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Miami Haitian-American Artists Sound Off On Donald Trump's Racist Behavior

"It's sad to see someone so insensitive towards a country and a culture that plays a major role in black history."

At a time where the people of Haiti are battling systematic oppression, American leaders have only given more struggle to the journey. The most damning has been President Donald Trump take on Haiti and the 54 countries of Africa he used expletives to describe.

Response on the opposite end of the conversation has been swift, with African immigrants rising above the slurs and Haitian-Americans coming together to show their pride. Those who've been afflicted by the Trump family for decades have been through with his hateful rhetoric and antics for quite some time, especially in the world of music. We reached out to several Haitian artists and revered names in America's largest Haitian community–Miami, and asked them to reflect on Trump's hateful comments made in the White House.

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Steph Lecor

"As a Haitian-American woman, I am completely disgusted by 45’s aka Donald Trump’s comments towards Haitians and Africans. But let’s face it guys, I’m not surprised. This is a man who’s been blatantly disrespectful towards women and has made numerous racist comments towards after other race other than his own. I don’t feel like this man is worth anymore conversation. I just want to know when is he going to get impeached."

Zoey Dollaz

"It’s just more of a sad situation than a mad situation to see someone that’s so insensitive towards a country and a culture that plays a major role in black history. Haitian people are one of the first people on the face of this Earth with independence. To hear him say that, you just gotta teach yourself to ignore the ignorance but also speak on it because most people are going to be afraid to say something. But Donald Trump, that 'shithole' you’re talking about, has a lot of strong people from there. There are a lot of great people from there and some of those people from there are actually some of the people who voted for you as well."

Supa Cindy

https://www.instagram.com/p/BdjdnKWAiGg/

"When I first saw the quote that the president (and I use that term lightly) said what he said, I was definitely pissed off. But as I kept watching CNN and watching the quote over and over again and actually hearing them say 'shithole' with no bleep, I felt  angry but also more sad. The fact that the president of the free world is saying this ironically before the anniversary of the earthquake that killed over 200,000 people in Haiti..first of all, Haiti is the most beautiful country I've ever seen. Being of both Haitian and Dominican descent, Haiti’s people are so resilient. They build something out of nothing, and when it gets torn down they rebuild.

As far as the Haitians that are in the United States, Trump brought his ass to Lil Haiti during his campaign and asked for the Haitian community’s help and smiled at the Haitian Arts Cultural center where he sat there amongst the community’s leaders and shook hands and acted like he supported a community of people that work so hard to live and survive in the United States. So for him to say what he said just shows his ignorance. He’s heartless."

Billy Blue

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bd1oKYKAXSC/

"First off, he didn’t just say Haiti. He mentioned a lot of places like Africa as a whole and other places. We have a president who speaks his mind. Donald Trump is like one of them dudes who’s blatantly honest, and you gotta tell him, 'Listen, this is not were you be honest. This is where you need to sugarcoat,' and the way of his sugarcoating just seems so flawed. Now one thing about these 'shithole' countries is this: those are the most educated people and children. I come from Haiti. I’ve stayed in Haiti almost nine years of my life so can’t nobody tell me about Haiti. I remember being in Haiti and watching kids at the park from 6 am. to 7 a.m., from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. until all the way until 1 in the morning STUDYING! Haiti and these 'shithole' countries have kids that sit here and memorize a whole 50-page book. And they will recite it word-for-word. We have our good parts. We have our beautiful parts. I’m talking about parts that are so outstanding. Then it’s like where there’s rich, there’s poor. Everyone knows that.

To sit here and hear somebody call an entire country a 'shithole' for the simple fact that THEY couldn’t acquire the same mountains that the Clintons went and bought due to red sand that was need by China and Canada. In case you didn’t know this secret, the Clintons own a lot of mountains in Haiti. I also believe they found natural gas and oil was found in Haiti recently, and they’re trying to keep it a secret, but the people know. Yeah, a lot of y’all know know that Donald Trump wanted land in Haiti. He wanted a lot of the natural resources that were discovered in Haiti. He wanted that. He wanted him and his investors to be part of that and they didn’t get that chance. So of course Haiti is going to be a 'shithole' country to Donald Trump. Of course it’s going to be a personal vendetta towards the Haitians, and it’s bad. It’s f**kery. I’m talking from personal research, by having friends who work in the government, and knowing these things myself. I’ve witnessed it."

