« Read other entries… »
In my signature on emails I have been using recently is this quote from Mahatma Gandhi: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” I am not sure of the exact order but this seems to be the way when you are an agent of change.
The other day one of the companions on our SOA Watch delegation to Haiti last year wrote the group an email that David Oxygène, a young community activist that we had met was now imprisoned for his community nonviolent action of protesting for jobs at a government ministry. When we were there he invited us to one of the group’s action when they blocked part of the street in front of the government Ministry of Social Affairs.
We were there right after a new President, a music singer and favorite of the US administration was elected President in a disputed elections. David Oxgene and his group MOLEGHAF, (Movement for Liberty and Equality by Haitians for Fraternity) were at that time being ignored.
Haiti’s President, Michel Martelly, with America’s help, has now established himself and rather than ignoring protest he is fighting back. Using some of the tactics of former dictator, Jean-Claude Duvalier, President Martelly is starting to fight back on any protest of his government.
In the past Haiti has been devastated by outside forces, foreign countries and NGO’s, Non Government Organizations. The author Timothy Schwartz in his book “Travesty in Haiti” how in one county before the NGOs in 1950’s the county “boasted banana plantations and refrigerated ships visited the county’s harbor and hauled the produce to Miami; a five thousand acre sisal plantations; tobacco farms; a major rum distillery; and a sugar plantation; There were thriving export houses to which the peasants sold goat and cow hides, coffee castor bean oil, and aloe. By the 1980’s all that was gone.“ Now outside governments like the USA and major NGO’s have exercised control again of Haiti and the country is now the poorest in the hemisphere.
So protest that was ignored is now being suppressed. So David Oxygene now sits in jail. Some say this is a defeat but Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. would say that his jailing is a victory. The activities like him are no longer being ignored but are being fought against now not being ignored or laughed at by the authorities but by being fought against they would say is a sign they are on the road to victory. For you win when they fight you.
Due to a Robotic Spam Machine that kept attacking our comments we had to discontinue the comment box. But if you have a comment on this or any posting please send it to
and we will publish it below the posting.