"Shithole" Countries

"Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?" Trump reportedly asked referring to Haiti during a meeting with lawmakers over an immigration deal. Liberals and cable news have gone wild over Trump's vulgar offensive language. As usual, the faux outrage is over decorum rather than content. Trump refuses to use the political language designed and created to hide the pain and destruction that American imperialism is directly responsible for.

Yes, "Shithole" is a derogatory way to refer to a country ruled by criminals. A country where 80% of the population lives in poverty and 50% lives in extreme poverty. This is Haiti and whatever noun you choose to use to describe it, the country is a mess. If Haiti is a "shithole" as Trump contends, it is the direct result of America imperialism and European colonialism.

In 1697 France took control of Haiti. For 100 years, they used slave labor to plunder the island and extract as much wealth and resources as humanly possible. When France finally relinquished control over the island it was with an agreement that Haiti send 90 million francs a year in gold to France. An amount that equaled 80% of the Haitian annual budget. Whatever amount Haitians were extorted to pay, it had to have been worth it to rid themselves of the occupying force that enslaved them, whipped them, burned them, buried them alive and raped them for the last 100 years.

In the years that followed, Haiti lived with the constant threat of France reoccupying the island, along with an unjust economic system where 80% of the islands wealth was controlled by 200 European individuals. In 1915, in response to complaints from American banks who held Haitian debt, President Woodrow Wilson sent in the American military to violently occupy Haiti. (Must Read: The Long Legacy of Occupation in Haiti). Although America officially withdrew from the island in 1934, it continued to exert control and influence over the Haitian government. Hillary Clinton's state department used it's power to engage in undemocratic regime changes in Haiti and other Central American countries. (Hillary Clinton needs to answer for her actions in Honduras and Haiti).

It's better if you don't call Haiti a "shithole", because then you don't have to take responsibility for turning it into one. Trump's "shithole" comment is based more on his shallow blatant racism than anything else. He only wants white immigrants, but maybe if he (and the rest of us) learned more about why these "shithole" countries are the way they are and how America is responsible, he might be more sympathetic about allowing them into the country. Well maybe not him, but the rest of us could use a refresher course.


Popular Posts