Talking Haiti on community radio last month

Good old-fashioned community radio stations are stepping up to the plate with in-depth Haiti coverage as mainstream attention continues to fade and falter.

Long-term journalists based here with the Miami Herald and Associated Press did almost the exact same story about Haiti’s World Cup Fever last month, after AFP did another. They have not covered physical harm against displaced Haitians (of which there are still around 2 million) by landowners, gangs, and neglect by organizations supposed to be distributing food, water, and shelter.

Besides the soccer articles, their output over the past month reads much like a list of press releases from various authorities on their plans for the country – Bill Clinton, the US Senate, the Haitian government, and international institutions. This news, generated in air-conditioned offices and upscale hotels, seems rather inconsequential to the everyday reality here in Port-au-Prince. Perhaps the assumption is that the average quake victim is poor and miserable as always and it’s not worth trying to explain why any more. (Reaching, the Miami Herald today published an astonishing piece claiming that Haiti’s tiny middle class is suffering as much or more as the vast poor majority.)

I didn’t author much work individually last month, but I’m keeping busy (trying with others to stop camp evictions as they happen, at times) and working towards some worthwhile longer-form stories. Glad to participate in several radio interviews and stories last month concerned mainly with the conditions facing the Haitian poor. Listen below.

June 28 on Flashpoints Radio in the Bay Area

Listen here (Direct MP3).

June 19 on WBAI’s Haiti the Struggle Continues in New York City

Listen here (MP3).

June 14-23: Reports on Free Speech Radio News and American Public Media’s ‘The Story’

A radio version of my last written story about camps threatened by landowners aired on FSRN.

I helped produce interview segments with a homeless Haitian street vendor and family in Leogane for The Story, which airs on dozens of stations nationwide.

June 4 on CKUT’s Off the Hour in Montreal

Probing interview with host Chris on demonstrations against Monsanto and Preval, MINUSTAH, and what the political landscape looks like going forward.

Listen here (MP3).

I also spoke with host Wilbur Larch on WUSB 90.1 FM in Stony Brook, New York on June 12, but can’t find it online anywhere. We discussed questions surrounding the American Red Cross’ millions of dollars raised and their hardly visible presence here in Haiti, among other subjects.

(Switched up this site’s design a bit, let me know if you see any bugs.)

1 thought on “Talking Haiti on community radio last month”

  1. I hope I’m not being redundant, but I still don’t quite understand your comments about the commercial press of the United States (the “mainstream media”). When has it ever been different? There’s some dramatic event somewhere in the world, they cover it heavily for a while, in their inimitable superficial way. A week or two later it’s old news, there’s something more exciting somewhere else, so that’s where they go. And the old news is left to the odd-balls and the crazies who think that history is real and really matters, that things don’t just end abruptly and that everything that happens has repercussions everywhere and for a very long time.

    If you have a plan for making the commercial press cover Haiti in an intelligent, responsible, adequate way, then by all means, carry it out. I wish you well and I’ll do what I can to help you do it. But it would be a revolutionary change and it would not be easy. It would take a major conspiracy.

    In the meantime, we odd-balls and crazies still have our own sources of news and commentary, as we always have, and they should be nurtured. There are some excellent radio programs, mostly local, and some good websites specifically on Haiti, yours, Haitianalysis, the IJDH. And there are many others with a broader focus. There is as well my own humble effort, http://lo-de-alla.org, with what I hope are accurate and readable translations from as much of Latin America as I can manage, including Haiti.

    Thank you for your work and I wish you the best.

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