Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you have heard how President Trump described the country of Haiti and the continent of Africa. He refers to them as a “shithole”. Trump is 71 years old, was elected to the highest office in the USA, and is suppose to represent all of America. That is exactly how you are NOT suppose to conduct yourself as a president; you would think a person that old would have matured and realized that by now…I guess he does not care at all.
Now, lets get to the interesting part of Haiti being a “shithole”. On the surface, Haiti is recognized as the poorest country in the western hemisphere and has been plagued with natural disasters that has devastated that beautiful island. After their most disasterous earthquake which killed as much as 250,000 Haitians and wrecked their White House, it stalled the forward progress the country was making.
If you were uninformed, from 1791-1804 the Haitian Revolution occurred. This revolution stems from the need for Haitians to become free people. Slaves and free people of color in Haiti joined forces and revolted against Napoleon Bonapartes army at the Battle of Vertieres. After that success, on January 1, 1804 Haiti became the first black sovereign nation, they were lead by army leader Toussaint Louverture. This accomplishment was the first of its kind and based on that, America and many other countries did not want to trade with Haiti. To make matters worse, the French surrounded the island of Haiti and demanded they pay a debt or to prepare for another war. Haitians were already torn and worn from the battle they just won, so a rational choice was to pay the debt. The billions paid to France ($21 billion current estimation) were suppose to help fund Haitis infrastructure, education, and healthcare. The repayment hurt Haiti on such a large scale that there were a lack of public schools to educate even the poorest residents.
Now lets move on to the history that is not talked about, President Woodrow Wilson took $500, 000 out of the Haitian national bank for safe keeping and sent U.S Marines into Haiti, this began the 20 year occupation of Haiti by US forces. During that time the people of Haiti were murdered, intimidated, and even dealt arson. A dictator of Haiti, Francois Duvalier aka “Papa Doc” did not help the situation as he added destruction to the already destroyed country and Jean-Bertrand Aristide, one the most popular Haitian presidents added salt to an open wound. He was overthrown and exiled but eventually was able to return back home.
Haiti is a great country to visit and vacation, a quick google search will tell you that. The images that circulate around the news outlets portray it to be a “shithole” but it’s not. The only reason why those terrible parts exist are mainly due to countries not wanting to trade with Haiti, Haiti repaying debt, senseless killings by US marines, and dictatorship by a corrupt government. I just wanted to give you guys a brief look at the history of Haiti. Hope you learned something!