Here’s Jay Smooth on Haiti, history and responsibility.
I disagree with Jay Smooth a little bit on this one. He talks about the depth of our (by which I think he means the States’, but could probably also mean the world’s) responsibility to Haiti. He says that the history of Haiti as a nation of heroes deepens the responsibility to go to their aid.
But even without history, I think our (and I mean the world’s) responsibility to go to the aid of the people of Haiti is absolute and complete and limitless, regardless of history. Essential to recognise history, absolutely essential. But aid should never be conditional on anything other than human need.
If we say, “we played a role in this, therefore we have a responsibility,” we can also say, “we played no role, therefore it’s not our problem”.
More to the point, Jay reminds us to do whatever we can to help, with which I totally agree.