"And you know, Christy, something happened a long time ago in
, and people might not want to talk about it. They were under the heel of the French, you know, Napoleon III and whatever, and they got together and swore a pact to the devil. ‘They said, we will serve you, if you get us free from the French.’ True story. And so the devil said, ‘OK, it’s a deal.’ And they kicked the French out, the Haitians revolted and got themselves free, and ever since they have been cursed by one thing after the other, desperately poor. That Haiti is one island cut down the middle. On the one side is Islandof Hispaniola Haitiis the . Dominican Republic is prosperous, healthy, full of resorts, etc. Dominican Republic is in desperate poverty, same islands. They need to have, and we need to pray for them, a great turning to God. And out of this tragedy, I’m optimistic something good may come, but right now we’re helping the suffering people, and the suffering is unimaginable." (source) Haiti
I want to share a little bit about
. Haiti is a richly historic land. It is the land of the most successful slave rebellion in history, which led in that nation's becoming the 2nd independent nation in the Western Hemisphere, and the 1st black governed republic. Haiti
Yeah - it's a full study - and you can look more into it if you like... (source).
All of this I share with you for this reason.............I live in the
Now back to Pat's statement -we are so focused on the beginning that we didn't see the end, so let me dissect it. What Pat Robertson said is indented and italicized. The rest is all me, baby....:
And they kicked the French out, the Haitians revolted and got themselves free,
and ever since they have been cursed by one thing after the other, desperately poor.
the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere with 80% of the population living below the poverty line, and it is 50% poorer than
is one island cut down the middle. On the one side is Islandof Hispaniola Haiti; on the other side is the . Dominican Republic is prosperous, healthy, full of resorts, etc." Dominican Republic
remained under Spanish control until 1697 when the western third of the island became a French possession. (In 1804, the western part of the island became the Republic of Haiti.) This area, which the French called "Saint Domingue" , gaining independence on February 27, 1844 (from Haiti) was the richest colony in the world thanks to large sugar plantations which were worked by hundreds of thousands of slaves imported from Africa. In 1791 a slave revolt broke out in Saint Domingue. The island of Hispaniola has adopted a liberal economic model, which has made it the second largest economy in the region. Though long known for sugar production, the economy is now dominated by services.The country's economic progress is exemplified by its advanced telecommunication system.Nevertheless, unemployment, government corruption, and inconsistent electric service remain major Dominican problems. According to the CIA Factbook "The country suffers from marked income inequality" and has a Gini coefficient for income distribution of 49.9. (The Gini coefficient is commonly used as a measure of inequality in resources or wealth) Both sources can be accessed by clicking on links (Wikipedia and Dominican Republic Tourism) Dominican Republic
I quote these sources to say - yes,
is rich but not without problems, so did somebody over there sell something, too, Pat? Dominican Republic is not the shining example of the half of Hispaniola that said 'no, we won't enter the pact with the devil, we will serve GOD...no, that is not what happened, and therefore, not the reason the Dominican Republic is rich...the deductive reasoning doesn't flow and is misleading in Pat's statement. Dominican Republic
Haiti is in desperate poverty, same islands.
And it is 50% poorer than
, the closest country. The price of rice, where it can be found, increased from $180 to $200. Pat is right. Haiti is poor. Poor the way we were poor growing up, but didn't know it. Okay, I know I am tripping here, because we owned our home, but still - we struggled while my parents were making a come up, we lived modestly, we played out back in real dirt and grass and water, and we didn't know what we didn't have. By some people's standards, we may have been perceived as poor. But we lived in the old Mt. Vernon - all black owned businesses, banks, homes; all black produced goods, arts; all of my sisters teachers were black and my pre-k teacher was black - she looked just like me - and it was all good until the government (French folk, Sister Haiti) came in and saw that it was good......and told us we were poor and underprivileged and disrupted and tore up our community, and wrapped it in so much red tape it takes 10+ years to restore one landmark, dear Lincoln Theatre...(this is me, stepping down off the soapbox) Nicaragua
"They need to have, and we need to pray for them, a great turning to God. And out of this tragedy, I’m optimistic something good may come, but right now we’re helping the suffering people, and the suffering is unimaginable."
In that last end, I do not disagree with Pat -
needs to have a great turning of God and we need to be praying all on one accord. I do not find what he said to be horrendous. He actually stated fact that is historical - he read it somewhere. He didn't make it up. He added his own thought, just as I did. Some valid, some not - saying that the Haiti is rich because they did NOT make a pact with the devil is pure idiocy. Dominican Republic
And finally, I go back to this part of Pat's paraphrased description of what the mysterious 'they' who represent all of
at the time of the pact making said: Haiti
"They said, we will serve you, if you get us free from the French."
This 'they' was in such oppression, suppression, depression....(was the richest colony in the world thanks to large sugar plantations which were worked by hundreds of thousands of slaves imported from Africa)...and the conditions were such that 'they' would make a pact with the devil just to be free of this misery, who would say - which one is the greater evil, and look upon the head of hell and say 'give us free'?
My daughter and I watched the world news together with my Mom this morning, which is part of the reason I couldn't continue to keep silent. She said to me,
"Mom, I texted Yele on my cell phone to donate $10. I had to do it. Can you see the Mother's sitting next to their baby's, dead? A 12-year old girl gave the report from her viewpoint, and she was just like me. She said she doesn't want to leave Haiti. It is her home and a beautiful land, and she loves it."
My daughter has the heart of a missionary, and the wisdom of her own ancestors, including her Grandmother Mary, C.M.E. Missionary President, and her Grandfather the late Rev. Theodore Sanders, who never mistook the value of any human, young or old, but welcomed all, from the youngest to the poorest; from the gangsta to the junior pastor.
She has a discerning eye, as well as a Spirit. I could not deny that she had done the right thing. I just explained to her to check with me first the next time, because I already donated on our behalf and I went on and paid the cell phone bill today. I reminded myself to discuss it with my children when I donate funds, time and energy as well, and let them be a part of the experience.
When someone makes a statement in national media, like Pat Robertson did, and others as well, let's examine the statement, and have something solid to say about it, before we cry foul - so we can back up the cry.
Today, I cry out to God for the people of
- then and now. I know He is able, and I say 'Abba, Father' Haiti