Prez P

https://www.instagram.com/p/BcnCFHTnQEU/?taken-by=prezp_becampin

"Yo man Trump is doofy. I’m not going to let him get to me, or let him bring me down. He’s just another bougie, rich motherf**ker. Can’t nobody discredit Haiti bro. Haiti as a whole has been through more sh*t than anyone, and has overcame more than anyone. Those people in Haiti are some of the strongest people you’ll meet in life. To hear him refer to it as a 'shithole' place, it just makes me believe that he’s got a 'shithole' for a mouth."

Michael Brun

"I grew up hearing that Haiti was a sh*thole my whole life. The narrative of Haiti didn't change last week, it's a narrative that has been forced upon our country for decades, by outsiders, by the media, by the world at large and by a bigoted president. Negativity reinforces negativity, and to an impressionable youth who don’t know their true worth, these words became reality. But instead of feeling pity or remorse, myself and a new generation of Haitians saw it as a call to action.

A call to reconnect with the principles in which our country was founded, principles based in unity, bravery and respect. A call to elevate our standards in education, and cultural preservation, and to create a new paradigm for our nation and our youth. A call to take the narrative of our country into our own hands.

We will determine how people perceive our country. A country that served as The Mother of the Americas, who’s people liberated themselves from colonial rule in 1804 and aided both the United States and the rest of the Caribbean in their battles for freedom. A narrative of failure is not Haiti's national anthem, it is 'La Dessalinienne', an anthem retelling the Haitian Revolution and the mantra that unity and strength of mind can overcome insurmountable odds. These are the stories that must be heard by the youth of Haiti. The stories of perseverance, ambition and responsibility for one’s country. Today a new generation of artists, empowered by technology, is taking control of the languages of hip-hop, and electronic music, infusing them with Haitian culture and traditional rhythms, and speaking to millions of people in Haiti and around the globe.

We are writing our own Haitian anthems. These are the voices that will be heard by the next generation of Haitians and these sounds will define Haiti to the rest of the world in the years to come."

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African-Americans Are At A Greater Risk To Contract Coronavirus

Racial disparities in coronavirus deaths are now coming to light due to the overwhelming amount of African-Americans dying from COVID-19.

Weeks after warnings from lawmakers and health officials, US Surgeon General Jerome Adams confirmed Tuesday (April 7) that African-Americans were at greater risk of contracting the novel coronavirus. "I and many black Americans are at higher risk for COVID, which is why we need everyone to do their part to slow the spread,” he said. Adams explained that Black Americans with pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease are more prone to having the virus in addition to lack of access to proper health care.

In an op-ed for The New York Times titled "The Racial Time Bomb in the Covid-19 Crisis," Charles M. Blow compared the growing concern to the early days of the H.I.V./AIDS crisis affecting people of color. "On some level, H.I.V. is ravaging the South because Southern states have made a policy decision not to care in a sufficient way because the people suffering are poor and black," he said while pointing out the stark similarities in how both life-changing moments haven't provided the demographic with the right resources.

Numbers between race and ethnicity for the virus are limited but Stat News reports Black people in Illinois, made up 29% of confirmed cases and 41% of deaths as of Monday morning, but only make up 15% of the state’s population. ProPublica also points out how Black people make up nearly half of the 941 cases in Milwaukee County and 81% of its 27 deaths–but the population is 26% African-American.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention distributes data on age, gender, and location of COVID-19 patients but not their race or ethnicity. On Tuesday, CDC spokesman Scott Pauley responded to the data about race and ethnicity around the coronavirus. “Unfortunately, case report forms are often missing important data, including race and ethnicity," he said. "To address this and other data gaps, supplementary surveillance systems are being stood up to better capture ethnicity and race data, as well as other key demographic or clinical information.”

In a letter written by Sens. Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren with  Ayanna Pressley and Robin L. Kelly to Health and Human Services (HHS), the group called for the correct information to avoid the gap from getting larger.

