Opinion

Opinion – Haiti: A Hell in a Paradise Marked by Class Warfare

Mission and relief workers in Jacmel. Photo Credit: Breezy Baldwin

By Kervens Louissaint

There was a time when Haiti was called “the pearl of the Antilles,” where you could find tropical commodities such as cotton and cane-sugar.

At the time, Saint-Domingue was more or less the import industry of France.  African slaves on the island were mistreated by the French. Under their rule, slaves were subjected to lashes on the fields where they worked and regularly raped female slaves. It was during that period of suffering that the slaves became obsessed by the idea of freedom. Toussaint Louverture, Jean-Jacques Dessalines are some of the principal authors of the Haitian revolution. Although they did not have an arsenal of weapons to fight the French, their will of freedom allowed them to change the course of the country’s history with fire and blood.

However, after more than two centuries of independence, Haiti has not advanced one iota because the intellectual elite of the country can not invent a formula of life and political stability that is both viable and respectful of the Haitian concept of human rights — tout moun se moun (we are all people).

The Haitian bourgeoisie (pure oligarchy) control 95 percent of Haiti’s wealth. They believe they aren’t affected by far or near if the economy plummets. They clash with each other over the sole purpose of increasing their wealth. The conflict between this minority group evolves continuously as the country’s majority fights for basic rights. This fierce struggle highlights the question of color, “Nèg Anwo, Nèg Anba” (top man, and bottom man) and of class prejudice in Haiti, which is exacerbated by the international community that assists the elites in dividing and conquering the Haitian people. Is there a law that says black man must be below the mulatto?

In a country, where all the wealth of the country is owned by a minority, the vast majority of people suffer and drowns in poverty.  The country doesn’t produce anything, and the only products on the market are those owned by the bourgeoisie. They dominate almost everything, not to say everything in Haiti, water, electricity, food, etc … so what should surely be a majority that squats in misery do?

All Haitians, regardless of their social strata, should join together to eradicate political instability, economic inflation, and abject poverty from the country. We must agree to explore the potential capabilities of our youth, stimulate and energize the popular class to undo the irregularity of the Haitian economy and raise questions about the poor governance of the state.

It goes without saying, however that a cease-fire on the situation of  “Nèg Anwo, Nèg Anba” will persist, while invading our way of thinking, thus reverting us back to slavery. We are tired of listening to empty promises and verbal contest. In the end, hungry bellies have no ears.

Kervens Louissaint is a Haitian expatriate living in the United States. He attended Morning Star Christian Academy. Later on University of Quiskeya (UniQ), where he studied political science and international relations.


Haitian Times

Haitian Times

The Haitian Times was founded in 1999 as a weekly English language newspaper based in Brooklyn, NY.The newspaper is widely regarded as the most authoritative voice for Haitian Diaspora.
Haitian Times
Jun. 24, 2019

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