Rubrique Mon Pays que J’aime, Mon Pays que Voici
Mireille Sylvain-David—–October 2014
Summary of a Sociological Study on the Haitians Living in the Miami Diaspora
and the Haitian in the Homeland.
From a sociological perspective, a community study of the behaviors of the Haitian
Diaspora in Miami versus the attitude of the Haitians living in Haiti was conducted
by Mireille Sylvain–David to find a link between the two groups and to underline
the contrast between them.
I Haitians in Miami
Not surprisingly, it was discovered that the Haitians in Miami have a very strong
cultural attach and a deep consciousness about the welfare of Haiti. In so far as it
could help, the culture served as a dynamic stimulus that very often kept the
community together in Miami. It was also noticed that Haitians in Miami are
focusing on being accepted in America. Since 1987, despites immigration problems,
language barriers, color prejudice and educational bias, many families have strived
to enter the American work force. Their children are now young professionals
scattered everywhere in the United States. This survival is certainly not just a fight
for the bare necessity, it is a historical miracle. Their cultural beliefs, religions,
traditions and norms have given them the incentive and the strength to start over in
a foreign country at a time when their country of origin could not and cannot
respond to their needs because of bad governance and lack of production for many
- Many Haitians in Miami are angry because of the poverty and the lack of
leadership in Haiti. They feel that they have the right to voice their opinions,
especially when a great part of the Haitian economy leans on their shoulders
in particular, and on the shoulders of the Haitian Diaspora, in general.
- Some Haitians in Miami suffering of nostalgia or urge to show their
countrymen in Haiti the fruits of their hard work in America traveled very
often to Haiti.
- According to certain people, there is a group of Haitians from Miami who
have the tendency to show off their newly learned skills and sturdy incomes.
They have often criticized the way of life of their friends in Haiti. Because of
this attitude, they have been labeled arrogant and even seen as bluffers by
many people in Haiti.
- Because repression and exploitation are almost overcome in Miami, Haitians
were able to seek for office and enter the political arena of Dade County.
Some of them have succeeded but there still is a long way to go and a lot to
learn about political ethnical power and group predominance in Miami which
is mostly dominated by the Cubans since the 60’s.
- On one hand, while some Haitians in Miami are fighting to be part of the
Miami political and social arena, they have in the midst of that survival never
been disconnected with Haiti. They have organized Haitian radio stations,
radio programs and television programs; they have formed cultural
organizations to keep their identity and their culture alive; they have opened
restaurants to promote Haitian food; they have literary and artistic productions
as the daily reminder of their interest for their motherland and their interaction
with their brothers.
- On the other hand, some Haitians in Miami feel completely at home in the
modernity of that city even though Miami has some negative aspects of a
southern town of the United States of America.
II Haitians in Haiti
Some Haitians in Haiti are showing a hate-love feeling for the Diaspora members,
even though they intensely need the assistance of the Haitian Diaspora in Miami or
- They pejoratively called the Haitian living aboard ‘DIASPO’: which means
outsiders, newly rich, rice and chicken eaters etc. Haitians in Haiti seemed to
play a trivial game that could easily be entitled: The Flying Money of the
Diaspora and the Graspers in the Motherland.
- Some Haitians living in Haiti even accused the Haitian Diaspora especially
the Miami Diaspora to cause disturbance in Haiti by voicing their opinions
- Instead of animating the dynamism to strengthen comprehension and share
skills to rebuild and think, some Haitians in Haiti are encouraging conflicts
between insiders and outsiders
- The leaders are not seriously addressing the issues to find a middle way to
reunite the two groups to do something sustainable like the Dominican
Republic, Israel and South Korea have done for their countries. A “Let’s get
Together” game could have been more productive to Haiti.
In the midst of globalization, the world sees Haiti as a failed state, but the most
important part is how we, Haitians see ourselves? Like in a puzzle, we could have
together learned to find the pieces and the tools that give a grasp to development.
Some members of the older political generations have left the country on a torn
carpet that needs to be restored or redone. We need to send to recycling the old
coats that we have been bearing for more than two centuries to “faire peau neuve.”
Haiti needs the Diaspora, and no Haitian Government can ignore the Diaspora. The
government has to notify the people that the Diaspora is ready to play a role in the
reconstruction of Haiti. The Government needs to trace a crossing path to develop
an engaging communicative approach between the two groups to create a dialogue.
There are valuable and knowledgeable people in Haiti who are like the Haitians in
the Diaspora willing to start the team work and create groups focused on nearly any
topic relevant to the welfare of the country. Bringing like-minded people together
is fundamental to education and development. This will give the two groups the
opportunity to share their expertise with one another. Together, they can give life
to each project that they plan to do. The people in Haiti know the crucial needs of
the masses while the people in the different Diasporas can offer the source
materials. The reality is that we, Haitians, are living everywhere in the globe but the
feeling of strong attraction and commitment to the country cannot be denied and our
love for Haiti is real no matter where we live on the planet.