Friday, February 05, 2010

Care in Chaos


Those terrible Baptist, do-gooder/up to no-gooders! Stealing helpless children and spiriting them across the border from Haiti to the Dominican Republic. You may have seen the story earlier this week of the American religious group which was stopped, then charged with kidnapping Haitian children. The question was whether they would be prosecuted in the U.S. or Haiti. If you were like me I was not impressed by what they had done, especially knowing the concerns about opportunistic gangs taking children for human trafficking.

Well, the story isn't quite so simple. In yesterday's Globe and Mail there was an article about the desperate conditions in the village where these children are from. Already poor, the homes and vegetable plots of families were destroyed. Parents asked the Baptist group to take their children to safer locations, even though they struggled with the implications of separation. Some of the parents were injured and unable to care for their children, so they felt that leaving would mean they received food and care.

Was it a good idea for the Baptists to take these kids? Probably not. But this situation reminds us that in the midst of chaos is can be very difficult to know what is best. This Christian group assumed they were acting with compassion and made poor choices.

What was your reaction to this story? How do you feel now?

4 comments:

IanD said...

I've been rolling this one around in my head since the story broke, and it's been quite difficult to arrive at whether or not what's happened here is right or wrong.

Ultimately, one's got to figure that this group of people knew it was assuming a massive risk in carrying out its' plans.

Laura said...

As I read that article last evening, I was deeply struck by the notion that these parents asked for their kids to be taken away, as they saw any life to be better than what they are living. Whether right or wrong, I don't know the true motives of this Baptist group but to think that parents are so hopeless for their families future that "anywhere but here, with us" is an agreed to option for their beloved children. What a sobering image of how terrible their lives seem and are. I can't even begin to imagine...

Nancy said...

When I first heard the story I was upset, then, like Laura and David, I read the article in the Globe yesterday and wondered....
How heart breaking to have to make that decision about loved ones. Maybe the parents making these decisions for their children are heroes, in that they believe they are giving their children a better life, one in which the children might live and thrive. (This idea comes from having read a book about adopted children from China seeing their birth mothers as heroes, as they chose life over death for their girls)
So many emotions, and no answers as to what was right or wrong. I, like Laura, can't begin to imagine....

lionlamb said...

One of the staff at the nursery school here at St. Paul's has been host to a little boy for the African nation of Sierra Leone. He came to have surgery and has thrived with her family. He has a family back home and they love their son. But it is a very poor nation and so they have given permission for him to be adopted, although it doesn't seem likely for political reasons.

It really doesn't occur to us until we hear these stories that the most loving act would be relinquishing the one we love. Thanks for your responses.