Haitian family speaks out on President Trump's derogatory comments

1 year 8 months 6 days ago Friday, January 12 2018 Jan 12, 2018 Friday, January 12, 2018 3:55:00 PM CST January 12, 2018 in News
By: Justin Kollar, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Haitian Americans marked the anniversary of earthquake that devastated their homeland eight years ago, killing more than 200,000 people.

Their day of remembrance were overshadowed by President Trump's derogatory comments toward the historically impoverished island nation and other countries. 

Cliton Seide has been living in the United States on a student visa for the past six months. He is working on earning his PhD. in linguistics from the University of Missouri.

He said he is no longer surprised by the president's comments.

"We are a proud people," Seide said. "Our country does have struggles, but who doesn't. Haiti is a wonderful place."

Seide was in Port-au-Prince the day of the earthquake. His entire school was destroyed. Only he and six others survived.

"It was horrible," Seide said. "It's really not even something that I like to talk about."

Seide said, given the timing, the presidents remarks were especially disturbing.

Trump was reported to have said Thursday, "Why are we having all these people from s------e countries come here?"

Word of those remarks came from people at a meeting where Trump rejected a bipartisan deal on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

In all, over 440,000 people are currently living in the United States who were previously protected by DACA. The Trump administration has hinted it will not extend the program.

Trump has since denied he made the inflammatory comments.

He tweeted Friday, saying, "The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language I used. Never said anything derogatory about Haitians, other than Haiti is, obviously, a very poor and troubled country."

The United States is currently home to more than 500,000 Haitian immigrants, according to the latest census.  

Haiti was shattered by the 2010 earthquake and received billions of dollars from both the U.S. government and private donors.

Seide's son was born in the U.S., but Seide plans to move his family home as soon as he graduates. He hopes to help improve the quality of life in his native country through education.

"In order to advance as a people, it will take a united group. Money from foreign countries can only do so much" Seide said. "There are a lot of Haitians around the world that are well-educated. We must participate in the education of the country, to educate the people and to create jobs, infrastructure, so you can live better."

Seide said the people of Haiti are generally very welcoming, but if Trump visited, that may not be the case.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Police said they found seven shell casings in the southern part of the city late Thursday night. ... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, September 20 2019 Sep 20, 2019 Friday, September 20, 2019 1:02:00 AM CDT September 20, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - During the first week of Show Me Climate we've discussed many of the basics of our changing climate.... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 9:02:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in Climate
COLUMBIA — The Columbia community came together Thursday night to remember the life of a Columbia College student killed in... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 8:55:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - For the third straight year, the Capitol Avenue Historic District in Jefferson City is considered a "Place... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 8:22:47 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is sending highway patrol troopers and other state workers to St. Louis... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 7:29:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
WILLIAMSBURG — A woman running for a seat in the U.S. Congress said Callaway County Sheriff's Department wrongfully searched her... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 6:39:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - For investigators, finding Megan Schultz's likely remains in the Columbia landfill after only eight days of searching was... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 6:36:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — In an earlier story we discussed the difference between weather and climate . While they’re not the same... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 6:20:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in Continuous News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri health officials say the state has recorded its first vaping-related death. The Missouri... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 4:05:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA- One Columbia neighbor was left feeling uneasy Thursday after a burglary resulted in a death on her street. ... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 4:03:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
BOONVILLE - The Boonville Police Department took 30-year-old Johnathan Todd into custody on Thursday for possession of meth, marijuana, prescription-controlled... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 3:58:53 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
FULTON – Fulton community members and business owners are coming together to show their support for a family and their... More >>
12 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 2:56:00 PM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A federal judge has denied a request by Missouri to allow a ban on abortions after... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 10:21:00 AM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Jurors ruled against a teacher who alleged that she was fired from a Catholic school in... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 10:15:51 AM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
IBERIA - Police are investigating a threat of mass violence made by a student in Iberia R-V School District. ... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 9:53:00 AM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY - An Illinois man drowned at the Lake of the Ozarks Wednesday afternoon after falling into the water.... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, September 19 2019 Sep 19, 2019 Thursday, September 19, 2019 9:40:00 AM CDT September 19, 2019 in News
Global warming has often been used interchangeably with climate change. Well, they shouldn’t be, because they do not describe the... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, September 18 2019 Sep 18, 2019 Wednesday, September 18, 2019 10:50:00 PM CDT September 18, 2019 in Climate
COLUMBIA - Longtime MU professor and musicologist Dr. Michael Budds wiped tears from his eyes as MU alumna Symonne... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, September 18 2019 Sep 18, 2019 Wednesday, September 18, 2019 8:29:00 PM CDT September 18, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 72°
4am 71°
5am 70°
6am 69°
7am 70°