Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Now, cholera in Haiti

Poverty, dictatorship, deforestation, hurricanes, earthquakes, now . . .
Stacked with body bags full of corpses of cholera victims, a converted flatbed truck and a colorful tap-tap taxi swerved into the yard of the mayor's office and their drivers asked where to bury the dead.

"Get out of here. Get out of here before they start throwing stones," a city hall employee screamed, her voice panicky, her hands flaring.

A crowd started circling. Three poorly armed police officers showed up and announced more were on the way. Then the city hall employee jumped into a car and motioned the corpse vehicles to follow. The angry crowd shouted and began throwing rocks.

Frightened by a disease never before known in this nation, Haitians are running scared. Residents are stoning the dead and their handlers, local mayors are refusing their burial, and families are abandoning bodies on the streets.

Haiti is unfit for human habitation. It should not be the home of millions of people. The Haitian people survive only because of the foreign aid they receive.

At some point, Haiti needs to be taken off life support, and much of its population resettled elsewhere. We don't leave people on sinking ships.

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