Monday, January 23, 2006

I remember wanting to go to Colombia when I was in college only to change my mind because I didn't want to take the risk of getting kidnapped. I had heard horror stories from Colombian friends, seen stories about wealthy Mexicans and Brazilians buying armored cars and hiring bodyguards.
Yet, i never thought that my my middle-class Haitian family would ever have to worry about things like that. I never thought that I would worry about my parents going to the grocery store or going to church. I never thought I would worry about my cousin going to her med school classes every day.
I never thought I would be strongly advised not to go back home not even for a week.
January 2006, I am now told that my grandmother is advised by my parents not to come to the capital, Port-Au-Prince, to visit her doctor for fear of getting kidnapped. They told her to wait a bit until things are safer. My grandmother lives in a sleepy coastal city South of Haiti where nothing ever happens.
I think that this is when I realized that the country I knew during my teenage years has definitely ceased to exist. I do not know the Haiti of today. I don't know what to do in order not to be kidnapped. I don't know how my friends and relatives do it. Sure, people have changed their lifestyles drastically. All my neighbors, my father included, have weapons and my mom who loved walking around all the different Port-Au-Prince neighborhoods is now restrained to her suburb.
Yet it could happen at anytime. I fear receiving a phone call or an email giving me dreaded news. My parents tell me not to worry but when wealthy industrials to struggling street vendors get caught in this new kidnapping industry that has replaced baseball factories, I think that I have the right to worry.
We can only hope and pray for a safer Haiti for all.
We can only hope and pray for a Latin America & Caribbean that can gives to all its children hope and a chance to get ahead.
We can only hope for a world that is more just.


At 11:38 PM, Blogger Alice B. said...

Nuf said.


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