An Address to the International from a concerned citizen by Dr. Jacques-Raphaël Georges
» … If you do not make any distinction between slaves, you condemn yourself to have only a theoretical sympathy for them… Particularly as it often happens that the « slave » is the ally of those you call the Masters. » (Jean-Paul Sartre) ============ =========
IN THE NAME OF THE HAITIAN PEOPLE
An Open Letter from Dr. Jacques-Raphaël Georges to the Women and Men of Good Conscience of the International Community.
Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community, how often have I not heard the following question or read it in the eyes of those who dared not to ask it: “And you continue to defend these people?”
My answer has always been an emphatic Yes! Yes, a thousand times, and in all cases. Yes, because that is the sacrosanct mission of those of us who work in Academia, this noble fringe of human activities which draws its existence from the Garden of Academos, in ancient Greece, in the fourth century, BC, with Plato. Indeed, this mission is our raison d’être and our badge of honor. Yes, because what will re – main of us when our civilization is gone is what survives in every culture buried under the ashes of History: the idea it has entertained of mankind and of justice.
Gone are diplomats, gone are emperors, gone are presidents, gone are generals and merchants. Alas! They are gone without leaving any descendants, and sometimes without leaving a twinkle of their passage on our galaxy. Yet, we cannot afford the luxury of forgetting that moment when Jewish morality substituted “la loi du Talion,” the law of Talion” of an eye for an eye, superseded by the concept of equity and fairness.
Judging crimes as well as those who commit them has been essential to the Star of Bethel since time immemorial, through a select constellation of women and men who oppose tyranny, especially the tyranny of impunity! Those who withhold support from the people of Haiti are in – deed trampling on Humanism that, against all odds, has painfully defied the test of times. Yet, paradoxically, they are the same who, shamelessly, boast of being members of the Human Race!
Ladies and gentlemen of the International Community, it is customary to say that there are two kinds of testimony: one that is true and another that is false. I confess that this is a simplistic manner of viewing things. Nevertheless, I must argue also that often we choose to believe certain testimonies because they alleviate our conscience and keep us in our comfort zone.
Ladies and gentlemen of the International Community it’s obvious, that knowingly and deliberately, some testimonies are brushed aside because they would likely offset our entire being, our center of gravity, or what I would preferably call our psyche.
“To govern is to apply the law. And the law is related to justice.” I have asked myself, and I am now asking you, Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community, is it justice that the Permanent Electoral Council, emanation of the will of the sovereign people be set aside in imposing the cohort of Aristide, Préval, Privert, Martelly, and Moïse, without omitting the eternal political opposition, this moral and intellectual aberration? What relationship exists between the International Community and the assassins of the Haitian Constitutional order?
“Errare Humanum est, Perseverare Diabolicum est!’
Errare Humanum Est, Perseverare Diabolicum Est! That was a favorite phrase of my Latin instructor, the Sorbonne Gradua te, Dr. Joseph Saint-Vil, at Lycée Tous saint Louverture, in Port-au-Prince. Indeed, he never failed to remind us then: “Il n’y a en Haïti que deux Docteurs Ès-Lettres: le Docteur Ghislain Gouraige et moi” there are only two Es-Lettres Doctors in Haiti, Dr. Ghislain Gouraige and I!
Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community, these poseurs, so many imposters of freedom, were imposed only by the sheer force of the unconstitutional Provisional Electoral Coun cil, and their action on the population has been almost null and void. The duvalierists remain duvalierists, the lavalassiens remain lavalassiens, the mulattoes remain mulattoes, the thieves remain thieves, the assassins remain assassins, the poor remain poor, the fools remain fools. There have been no profound changes– politically. socially, intellectually, even emotionally! Despite gigantic efforts of international missions, rare cases of conversions are reported. It is doubtful that they are sincere, unless one is simple-minded.
« Bluebeard’s Portrayal in Perrault’s Works is far from being the same in Bartok’s Masterpiece . . .”
Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community, indeed, the politicians in Port-au-Prince have brought something to the people of Haiti, it is the worst Nessus’ tunic they could hand to them during the famous “Return to constitutional order” of Aristide. It has been the plague of banditry, fanaticism, alcoholism, nepotism, impunity, and a sear materialism. For the rest, what personal possession the poor people of Haiti had of their own was greater than what the fake gods of this permanent coup d’état could ever give them, that is the will to remain true to themselves. What was attempted through demagogic constraints has spawn worse results than expected. Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community, wisdom would dictate to refrain from such efforts, when it is known that they are vain. To the credit of the most repugnant clan in the world, they have succeeded in instilling hatred everywhere. Somehow that hatred has awaken the Haitian people from their sleep and now they are intent on driving out their tormentors. Indeed, an indirect — and unexpected bonus of the hatred.
“On February 7, We are All President (s)!”
Ladies and Gentlemen of the In ter national Community, have you heard the recent rallying cries of the Haitian people: “On February 7, pèp la prezidan.” Yes, you are not victims of any visual or auditory hallucination. I am only giving you their own words in their good old Creole. “Speak to me in the language of civilized people,” you would, no doubt, say to me. Well, you are served: “On February 7, We, the people are The President.” That is the meaning of what the angry crowds have been chanting in the streets of Port-au-Prince. No longer is there any question of sterilizing these people. On the contrary, good reasoning would suggest that their rights be recognized, conferred upon them from their fecundity, attested to by their proliferation. Thank goodness, these undernourished Black masses have been spared any Tuskegee experiment! Yet, in some neighborhoods and certain countries around the world, Blacks still are treated as less than human.