“The C.D.C. is currently failing to collect and publicly report on the racial and ethnic demographic information of patients tested for and affected by Covid-19," the letter reads. "Our concerns echo those from some physicians: that decisions to test individuals for the novel coronavirus may be ‘more vulnerable to the implicit biases that every patient and medical professional carry around with them,’ potentially causing ‘black communities and other underserved groups … [to] disproportionately mis[s] out on getting tested for Covid-19. Although Covid-19 does not discriminate along racial or ethnic lines, existing racial disparities and inequities in health outcomes and health care access may mean that the nation’s response to preventing and mitigating its harms will not be felt equally in every community.”

It was also announced New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and Melissa DeRosa, the top aide for Gov. Andrew Cuomo, promised to release data that reflects ethnicity and race as well. But as DeRosa revealed, hospitals in the Albany area haven't reported on the race of COVID-19 victims.

“The hospitals actually don’t report the race information directly to the state,” said DeRosa via The New York Post. “So what we end up doing on the back-end is calling the coroners’ offices around the state, after the death has been reported, so there has been a lag.“We understand people want that information. We want that information, too.”

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Instagram Shuts Down Tory Lanez’s ‘Quarantine Radio’ Show

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The Toronto native is blocked from using Instagram until April 14. “I can’t go on right now they won’t let me… they [don’t] want me to win damn b,” Lanez captioned an Instagram post detailing the weeklong digital quarantine.

He also encouraged fans to spread the hashtag #FreeTory until he’s allowed back on Instagram Live.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

THIS IS ME CURRENTLY .... 😭😭😢😢😢 even if I wanted to ..... I won’t be back on quarantine radio till the 14th ..... 😪😪😥 ... EVERYBODY HASHTAG #FreeTory SO I CAN GET OUT OF HERE MAN !!!! lmao Instagram stop hating . We can be friends man ! 📸: @midjordan

A post shared by torylanez (@torylanez) on Apr 7, 2020 at 3:51pm PDT

Although Lanez created a separate Quarantine Radio account, the plan to hop back on Instagram Live was abruptly foiled after reaching 100,000 viewers, he explained in a follow-up post.

View this post on Instagram

 

Stay tuned...

A post shared by torylanez (@torylanez) on Apr 7, 2020 at 3:09pm PDT

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HOWEVER ..... THE NEW TORONTO 3 COMES OUT IN 2 DAYS ...... AND I AM SPITTING ON THAT !!!!!!!! 😈🔥😈🔥😈🔥😈🔥😈

— Tory Lanez (@torylanez) April 7, 2020

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Rikers Island Inmate Dies From Complications Of COVID-19

An inmate at Rikers Island awaiting a parole hearing has died from COVID-19 complications, reports several news outlets, including New York Times.

Michael Tyson, 53, had been jailed on Rikers Island since Feb.28. On March 26, Tyson had been moved from the Anna M. Kross Center on Rikers Island to Bellevue Hospital, where he died from COVID-19. Tyson’s name was among the 100 detainees from The Bronx held on parole violations for whom the Legal Aid Society has been seeking immediate release, via a lawsuit filed in Bronx Supreme Court on April 3.

“This tragedy would have been entirely avoidable if only Governor Cuomo had directed [the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS)] to act decisively from the outset of this epidemic to release incarcerated New Yorkers who, like Mr. Tyson, were especially vulnerable to the virus,” Tina Luongo, the attorney-in-charge of the Criminal Defense Practice at the Legal Aid Society, said in a press statement.

Tyson was one the 100 inmates named in a lawsuit filed in the Bronx Supreme Court by the organization on April 3. The lawsuit claims that inmates are being held for non-criminal parole violations. Names of individuals in the lawsuit are either elders or have underlying health issues. Tyson was listed as among “the highest risk group” due to his age and unspecified health issues, according to a letter cited therein from Correctional Health Services.

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TIME also reports that a 273 inmates on Rikers Island have tested positive for the virus. Also, 321 jailers and 53 health professionals within NYC's jail system have tested positive for COVID-19, and four jailers have died.

During a press conference, Mayor Bill De Blasio said that 900 inmates have been released from NYC's jail system, with more releases in the works.

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