strategies for a developing world…

Obama Grants TPS to… Liberians

What about the Haitians?

obama-signs-bill President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order on March 20,  extending the temporary stay in the US of an estimated 3,500 Liberians for another 12 months. Their current stay  of deportation would have expired in about 10 days on March 31st, 2009 and would have subjected them to deportation. Liberians breathed a sigh of relief.

Many are asking what about the Haitians? They are similarly situated insofar as the circumstances that led to their seeking refuge in the United States are not different than those which led to Liberians’ flight. Political upheaval, a shattered economy, a dysfunctional and feeble government, the presence of thousands of UN peacekeepers, these are the common ground that justify the presence of Haitians and Liberians on American soil.

It may be that the fear mongers are making what they believe is a crucial argument: that extending TPS to Liberians will not pull in more Liberians since they are several thousand miles away and cannot easily reach US shores, whereas granting TPS to Haitians might result in a rapid exodus from Haiti.

We have repeatedly pointed out that this is a bogus argument: it’s not based in reality. Similar arguments were made way back in 1992 after Bill Clinton won the elections. During the presidential campaign  he had taken President George H. W. Bush to task for wrong-headed policies towards Haiti that he committed to change once in power. As soon as inauguration day loomed closer however, the bureaucracy at the State Department, the National Security Council and the Immigration and Naturalization Service spooked him into backing off from his commitment to have new policies in place for the Haitian refugees. How? By claiming that there had been so much boat building since the November 1992 elections that they estimated that at least 125,000 more Haitians would be sailing towards US shores by inauguration day. The evidence was allegedly collected via helicopter flights over the Haitian coastline that documented through photographs the so-called feverish activity of the Haitians. Dozens of international reporters amplified the claim with stories backing it up… except that virtually all the reports focused on just one typical boat building operation in the town of Petit Goave, just a stone’s throw from Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince.

So what about the Haitians, Mr. President? Will you listen to your good counsel or allow yourself to be spooked by the naysayers?

[updated to reflect that the number of Liberians granted a TPS extension was 3,500,  not 35,000 as some media had erroneously reported]

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6 Responses

  1. Is it possible for Haitian citizens to help his/her father or mother who has no place to stay in Haiti to enter NY?

  2. Citing human rights abuses and civil strife in Haiti, in 1997, former President Clinton granted Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) to Haitian nationals in the U.S. who had fled the military junta in Haiti. No subsequent influx of Haitian immigrants ensued. Another argument posed by those objecting to TPS is that TPS is never truly temporary. This is simply false. According to USCIS, TPS has been granted and then terminated for the following countries: Angola, Lebanon, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Liberia, El Salvador , Montserrat, Guinea-Bissau, Rwanda, Kosovo Province (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia), Sierra Leone, Kuwait, and Burundi. All three Administrations that have invoked TPS have also terminated TPS status. 

  3. I think this is a legitimate issue that may led to a serious matter to say, let us look at the fact. review Fredrick Douglass history tale. It seem to me there is something very significant about Haitian people itself, Let us review and verify the main reason .

    Some of this particular passage was written by Mr. John Martin who was director of the Rakow Library of the Corning Glass Museum, and founding director of the Corning Community College Library. And other research that I personally made over the course of the process example, “the connection of Liberian and Haitian.” and the implication in to this particular selection itself by “Madison Smartt Bell and Laurent Dubois.”( Moise, Martin 1964: 2009).

    ” Haitian Savannah, Georgia 1779

    A bloody reminder: The massive bronze and granite monument honoring more than 500 Haitian soldiers who fought in the Revolutionary War’s bloody siege of Savannah was unveiled on Monday at historic Franklin Square in Savannah, GA.

    After 228 years as largely unsung contributors to American independence, Haitian soldiers who fought in the Revolutionary War’s bloody siege of Savannah had a monument dedicated in their honor Monday. About 150 people, many of them Haitian-Americans who came to Savannah for the event, gathered in Franklin Square where life-size bronze statues of four soldiers now stand atop a granite pillar 6 feet tall and 16 feet in diameter. “This is a testimony to tell people we Haitians didn’t come from the boat,” said Daniel Fils-Aime, chairman of the Miami-based Haitian American Historical Society. We were here in 1779 to help America win independence. That recognition is overdue. In October 1779, a force of more than 500 Haitian free blacks joined American colonists and French troops in an unsuccessful push to drive the British from Savannah in coastal Georgia. More than 300 allied soldiers were gunned down charging British fortifications Oct. 9, making the siege the second-most lopsided British victory of the war after Bunker Hill.

