As we head toward the Democratic National Convention, I often hear the question, “What does Bernie want?” Wrong question. The right question is what the 12 million Americans who voted for a political revolution want. And the answer is: They want real change in this country, they want it now and they are prepared to take on the political cowardice and powerful special interests which have prevented that change from happening.
Elections should be the season of hope. Steve Biko declared that our fight was for an open society, a society where the color of a person’s skin will not be a point of reference or departure, a society in which each person has one vote. We have the vote – but the political parties do not represent the aspirations of the people. Millions of Black people remain poor and oppressed. When we organize outside of the ANC, we are violently repressed.
The 1987 Constitution has not only thwarted a return to a dictatorship, but also prevented foreign concerns from buying the country wholesale from officials of the executive branch. One of the proposed amendments to the 1987 Constitution stated: “From now on, until the municipal elections of 2013, all Haiti’s mayors will be replaced by ‘Municipal Agents’ designated by the central government.”
Leading members of Haiti’s bourgeoisie tried to turn the Haitian police force into their own private army, according to a secret U.S. Embassy cable provided to Haïti Liberté by the media organization WikiLeaks.
On April 4, the Haitian government announced that Michel Martelly won the recent fraudulent “elections” imposed on Haiti by the United States, France and Canada, the so-called “international community,” and sanctioned by the United Nations. Haiti now finds itself at a crossroads.
Growing evidence suggests the West, led by France, engineered a political and military coup in Cote d’Ivoire to re-colonize that country. The president of Gambia says, "Western neo-colonialist sponsored agents in Africa ... are ready to walk on thousands of dead bodies to the presidency."
One of the stories least reported has been the one about Haitians organizing for themselves. This is one woman’s story of how she, her family and the people in the various communities in which she works came together collectively to care for each other’s needs and how that struggle has become the foundation of a new movement of the poor for change in education and the material lives of women and men – a struggle for dignity.
Obama denounced the recent “elections” in Burma as “neither free nor fair.” The Haitian “elections” are also neither free nor fair. The largest party, Fanmi Lavalas, is excluded, as it has been in every election since President Jean-Bertrand Aristide was ousted in 2004; 1.3 million earthquake victims are displaced; and cholera has already taken 1,600 lives.
Proposition 11 in 2008 gave the redistricting responsibility to a 14-member Citizens Redistricting Commission that draws district lines after the Census. Applications are available through Feb. 16, 2010, and the commissioners are paid $300 per day.