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24044: Hermantin (Pub) letters to the Editor (fwd)

From: leonie hermantin <lhermantin@hotmail.com>


Gabriel Marcella's idea -- Protectorate may be Haiti's only alternative,
Jan. 2 Other Views column -- and the concept of Haiti as a sovereign state
that holds valid elections are not mutually exclusive. Perhaps both are the
answer. Why not encourage Haiti's temporary government to agree to a secure,
monitored election, with whatever outside police and social aids prove
necessary? Require that the ''winners'' be bound by a protectorate's
oversight until certain measurable and transparent goals are met.

My studies in public health and education in Haiti during 35 years have
convinced me that there are intelligent professionals in Haiti who
understand the dismal history of the past 200 years. Many champion a
renaissance in education, public health, security, agriculture, art and
culture, commerce, tourism, etc. Haiti needs a special commission on
reconstruction, democratization and conflict resolution.

Stripping Haiti of its status as a sovereign state should not be other
nations' prerogative, despite the injustices in that unfortunate country. We
can help Haiti maintain its dignity and its future with secured elections
combined with the concept of a temporary protectorate.

RAUL R. CUADRADO, professor emeritus,

Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale

Haitians started a human-rights revolution in 1804, not a state. The Haitian
Revolution achieved its mission, which was not to build a nation but to
liberate Africans in the Americas from bondage. The artificial status and
borders that restricted the expansion of that liberation movement were set
by the powerful Western democracies whose economies at the time were
threatened by universal justice and human rights.

Haiti's people enjoyed 161 years of costly freedom and hard-earned dignity
before Martin Luther King Jr. made those fashionable in the United States.
It's unfortunate that there was no United Nations to assist Haiti with the
dysfunctional society produced in 1804 by more than 500,000 ''liberated
slaves'' in a country isolated by an international community that
compromised its humanity rath er than its slave-trade-based economy.

Haitians will always be proud of what the revolution achieved, and I am
personally grateful for the pride and dignity that it has nurtured in the
heart of young black children. I welcome the search for a new identity for
Haiti. I am concerned, however, by a world still shamed by the existence of
black ghettoes that share Haiti's level of lawlessness, poverty and
isolation, places surrounded by fellow citizens' economic successes but
still unequal to Haitian society's humanitarian values.

It saddens me to see many people of goodwill still in denial about the
tragedy caused by Haiti's untimely victory over an evil empire and the
destruction caused by generations of isolation and neglect by the world

I am glad that Haiti can count on the leadership of friends like Gov. Jeb
Bush, who brought the support of the international community and the state
of Florida by working in partnership with the South Florida's
Haitian-American community and without the humiliation of referring to our
beloved country as a ``failed state.''

JEAN F. COLIN, Cooper City