Religious Right Leader says Haiti "swore a pact to the devil"
People For the American Way President Michael B. Keegan today condemned a statement made by Religious Right leader Pat Robertson, who said that the nation of Haiti has been cursed ever since it "swore a pact to the Devil."
In discussing the earthquake, which the UN says has killed thousands of people, Robertson said:
And you know Kristi, something happened a long time ago in Haiti and people might not want to talk about it. They were under the heel of the French, uh you know Napoleon the third and whatever. And they got together and swore a pact to the Devil. They said we will serve you if you'll get us free from the French. True Story. And so the Devil said "OK, it's a deal." And they kicked the French out. You know, the Haitians revolted and got themselves free. But ever since they have been cursed by one thing after the other, desperately poor. That island is Hispaniola is one island. It's cut down the middle. On one side is Haiti, on the other side is the Dominican republic. Dominican Republic is prosperous, healthy, full of resorts, etc.. Haiti is in desperate poverty. Same island. Uh, 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.
Michael B. Keegan, president of People For the American Way, issued the following statement:
"Pat Robertson's comments about the victims of this earthquake are reprehensible.; Unfortunately, they fit right in with his history of mean spirited attacks accusing his opponents of causing natural disasters and terrorism.; To blame the victims of this disaster for what they've been through is appalling.; Regrettably, Pat Robertson can't be written off as an eccentric aberration of the right-wing-he's still a leading figure in the conservative movement.;
"At a time when our attention should be focused on helping the victims of this disaster, Robertson's comments are beyond the pale."