• Local Haitian-American religious leader calls president's remarks ‘irresponsible'

    By: Deborah Horne

    Updated:

    The president's comments have outraged the local Haitian community. This comes on the 8th anniversary of the deadly earthquake that devastated Haiti.

    And that has made the president's comments all the harder for Haitian Americans to accept.

    A religious leader in the local community says he couldn't rest after hearing the president's words.

    "I feel it's not responsible for the president to talk like that," said Bishop Josue Jean-Pierre.   

    Sleep did not come easily to Bishop Jean-Pierre.  President Trump denounced with an expletive immigrants from his native Haiti, parts of Africa and El Salvador.  A U.S. citizen since 2000, Jean-Pierre called the president's comments demeaning.

    "That mean no value for those people come to this country," said Jean-Pierre.  "But we have doctor, Haitian, here.  We have lawyer, here, from Haiti."

    To be fair, this is the image most Americans have of Haiti: a poor country ravaged by natural disasters; her people struggling just to survive.  And that was reflected on our Facebook page. 

    Joshua Ivers posted: "If your country is lacking basic sanitation, clean drinking water and a functional sewage system then yes your country is a (expletive)! so either own that or fix it, but don't complain when people call it for what it is." And there was this from Alex Michaels, "Seriously tho, it's just a waste of money. We've given them 13.5 BILLION and they have nothing to show for it."

    But this is Haiti, too.  A beautiful Caribbean country whose citizens helped Americans fight for independence during the Revolutionary War.

    "Yes!" agreed Jean-Pierre.

    "They came over and they died?" he was asked.

    "Yes," he said. "But we never receive any part of America, what it can do for Haiti."

    Bishop Jean-Pierre says he plans to write his Rep. Adam Smith to demand Congress take action.

    And, being a religious man, he says he will pray. 

    He believes the president's words will one day haunt him.

     


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