Editor's note: Dr. John "Bull" Durham of Flagstaff recently returned from another mission to Haiti with Northern Arizona Volunteer Medical Corps. Below are his comments on President Trump's reported vulgarity in reference to Haiti and African countries. At bottom are comments to our Daily Sun Facebook page and our website, plus an update from Durham via email.
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Janvier Douze (January 12), a reference to a day that will remain a dagger in the heart of anyone who knows Haiti. Eight years ago today Haiti suffered one of the most destructive natural disasters that has struck humanity in modern history. As far as we know 200,000 to 300,000 died with millions displaced from life as they knew it. In the 1700’s she was the breadbasket of the world.
Donald Trump told you yesterday that Haiti is a “Shithole”. I doubt he has been there, I have as have many of you. It is not a shithole. It is a country of vibrant, proud, resilient people who have struggled against the onslaught of natural disasters and foreign interference that has helped to keep the country in a state of perpetual impoverishment. These comments the day before the 8th anniversary of this heinous day defy any sense of decency or grasp of reality.
Today I ask that you keep Haiti in your hearts. Almost every Haitian can tell you where they were on that day and they can each tell you of the horror they survived; their own injuries, the loved ones killed, the experience of death, dismemberment and loss. My eight year old daughter Anabelle thankfully does not remember; she was 6 months old. She did tell us today that she was thinking “dark thoughts”. She could not tell us more. The effects on her will perhaps become more clear with time.
Thank you for your support of our work both locally and globally. Today I will thank you specifically for your support of our work in Haiti. Though not more important than our all inclusive work, today it deserves our attention.
If you are interested I encourage you to see Anderson Cooper’s comments regarding Haiti aired last night on CNN
I also encourage you to view a video created by Michael Collier following our recent mission trip to Haiti.
John Bull Durham, MD
--Lori Black Crystal
Nice contribution to Haitians. I hope the world someday will forgive us for the s-hole who speaks with such racism and hatred.
--Judith Reed Diver
Thank you Dr. John Durham for helping the people of Haiti! That is far kinder and nicer thing than the other commenters on here with their tea party attitudes have ever done for anybody
Haiti is a dump.
I thought this was an ARIZONA news source ? Why is it that you feel the need to post national/international so called "news" ? Do your job post on state related issues like flaky flake or war criminal John McSwine. Maybe your just a copy and paster ?
Keven Tomlinson, because folks such as yourself need to know that there is a world outside of Redneck strongholds! Donald Trump is destroying America and trying to overturn the 1st Amendment. Trump lackeys, aka the 33% Base, think this is fine and dandy. Keep up the good work Arizona Daily Sun.
--David A. Williams Thank you Dr Durham and your team for the great work you do.
What a shame we have such a foul mouth, racist, ignorant individual in a leadership position in the United States.
I have never been to Haiti, but I have read enough about it to know that it is a "Sh&! hole" with high crime, economic problems, and everything else that comes with those problems. I feel for the people that live there but I do not feel that the USA should bring in anyone and everyone that lives in a country with problems. I just can't believe that some people feel that the USA should welcome in anyone from anywhere, that is not as fortunate as many living here. I say "many" because not everyone here is fortunate, look at the growing homeless population and the amount of people on government financial aid. How much more do we want to add to the burden paid by the tax payers? Many people in our country are beginning to lack the drive to achieve and make good lives for themselves due to the ease in getting financial aid from the government and watching everyone else, including illegal immigrants and legal immigrants getting aid easily.
Just a follow up to my post, since I couldn't figure out how to edit. Since some people feel that the term "Sh&! hole" is an attack against the people, I just wanted to add that I am in no means saying that all of the people that live in Haiti are bad. I know that there are many good and wonderful people there. I am referring to the living conditions, the economic situation, the high crime, and poor infrastructure.
Way to go Bull. Thank you for all you do for the people of Haiti!
Trump was spot on with this one…
By John "Bull" Durham, in an email to the editor:
I have received calls already today from several including Anne Kirkpatrick. I have received multiple email responses all in support of the comments I made and all expressing sadness at the comments Trump made. I think many of us feel more and more abandoned by our leader who continues to demonstrate an ability to put fear and distaste in his fellow countrymen. This is such an insult to the world especially to Africa and to Haiti. Haiti little needs any more negativity from her neighbor the US.
I will be interested to see the readers comments. Thanks for posting this as I believe it is important that we do not forget!
Many kind thanks