Today, Danticat along with another U.S.-based Caribbean writer Junot Diaz are calling for protests, including travel boycotts against the deportations of residents of Haitian descent. For the Dominican-born Diaz, the blame lies in the “indifference to racial and political tensions” that exploit and dehumanize Haitian migrants, “who are attempting to save themselves from the ruin inflicted by other people.”
I am struck by the way that injustice is legislated. Whether we speak of the Holocaust, Apartheid or Jim Crow, legality has been used as a political construct that validates human rights abuses and absolves lawmakers of the moral depravity of their actions.
Creation of nation states are always accompanied by a hierarchy of personhood and one that is not exclusive to the Caribbean. With Canada and the United States both finding migrant workers fit to produce the bulk of the food supplies, even recently bringing in dozens of Mexican firefighters to Edmonton, Alberta to help battle wildfires in northern Alberta, but without affording any of the rights and protections given to a citizen.
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