Haiti and Manmade Crisis


Haiti is a sovereign Caribbean nation, and neighbors with the Dominican Republic. You can specifically pinpoint when Hispaniola's peace has been disrupted. Ciboney and Taíno (Arawak-speaking) chiefdoms were the Indigenous residents here before Christopher Columbus' arrival (1492). Note: Nitaínos pre-dates our contemporary understanding, also referred to their individual provinces and each regional group (Caciques and Cemí Idols, pg. 7).

Such nuance did not matter for the Crown of Castile in Spain, so modern-day Boriken and Hispaniola descendants claim this re-constructed identity: Taino. Columbus' role is certain.

He ordered construction over Marien cacicazgo (territory), spread smallpox among Native communities with full awareness. His cruel legacy affects Hispaniola 500 years later and we cannot ignore U.S. replication of older imperialism. How did Texas' horror happen? There is no excuse for Border Patrol's violent actions, only context.

A hotel stands where Spaniards massacred hundreds and conquered cities to amass labor, local resources: Xaragua. Haiti fights to retain vital elements from this pre-European invasion era. Firsthands accounts tell us that "when any of those Indians, that survived these Barbarous Massacres, betook themselves to an Isle eight miles distant, to escape their Butcheries, they were then committed to servitude during Life" (A Brief Account of the Destruction of the Indies). You might also read Native American Genocide.

France and Spain parceled Indigenous Haitian land for settlers, plus international trade. Africa became a hub for more enslaved workers as Haiti forcibly grew into a national plantation ground. Oppression under encomienda and racist rule would last for three centuries (1504-1804). Remember 1804: the year when Haiti emerged underneath inhumane conditions—the only successful revolutionaries against colonialism/slavery.



Foreign influence repeatedly threatened Haitian freedom from the beginning. We are talking about a 19-year occupation by U.S. government [1915-1934] which supervised dictators, reinstatement of racial discrimination and rewritten constitution. The State Department archived it for public viewing here.

Haiti's bloody struggle worsened as 1934 through 1986 brought Duvalier's autocratic regime and disenfranchised them quickly. Anyone surprised about President Jovenel had unfortunately not seen the mounting signs. Revolt is Hayti history. There are leftist initiatives to unite voices and remove undue agents in Haitian governance. What can we do?


President Biden sent three expulsion flights back on Monday, September 20th. He is monitoring the immigration between each country. He has power to effectively advocate for peaceful action, especially now as Border Patrol officials hurt asylum seekers. Multiple government representatives have urged him to reconsider. Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley is one.

"The Biden Admin. must lead with compassion in this moment in order to support the Haitian Diaspora—that means halting the unjust deportations of Haitians seeking asylum." Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is another lawmaker who's disturbed at our reality.

"...All migrants seeking asylum must be treated in accordance with the law and with basic decency. Any acts of aggression or violence cannot be tolerated and must be investigated. The situation facing Haitian migrants at the border is heartbreaking, and Congress will continue to closely monitor developments.” (Speaker Pelosi's Statement, 9/20)

Nicole Phillips is flabbergasted as a legal director for Haitian rights. "I can’t think of a worse way of handling the situation. The situation in Del Rio is a humanitarian crisis that was avoidable." (The Intercept) One fix could be more accessible asylum processes at U.S. ports. This is a compelling excerpt from her organization, The Haitian Bridge Alliance and UnDocuBlack Network's recent letter.

"Dear President Biden, Secretary Mayorkas, Amb. Rice, Advisor Sullivan and Secretary Blinken: The undersigned 134 human rights, humanitarian, immigration and women’s rights organizations come to you in great fear for the people of Haiti after the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse and serious injury of the first lady, Martine Moïse, at home in the middle of the night. Armed gangs control many streets and have been kidnapping civilians, including school children and church pastors in the middle of their services.

Now, experts warn that the political vacuum left by President Moise’s assassination could exacerbate the current cycle of violence in Haiti. At this time of great political and social uncertainty, it would be unconscionable and unlawful for the United States to refuse the entry of Haitians seeking protection at the U.S. border or to pursue removal proceedings, detention, deportation or expulsion of any Haitian nationals to conditions that can only be described as dangerous.

The Biden Administration publicly acknowledged the political turmoil and violence overtaking life in Haiti and rightfully redesignated Haiti for temporary protected status (TPS) on May 22, 2021 for an 18-month period. As DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in his TPS announcement, Haiti is currently experiencing serious security concerns, social unrest, an increase in human rights abuses, crippling poverty, and lack of basic resources, which are exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

After careful consideration, we determined that we must do what we can to support Haitian nationals in the United States until conditions in Haiti improve so they may safely return home. We are grateful that the Administration took this step as it may provide protection to over one hundred thousand Haitians and their U.S. family members living here, but eligible Haitians still await publication in the Federal Register so that they can apply for TPS.

A coherent domestic and foreign policy agenda with Haiti is crucial to ensuring that the rights and protection of Haitians are prioritized through the compassionate exercise of prosecutorial discretion inside the United States and the application of U.S. asylum law to those seeking refuge at the border. No Haitian should be subjected to expedited removal or reinstatement of removal given the lives at stake and the Biden administration’s own assessment of the dangerous conditions in Haiti." (Source) Co-signees include American Immigrant Lawyers Association, CODEPINK, Fair Immigrant Reform Movement, and United We Dream.

U.S. government agencies risk their own lives alongside Haitians in very desperate times. We need a better framework.


Black LGBTQIA+ Migrant Project

Detention Watch Network

Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement

The Haitian Bridge Alliance

The Haitian Bridge - Help Haitians Seeking Asylum

United We Dream


Haiti Libre (English Version)

In Targeting Haitians, Biden May Execute the Largest Mass Expulsion of Asylum-Seekers... (The Intercept, 9-21-21)

Pelosi Statement on Reports of Mistreatment of Haitian Migrants at the Border (Speaker of the House, 9-20-21)

Key Events in the History of Haiti (Associated Press, 7-7-21)

Slavery and Remembrance - Haiti