Haitians vs. Del Rio: Racism or fear?

By Gabrielle Ringold, Clarion Staff Reporter

A great sum of American citizens can probably agree that America has never been the most “trustworthy” country in the world. Citizens have often seen through social media, like live Instagram and Snapchat stories, that the government makes unreasonable mandates and laws. For example, legalizing marijuana, ending drug tests to get hired at a business, and loose state level laws about abortions. Police officers also haven’t been the most fair power source since the  killings. Society has created the police to be the “big bad wolf” in our story and many times they have proven themselves to.                            

In society, many times the color of your skin depends on how you get treated.  Other races can come to America from other countries but as soon as the Haitians come here, they’re not welcome. They get greeted with ropes and hostile language.

Rosalie Pereyra, Kennedy 11th grader, says “Uh..yes…it was right for the Haitians to try and escape because they were just trying to gain their freedom.”

That’s what everyone in every country wants. Freedom. It’s something that has been and still is slightly restricted to certain races, people in middle and lower classes, and especially foreigners. 

On September 9, more than 10,000 Haitians were found in Del Rio, Texas. Some were already here from Central America because of natural disasters and their poor government. Due to the disasters , they traveled here seeking help, guidance, and support. However in August 2021, the Department of State (DOS) announced that they were establishing a “Level 4 travel advisory for Haiti” meaning people couldn’t travel to and from Haiti because of kidnapping, crime, riots, and COVID-19. 

While this was being put in place, Haitians were crossing the Rio Grande to create their new life. As they were coming out of the water, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Title 42 authority greeted them at the shore with horses to break the crowd apart. This started a rumor of a possible health risk that the Haitians could’ve brought here from their country.

Ropes were thrown, kids were taken away, mostly adults but people in general were dragged. The event caused a major conflict between the people and President Biden who everyone thought wasn’t going to do anything. Eventually, he and Vice President Kamala Harris punished the officers who were on the horses by suspending them from border patrol. He did take responsibility much later, but there was one other person who spoke out about this disaster: Congresswoman Maxine Waters.

After the incident, Congresswoman Waters spoke outside of the Capitol building on September 24, saying, “What we witnessed takes us back hundreds of years. What we witnessed was worse than what we witnessed in slavery…whipping Black people into the water, where they’re scrambling and falling down, when all they’re trying to do is escape from violence in their country.”

It was an image of modern day slavery. They weren’t being sold to other people but they were still getting whipped like they were wild animals. They were rounding up thousands of Haitians on planes back to Haiti and now they’re all gone. They’re all back to the country that drove them to escape in the first place. 

People can say that everything is back to normal. The border in Texas is now empty. The Haitians that were under the Del Rio International bridge are gone too. The border was closed but it reopened after a while. The U.S officials did apologize because of the treatment of the migrants. They also say that it’s “not how border officials or the Department of Homeland behave”.

However, Juan Gonzalez, U.S National Security Council’s director, says that the large crowd of migrants created a public health risk.

“The danger is too great.” stated Gonzalez. The future of the Haitians is unknown. Will they get the help they need or will they be imprisoned in the prison they call “home”?

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