    From the get go James Theodore Holly, 1829-1911
    “Born in Washington, D.C. as a descendent of free slaves, Holly was baptized and confirmed a Roman Catholic. His early years were spent in D.C. and Brooklyn where he connected with Frederick Douglas and other black abolitionists. After a dispute over the ordination of black clergy, Holly left the Catholic Church and joined the Episcopal Church in 1851. As an Episcopalian, Holly attended the first National Emigration Convention as a delegate and was selected commissioner for the newly formed National Emigration Board. Under the auspices of this office, he traveled to Haiti in order to negotiate an emigration treaty. While there, he explored the possibility of establishing a mission for the Episcopal Church. Upon Holly’s return to the United States, he requested that he be sent to Haiti to serve as a missionary, a request denied by the Board of Missions of the Episcopal Church.

    In (1856) Holly was ordained a priest in New Haven, Connecticut. That same year he co-founded the Protestant Episcopal Society for Promoting the Extension of the Church Among Colored People, which challenged the Church to take a position at General Convention against slavery. Holly served as rector at St Luke’s Church in New Haven, Connecticut until 1861 during which time he traveled and extolled the benefits of emigration to Haiti, a country where slaves had led a successful revolt and overthrown their European forces. He viewed Haiti as an opportunity for blacks to bind together and establish a black nation in the Western hemisphere. Holly believed that bringing Anglicanism to Haiti would help to stabilize and develop the country more expeditiously.

    Upon Holly’s resignation from his position at St. Luke’s in 1861, he led a group of 110 people to Haiti. Many in the group were congregants of St. Luke’s and subscribed to Holly’s vision for Haiti. Despite the obstacles, they succeeded in the establishment of a mission in Haiti. The disease and poor living conditions plaguing the settlers (forty-three members died of yellow fever and malaria during the first year, including his mother, wife and two of his children), prompted many of them to return to the United States. Holly remained with only the most dedicated followers to establish schools, a church, and programs in pastoral training and countryside medicine.

    It was not until 1865 and after many denied requests that Holly finally began to receive limited sponsorship from the Board of Missions for his work in Haiti. After serving as consul for Liberia at Port-au-Prince from 1864 to1874, Holly was consecrated missionary bishop to Haiti at Grace Episcopal Church in New York City, becoming the first African American bishop in the Episcopal Church. As bishop, Holly served as a delegate to the Lambeth conference in England, and received a doctoral degree from Howard University and an honorary law degree from Liberia College, Monrovia. He continued to live and work in Haiti, returning rarely to the United States, until his death in 1911.

    Even as he was writing the Emancipation Proclamation during the summer of 1862, Lincoln was working feverishly to ship all those slaves he was about to free out of the United States. So taken was he with the concept of colonization that he invited five black men to the White House and offered them funding to found a black republic in Panama, for the slaves he was about to free. Earlier, he had advocated that the slaves be freed and shipped to Liberia or Haiti. And just one month before the Emancipation became the law of the land, in his Annual Massage to Congress on Dec. 1, 1862, Lincoln proposed a constitutional amendment that would “appropriate money, and otherwise provide, for colonizing free colored persons with their own consent, at any place or places without the United States.” Even to the beauty of the man yet, he was a two-faces like character.

    Abraham Lincoln, Racist Remake, the New York Times

    More problematic were Lincoln’s has viewed on race. He held opinions not very different from those of the majority of his racist countrymen. Even if slavery was wrong, “there is a physical difference between the white and black races that will for ever forbid the two races from living together on terms of social and political equality.” His solution was a form of ethnic cleansing: shipping blacks off to Liberia, or Haiti, or Central America — anywhere as long as it wasn’t the United States.

    Frederick and Anna Douglas moved to Washington, D.C. in 1877, buying a house, which became his last home, and here he became an influence in national black affairs in the Reconstruction Period. Anna died in 1882, and two years later Frederick married one of the secretaries on his staff, a white woman, and the cause of much controversy, which he ignored. In 1889 he was appointed Minister to Haiti by the U.S. government. As the Grand Old Man of the anti-slavery movement, young blacks criticized him as time went by since the Republican Party did not live up to its earlier support of blacks, especially in the South, while Douglass refrained from criticizing the Party. These younger black critics and some self-seeking black politicians did not realize the part he had played in helping to bring the white citizens of the North to favor abolition and the emancipation of the slaves. Douglas died in 1895 and his body was interred in the Mt. Hope Cemetery in Rochester, the town from which he had been most active in his fight for the emancipation of American slaves.”

