First of all, sorry for the quality. My camera was broken, so all I had available during my stay in Haiti was my phone. This was a part of my 5 day trip to Hispaniola after the New York Marathon. The flight from New York took about 3,5 hours, but I stepped into a whole different world.
The devastation from the 2010 earthquake was still very visible and I know I'm just an idealistic youth, but why do we allow this? Why do we keep pursuing a global capitalist economy when we know that this only increases the difference between rich and poor? I think it's because the elite consists of the materially rich people and we don't usually have to see these scenes with our own eyes. What happens near us is always easier to react to, and what happens far away is always easier to hide from. Why does the elite have to consist of these people? Does it? Just a thought.
Both the capitalist system and the communist system failed to make the elite's primary interest to do what's best for everyone. Is that even possible or are we humans too selfish at the bottom? That is to me the most important question in social/political science. How can we make it the elite's interest to do what's best for everyone? And by everyone I mostly mean those who do not hold any power. And hopefully not restricted by land borders because this only sustains the inequality on a global scale.
This photo was taken in Pétionville, a city in the hills above the capital Port-au-Prince. A city of even greater contrasts than the capital, but generally richer. I had found a guesthouse that seemed reliable and this is the view from my room. The experience I just had was probably the most unlikely and cool way to enter Haiti ever. I crossed the border from the Dominican Republic at the border post in Pedernales/Anse-à-Pitrès by foot and thought there would be buses or taxis to take me to the capital, but no. Some nice guys said they could drive me and my heavy suitcase on a motorcycle to the nearest village and they did. I was raining very heavily and this is when my camera broke down. However, I arrived in Thiotte and a car was going to take me to the capital. The car ride was supposed to take 3-4 hours. Huge mountain pass and bumpy road are the keywords. But after about 3 hours the jeep broke down and I had to sleep in the car together with four haitians and my luggage... The next morning the car was alright and we could drive the last bit to the capital, with majestic mountains on both sides. I slept two hours that night and I'll be the first to admit I was dead tired when arriving at the guesthouse. But my experience from the 26 hour stay in Haiti is that haitians are a proud people. They are much more relaxed and more open than the dominicans. It didn't take long before students on the way home from school would start speaking with you on the street asking you how you liked the country and how long you would stay there. All in all a great stay in Haiti although a tiring experience for me.
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worldcitizen (8472) 2014-07-01 10:59
It's nice to see a photo from Haiti, no matter which camera was used to take it. From this POV we can get a sense of how densely-populated the area is, and what types of houses there are. It sounds like you had quite an adventure. There are many Haitians living in my neighborhood, and they are hard-working and kind people. It's too bad there is still such poverty and suffering in their country.