[Translation of an article from Espacinsular of Santo Domingo for December 6, 2013. See original here. The court ruling in question, number 168/13, would deny Dominican nationality to those born in the country since 1929 of undocumented immigrant parents. It would affect primarily the approximately 250,000 Haitian-Dominicans living there who, without a cédula, the national identification card, would be unable to vote, be hired for any job except in the informal sector, open a bank account, enroll in college, receive social security, obtain a passport or be issued birth certificates for their children.]
By Luis M. Rodríguez
New York, December 6 – A committee of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) is in the Dominican Republic. The purpose of their visit is to monitor and watch over the results of ruling 168/13 by the Constitutional Tribunal and to determine whether the ruling violates the human rights of thousands of Dominicans of Haitian descent, as has been charged.
The Commission traveled to the country at the invitation of the Dominican government. Even so, sectors of the government and the parasitic party apparatus, who live off the crumbs that fall from the heights of power, have unleashed a campaign to discredit the IACHR committee, arguing that it violates national sovereignty and its very presence is an act of interference in the internal affairs of the Dominican Republic.
Their arguments sound very similar to those raised by certain persons and by Trujillista propaganda in 1960, when the Dominican Republic was sanctioned and isolated by the Organization of American States (OAS) after it was proven that Rafael L. Trujillo participated physically and intellectually in an attempt that almost cost the life of then Venezuelan President Rómulo Betancourt.
If the government invited the Commission, it is obvious that there is no intervention into the country’s internal affairs.
Such an accusation fails for an additional basic reason: the Dominican Republic is a member of the IACHR and the OAS and that condition gives them rights, but also duties.
The phony nationalists, when they act on the logic of politics and not of rights, defame and hinder the work of the IACHR, seeking thus to kill both the messengers and the message they may be delivering.
Their arrogant and aggressive behavior is meant to hide the fear they feel when they realize they have been exposed as groups motivated by hate and racial discrimination, fear that increases when they learn that their ruling is legally indefensible. They know that the Dominican state will be condemned in all the international courts.
Even so, these tinhorn patriots, or rather cardboard patriots, continue attacking and demonizing those of us who defend the denationalized and oppose the aberrant ruling issued by the Constitutional Tribunal.
Besides calling us traitors and reminding us that “Duarte said death to the traitors,” now the diabolical figure of Vincho Castillo appears saying that our opposition to the 168/13 ruling is part of “an old plan, fusion (between Haiti and the RD as promoted by the US, Canada and France) but that there is a new international actor, drugs, the mafia.”
Listen carefully: this old shill, as always a Trujillista, who, according to Hatuey D’Camps, was almost killed in a house of female and male prostitution in Haiti, the lawyer for the worst causes against Dominican democracy, now says that serious intellectuals, the intelligent people, the country’s civil society organizations and progressive politics, etc, are linked to drug trafficking.
These guys are so crude that now a group of them are coming out questioning the nationality of Junot Díaz, one of the most famous writers in the world, born in Villa Juana, winner of the Pulitzer prize, who has dared to confront the infamous 168/13 ruling here and in the RD.
They attack, or try to attack, one of the world’s most consistent voices in defense of the best causes, who has always been on the side of the groups most oppressed, excluded and discriminated against by those who control international political and economic power.
They try to demonize someone like Junot who has shown on all the continents the best of Dominican nationality, in contrast with these groups of politicians and false journalists who have done so well at representing our country as one of those with the greatest level of corruption, of citizen insecurity, of a low educational level and the greatest influence of drug trafficking in public and private matters in the world.
With the fragile base their concept of national identity rests on shattered even more, now we see them spreading hate against this young writer who in the recent past they wanted to claim as their own, praising him as a Dominican and trying to take his literary successes into their false vision of nationality.
What these recalcitrant sectors refuse to accept is that national identity does not depend on a passport or on the total acceptance of the official definition of Dominicanidad, but on a set of values and feelings not subject to political convenience and much less on hatred, racism or xenophobia.
The strength of national identity is greater than a birth certificate, an identity card or a specific place in the national territory; it is, above all, a strong internal feeling of how I see myself and how I feel socially and culturally toward the people, in this case the Dominican people.
But since every bad thing can generate within itself positive things, with the 168/13 ruling a resistance movement has come to life against the blackmail that has dominated the Dominico-Haitian question, inside and outside the national territory, and that in the specific case of New York has led an extraordinary group of US-Dominican citizens to speak up in opposition to the ruling, but also to demonstrate the values of love, understanding and solidarity that distinguishes true Dominican nationality.
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