    LH. Why most Tolerate Liberian people ? Because of the Selection of scientific factor. Of (L H),
    Liberian and Haitian.

    Robert Lansing (US Secretary of State) 1912

    Quoted in TW Resurgence, No 50 (Oct 94), pg 38. Also Chomsky Zmag article on Haiti pg56 (vapi?) The experience of Liberia and Haiti shows that the African race is devoid of any capacity fort political organization… there is an inherent tendency to revert to savagery and to cast aside the shackles of civilization, which are irksome to their nature.

    President Woodrow Wilson (1913-1921)

    The experience of Liberia and Haiti show that the African race are devoid of any capacity for political organization… there is an inherent tendency to revert to savagery and to cast aside the shackles of civilization which are irksome to their physical nature.

    Eighty-three years later (83). 2004

    Haitian American Senator Kwame Raoul

    13th District – Chicago strict Senate Office

    Kwame Raoul who was (born September 30, 1964) is an American politician and a Democratic member of the Illinois Senate, representing the 13th district since his appointment to fill the seat vacated by Barack Obama in 2004. He is the Senate chair of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucusa.
    State Senator Kwame Raoul was born in Chicago, Illinois on September 30, 1964, to Haitian-born immigrants Janin Raoul, M.D. and Marie Therese Raoul. His personal commitment to the people of the South Side of Chicago was fostered early in his life by the work of his father, who served as a physician to the Woodlawn, North Kenwood, Grand Boulevard and Englewood communities for over thirty years. Kwame is a lifelong resident of the Hyde Park/Kenwood area, where he lives with his wife Kali, son Che and daughter Mizan.

    Senator Raoul earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from DePaul University and a law degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law in 1993. His formative instruction, from kindergarten through high school (at Ancona School, Harvard St. George and the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools), took place in the very area he now serves in the Illinois Senate.

    As a former Cook County Prosecutor and now Senior Attorney for the City Colleges of Chicago, Senator Raoul is a career advocate for the neighborhoods comprising the 13th Senate District. Partnering with Aldermen Toni Preckwinkle and Leslie Hairston, Senator Raoul has served as the director of volunteer legal clinics in each Ward. During his private practice he successfully represented indigent clients, protected their civil liberties and ensured that in need received required human services and other thing is well.

    Eighty-five years later. (85) 2006

    First African, Haitian, Bishop in Brooklyn New York 2006.

    Mr. Sansaricq born October 6, 1934, in Jeremie a rural town in Haiti,
    In that same year, he was accepted to serve in the Diocese of Brooklyn and was assigned to Sacred Heart parish in Cambria Heights, where he served for 22 years. During that time, he was appointed diocesan coordinator of the Haitian Apostolate. In 1987 he was selected by the US Bishops to head the National Haitian Apostolate. In 1993, he was named pastor of St. Jerome’s Church in Flatbush, where he has continued to minister. Pope John Paul II named him Prelate of Honor in 1999. He was ordained auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn in 2006 subsequently.

    Eighty-seven years later (87) 2008
    During president Obama campaign election. 2008

    Haitian-American Patrick Gaspard to Be ”White House Political Director”

    “According to a well-informed sources, Patrick Gaspard, political director of 1199 SEIU, broke the news to the union today that the leave of absence he took back in June to be Barack Obama’s campaign political director has turned into something more permanent. It will soon be announced that Gaspard, who has been serving as the associate personnel director for Obama’s transition team, will be Obama’s White House political director and more to be announce about Mr. Gaspard.”

    Further Readings and References

    Barkun, Michael. Crucible of the Millennium: The Burned-Over District of New York in the 1840s. Cornell University Press. Ithaca, New York. 1964
    Barnes, Gilbert. The Anti-Slavery Impulse, 1830-1844. n.p. 1933.
    Bradford, Sarah H. Scenes in the Life of Harriet Tubman, the Moses of Her People. Auburn, New York. W. J. Moses, printer.1869. (Re-printed in 1993 by Applewood Books, Bedford. Massachusetts.)
    “Harriet Tubman Siebert, Wilbur. The Underground Railroad: from Slavery to Freedom. n.p. 1898.

  4. may be Bill Clinton understand Haitian better than George Bush and Obama .my wife and I voted for obama, i hope our vote has not been  wasted.


  1. Global Voices Online » Haiti, U.S.A.: Temporary Protected Status


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