Friday, January 21, 2011

US Gov't Funding Cultural Genocide in Haiti

"Cultural genocide extends beyond attacks upon the physical and/or biological elements of a group and seeks to eliminate its wider institutions. This is done in a variety of ways, and often includes the abolition of a group’s language, restrictions upon its traditional practices and ways, the destruction of religious institutions and objects, the persecution of clergy members, and attacks on academics and intellectuals. Elements of cultural genocide are manifested when artistic, literary, and cultural activities are restricted or outlawed and when national treasures, libraries, archives, museums, artifacts, and art galleries are destroyed or confiscated."

[David Nersessian, Rethinking Cultural Genocide Under International Law]
Abe Sauer has written an explosive expose on the predatory activities of Christian missionaries in Haiti since last year's devastating earthquake: Our Government-Funded Mission to Make Haiti Christian: Your Tax Dollars, Billy Graham's Son, Monsanto and Sarah Palin.

Most explosive of all is the fact that these missionaries are directly funded by the United States government!

These missionaries are hell-bent on nothing short of a sweeping cultural genocide in Haiti. Vodou is practiced by as much as 80% of Haiti's population, and represents a direct continuation of the religious traditions that the ancestors of Haitians brought with them from Africa centuries ago. US based, and US funded, Christian missionaries wish to completely eradicate this religious tradition, which lies at the very heart of Haitian society.

In addition to Sauer's excellent piece, also check out these:
ALSO: "Exporting Faith", a Boston Globe four part series:
(some background on how we got to this point)
Part 1: Bush Brings Faith to Foreign Aid
Part 2: Religious right wields clout
Part 3: Together, but worlds apart
Part 4: Healing the body to reach the soul

Finally, having cursed the darkness, let us light a candle or two:

Hat tip to Jason at the Wild Hunt!

1 comment:

KatyDid said...

Cool. That looks like a great article, and you bring up a good point about genocide.

When most of us think “genocide,” we think Hitler loading Jews into boxcars. But all of the international organizations remind us – when they themselves remember it – that their definitions of “genocide” include those characteristics that identify a group as a group.
In other words, if I let some of the British live, but I purge them of the Church of England and royal family and boiled food and accents in order to “let” them survive, I have committed genocide.

The irony is that the U.S. has taken steps towards legally protecting the practice of Yoruba-based religions like Vodou and Santeria HERE, but we help in its extermination elsewhere. Of course, these religions literally STARTED as attempts by transplanted Africans to appear more Christian than they were to begin with… so Vodou will survive…