywhere else they can land, including Alaska (many Haitians worked on the Alaskan pipeline). We are industrious people. The only thing is, our various governments have not been keen on creating jobs and a wealth-sustaining economy for all the people. Now, there are various reasons for that. But if perchance the Haitian economy rebounded to the point of surpassing the Dominican economy, what would happen? Not only would Haitian people return voluntarily to Haiti, but a lot of Dominicans would be migrating to Haiti as well.
My dear Clemente, you may post another 5,000 Dominican press articles on this board to show that Haitians are bad neighbors (I will delete most of them, not because I wish to edit your views__they are very useful to me__but because you have abused your posting privileges before and are on the brink of doing so again). I do issue a unique Ann Pale invitation to you, however, and as many of your Dominican friends as you like: stop posting Dominican press articles in Spanish, which make this board appear even more cacophonous than seems to be its nature, but do come and present your arguments and grievances, like everyone else (that is, in your own words). We'll be happy to embrace your progressive ideas when you are ready to formulate some. We'll be waiting.
End of the Guy's report, Vol. 1 No. 1, September 15 2008