Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Shorter Pat Robertson: Blacks Were Better Off As Slaves

Lyrad altered me to this in comments below and it's now the rage throughout the blogosphere, but if you haven't seen it, here is Pat Robertson's response to the Haiti earthquake:

ROBERTSON: [S]omething happened a long time ago in Haiti and people might not want to talk about it. They were under the heel of the French. Napoleon the Third and whatever. And they got together and swore a pact to the devil. They said, “We will serve you if you get us free from the prince.” True story. And so the devil said, “OK, it’s a deal.” They kicked the French out, the Haitians revolted and got themselves free. But ever since, they have been cursed by one thing after the other, desperately poor. That island of Hispaniola is one island. It’s cut down the middle, on the one side is Haiti, on the other side is the Dominican Republic. The Dominican Republic is prosperous, healthy, full of resorts, etc. Haiti is in desperate poverty. Same island. They need to have, and we need to pray for them, a great turning to God. And out of this tragedy I’m optimistic something good may come. But right now, we’re helping the suffering people and the suffering is unimaginable.

I am offended in so many ways. It's inhumane and racist and all that.

But let's be clear--Pat Robertson is saying that blacks were better off in slavery. He's saying that a slave revolt succeeded because of a pact with the devil. Does anyone really doubt that Robertson believes this.

He's also as woefully ignorant of history as he is of everything else. First, Napoleon III? Really. Second, Haiti has had terribly bad luck. But it's not about Haitian inferiority or a pact with Satan. Rather, Haiti's troubles stem in no small part from the United States and France looking to isolate the nation around the world for almost 200 years; the U.S. because it feared a slave revolt of its own and couldn't believe black people could rule themselves and France because they were angry to lose their colony.

After all, it's not like the U.S. ever supported any horrible dictators who turned Haiti into hell on earth or anything...