We all have opportunities to question the system, and today, I'll step to the Q&A microphone.
Like millions around the world, I stayed glued to my television, newspaper, computer, radio, and every other media outlet to witness the aftermath of the devastating earthquake that struck Haiti last month. I was appalled, astounded, and unnerved at not seeing a single Haitian government representative, diplomat, or appointed leader take center stage to advise on what was going on from their point of view, what any immediate actions could be to stabailize the city (country), and continue with the essential components of recovery. Haiti is poor. I get that - but there was a government in place, and that even though the walls that housed government offices fell, there were still appointed leaders somewhere not leading.
A month and a half later, I'm seeing reports about how leaders are coming out of the woodworks around the issue of who-signed-what to be sure that Haitian orphans could be relocated to the United States and placed in adoptive homes. Just in a NY Times article today Ambassador Raymond Joseph (Haiti’s envoy to the United States) and an aide to Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive are both responding to a scenario in which 2 Pennsylvania women moved 54 children (all of which were orphaned in Haiti before the earthquake, 12 of which may or may not have had relatives who could care for them) to a "5,000-square-foot cottage at the Holy Family Institute just outside Pittsburgh."
While illegal child-trafficking and kidnap is a very serious issue that should receive adequate attention, penalty, and punishment, I wonder why I'm hearing from Haitian leaders only now, and in response to this. The earthquake happened January 12. The relocation of the children occurred on January 18. Within those 6 days, neither Ambassador Joseph nor Prime Minister Bellerive chatted with Anderson Cooper; I didn't see them making their way through make-shift villages; nor did I see appeals directly from them to the international community on how we can best respond to what happend on their home turf.
I'll repeat - child trafficking and kidnapping are very important issues and should receive full review and consideration. However, when Haiti has explosive death tolls, plaguing safety issues, security concerns, a seemingly absent government, and excruciatingly painful poverty that only reached more epic proportions after this natural disaster, focusing on the unintended adoption of 12 children seems asinine, inappropriate, and very unwise.