Above all, do not let go of the “democratic” schoolteacher in the working-class neighborhoods! For that would be a sure way to lose both the students in their care, as well as their parents. The ideal solution would be to teach these people elementary mimic. We would ask them to be less than deaf-mutes. No print words conceived for them. Radio stations would be bribed to distill fake news in Creole and play music not really intended for their consumption. Radio Caraïbes and Radio Kiskeya, broadcasting in Creole, would be sufficient for essential “information,” and as much music as they want. We are also advised not to saddle them with any type of work that requires the least mental effort.
The face of Bluebeard is not similar in Charles Perrault and in Bela Bartok. In addition, in a century there would be a new Bartok to affirm that behind the door at Berchtesgaden, the Hitler fortified fortress, he alone had the key to it, stretched as it was under a stormy sky and an ocean filled with tears.
- “Understand who will.
- At that time, so as not to chastise The culprits, we mistreated Girls.
- We even went so far as to mow them.
- Understand who will.
- Me, my remorse was
- The poor girl who stayed
- On the pavement …
- The one who looks like the dead
- Who died for being loved!” (2)
“What common link is there between the Executive and the Judiciary? In Haiti, is the Judiciary and the Executive supportive of each other, or should they, instead, counterbalance each other? Shouldn’t they function as a counterpower to each other? What collusion exists, in law and fact, between a judge and the National Palace, the seat of Executive power?”
Even those with a minimum degree of common sense will admit that sometimes ignorance, in Port-au-Prince, is considered rational. As a boy growing up in Haiti in the 50s, the 60s, even the early 70s, it was a big deal to know how to play soccer. On the other hand, not knowing anything about surfing was not a mortal sin. However, I cannot grasp how a “Government of the People and by the People” manages to stay afloat, when its basic structures are not understood, nor have any rationale.
What powers have we granted the government and what have we reserved for ourselves? And who does or does not possess the constitutional authority to make new laws to govern us, to execute the laws and be able to judge us according to them? Whatever happens to democratic accountability and civic responsibility? What happens when we lose sight of how disparate groups set themselves up as emissaries of the people without even deigning to seek their consent? Moreover, what happens to the sacrosanct separation of powers in democratic governance, especially when, overnight, a Judge, against the will of the People, becomes the Head of the Executive Branch?
Consider an unimaginative judge, lacking cultural sensitivity –of whom there is no shortage in this post-constitutional Haiti– I think of Lord Jim, the character in Conrad’s novel. The young man with a promising future, as his name indicates, must flee from his past. Does he intend to rebuke Jean Racine’s heroine? “One does not run away from one’s destiny!”
“The Rule of Law”
What we call « The Rule of Law » depends on the existence of laws that are reasonably concise, clear, and stable. Only then can people live their lives accordingly. The rule of law is threatened when the laws become an instrument in the hands of a restricted group intent on using them to control and exploit the citizenry.
It is reasonable to wonder where we stand on those metrics, in today’s Haiti. The very idea of compiling all the defunct « constitutions » of the country, without any input from the people is an outrage. To have the audacity to even think that this monstrosity would represent the « new fundamental Charter of the Nation » is a national crime against which every citizen has the right to rise up. It is one of those conspiracies against the security of the State that, through their blindness, the International Community as well as the National cannot justify…
History teaches what happens when societies fail to impart civic duties, leading to disdain of civility and the crumbling of a civilization. In 20th century Europe there were people who sought to remake the social order to fit their worldview and their ideology. The stakes of the day were too high, they thought, to tolerate any discourse and dissent. They also believed the ends justified the means. We know how that ended.
That said, Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community the primary merit of the “Return to constitutional order of Aristide” is to have enabled the greatest number to realize that a certain justice –responding to anarchy by the rule of law– was out of date.
That said, Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community, the primary merit of the » Return to constitutional order of Aristide « is to have enabled the greatest number to realize that… giving to elected officials the possibility of violating the law or overdoing it by ridiculing it. is a luxury that a Democratic State does not have the means to afford. Why grant to Aristide or Moise what is denied to ordinary citizens?
THE RIGHT TO DISOBEDIENCE IS NOT WRITTEN IN ANY TEXT, IN ANY COUNTRY!
That said, Ladies and Gentlemen of the International Community, the primary merit of the » Return to constitutional order of Aristide « is to have enabled the greatest number to realize that… giving to elected officials the possibility of violating the law or overdoing it by ridiculing it… is a luxury that a Democratic State does not have the means to afford. Why grant to Aristide or Moïse what is denied to ordinary citizens? The right to disobedience is not written in any text of law, in any country!
It demonstrates vividly that in our next Republic, nobody, in reality, should be saved from anything, that on each of us can come down the unforgiven arm of this even handed and Respected Old Lady named, JUSTICE!
Justice must be the same for all, if only to guarantee everyone an identical right to error! It demonstrates vividly that in our next Republic, nobody, in reality, should be saved from anything, that each of us can come down the unforgiven arm of this even handed and Respected Old Lady named, JUSTICE!
Justice must be the same for all, if only to guarantee everyone an identical right to error! But, be mindful, ladies and gentlemen of the International and National Community, when the people do not see the arrival of Justice, they themselves substitute for Justice!
It is shameful when diplomats are engaged in influence bootlegging. In doing so, blinded by their greed …, they trample upon the high values and the laws of their own countries…
- Dr. JRG, 10 Feb
Cet article est publié par l’hebdomadaire Haïti-Observateur, édition du 17 février 2021 VOL. LI, No. 7 New York, et se trouve en P. 12, 13 à : http://haiti-observateur.info/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/H-O-17-fev-2021.pdf