International scholars, journalists and cultural critics have come together to present France's President Nicolas Sarkozy with an open letter asking France to pay Haiti's "independence debt" to help the country recover from the devastation of the earthquake. The debt was imposed on Haiti nearly 200 years ago after it won its independence and became the first free black republic in the Western Hemisphere. The New York Times now estimates the debt to be worth $22 billion, and the letter signers want it repaid to help aid reconstruction costs after January’s devastating earthquake. Sounds like a reasonable request to us.
Read more at Colorlines.
—Nsenga K. Burton