As a human being I’m deeply disturbed and frankly repulsed by the reports about the recent use of derogatory language by the President of the United States, Donald Trump, regarding El Salvador, Haiti and 54 African countries. Calling them “shithole nations” is especially offensive to me as a Caribbean citizen of African descent who has spent many years living and working in development aid on the African continent. I admit that his vile comments felt like they were directed to me personally. It was hurtful.
Like many, I was however not surprised by Trump’s racist language. To be surprised would’ve meant a gross overestimation on my part of who he really is. I read his résumé, so I know what to expect. After all, when you’re pushing a racist agenda, racist comments come all too easily.
I don’t envisage the U.S. president apologizing or, God forbid change his behavior. What I do hope is that every human being with a sense of humanity and compassion denounce these highly offensive statements. And, you don’t need to be black, from Africa or the Caribbean to take offense at what he said. Today the people from El Salvador, Haiti and 54 African countries were targeted, tomorrow it could be other groups like the Aborigines, disabled, Native Americans, Albinos or even people from Curaçao. I sincerely hope that our local leaders will speak out. Their conspicuous silence so far on this matter is disconcerting.