First blog post

This is the post excerpt.


There are many diverse forces at play in the world that directly impact the quality of our lives, our pocketbooks, personal freedoms and the environment. This blog is my sincere attempt to make sense of world events as they unfold before our eyes. Feel free to discuss and comment.

Petishon na Reina pa muhé i hende pretu no vota pasombra nan ta bobo: ki lès nos por saka?

Un grupo pudiente di hòmber ‘blanku’, a manda un karta pa Reina Wilhelmina na 1938 pa no duna derechi di voto na muhé i hende pretu pasombra nan no tabata madurá intelektualmente pa vota. P’e grupo, diskriminashon tabata hustifiká.

Kiko tabata e motivashon? Nos promé Kiesreglement (1936) a hasi posibel pa promé biaha vota pa 10 (di 15) miembro di Staten na 1937. Hòmber di 25 aña òf mas, ku un entrada mensual f 1,200 òf mas, ku a paga belasting i tabatin 7 aña di Uitgebreid Lager Onderwijs, por a vota. Solamente 2,100 hòmber di un poblashon total di 90,000, a vota na 1937.

Dòktor a bira e bos kontra di e diskriminashon aki. Pero, den hopi sektor, asta su partido, Curaçaose Roomsch Katolieke Partij (CRKP), tabata pensa ku e pueblo lo no ta kla pa e tipo di emansipashon polítiko aki. Apesar di kontratempu, Staten a bai di akuerdo ku algun kambio chikí ku a pèrmití mas hòmber vota.

E firmantenan di e karta ya menshoná, tabata razu ku Staten a aprobá e kambionan den Kiesreglement i ta pidi Reina riba 29 òktober 1938 pa destruí e desishon di Staten. Permití hende bobo vota lo ta peligroso pa demokrasia. Ta rechasá e petishon riba 14 febrüari 1939.

Mi artíkulo no ta simplemente un pida historia. Despues di e lucha pa derechi igual den pasado, lo bo kere ku nos, desendiente di víktimanan di diskriminashon, sigur lo sa pa no diskriminá un minoria basá riba preferensia seksual. Awe e poderoso iglesia i sektanan kristian ta usa plaka brutu pa infuensiá opinion i Fòrti pa ninga e minoria LGBTQ+ derechi humano. Meskos ku 80 aña pasá nan tambe tin un hustifikashon ku nan ta saka foi un buki. Doloroso ta ku meimei di esnan pro-diskriminashon, tin hende ku ta yama nan mes ‘Gomista’.

Awe mayoria ta husga ku tabata robes di lucha kontra derechi igual di muhé i hende pretu firmando un karta 80 aña pasá pa Reina. Awor, tin ku warda 80 aña pa realisá kon hipókrita i robes nos ta awe pa deskriminá i ninga derechi igual pa un i tur?

Colombo, Sri Lanka

Fuente: Archivo Nashonal

When it comes to our neighbors we don’t care that much

Next June, the 9th Summit of the Americas (the Summit), will take place in Los Angeles bringing together leaders and stakeholders from the countries of North, South, Central America, and the Caribbean promoting cooperation, and inclusive economic growth based on shared democratic values.

But, we won’t be represented. Unfortunately, we barely pay attention to or make an effort to join such regional or hemisphere-wide gatherings. Our myopic decision-makers are simply too consumed with The Hague.

In an earlier article1, I mentioned some topics worth discussing with the U.S. and the region: climate change; pandemics; corresponding banks, and commerce. It’s timely since the U.S. intends to give its allies in Latin America, and the Caribbean, more attention. And, it’s expanding the U.S. Consulate (activities) in Curaçao. Disengaging allies has empowered China in our hemisphere and the U.S. knows it.

This is not the first time I’ve suggested being more engaged with our region. I recently approached a Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) to find out whether Curaçao is excluded from participation in the Summit because of its constitutional status.

He told me that whilst generally only full members of the Organization of American States (OAS) can participate in the Summit, non-independent states (like us) do have some level of participation through a relationship with an OAS observer country, in this case, the Netherlands. This doesn’t mean a seat at the Summit table but can provide some level of presence.

A second option is through the parallel civil society, and private sector (NGO) tracks that make up the Summit universe of activities. 

It may be too late this time around, but Government and NGOs should follow up with the U.S. Consulate General and The Hague to look into possibilities to link up with these alternative participation methods. If not today, next time. The point is that we can’t afford to sit idly by when it comes to our region.

Colombo, Sri Lanka


This is how we lost our autonomy

We are living proof that our inability to govern ourselves leads to a loss of autonomy. It doesn’t depend on our status within the Kingdom. Scores of independent countries are suffering the same fate. Take Sri Lanka. This country was lured into accepting cheap (Chinese) loans that went to finance shady projects like an airport in the President’s hometown that’s now abandoned and serves as a long-term aircraft parking. It took the Covid tragedy to expose these bad choices. Today inflation is sky-high, there’s no money to import fuel and food and the country cannot pay off its debts.

I believe that the majority of people in Curaçao understand that our problems cannot be ascribed to The Hague. Yet, I get it. it’s easier to create an outside enemy than accept responsibility and change our ways. It can’t be a surprise that some local dinosaurs insist on a conflict model with the Hague because they can financially benefit and/or boost up relevancy. Most of them always have.

The main problem we are facing -if you believe in long-term development and wellbeing- is not the lack of money. We lack capacity, strong institutions, and the right persons on the job. It’s also about making our regulatory frameworks flexible, modern, and our workforce smart and competitive to be able to adjust to changes and be globally competitive.

There is no silver bullet, yet we’ve been betting on ridiculous projects such as ‘one-thousand hungry cows’, a Chinese-designed Las Vegasish strip, a space industry, and whatnot. We need to get our act together and start governing like adults. It’s time to tell the naked truth: without a deal that seriously invests in capacity building and reforms the future is bleak. We will be doomed to depend on others to do what we know we should be doing ourselves.

Colombo, Sri Lanka

Colombia is now Non-Nato Ally, next in line: Mexico

By: Joseph Bouchard/Global Americans

On March 10, the Biden administration announced  Colombia would become a major non-NATO ally (MNNA). The administration proclaimed that the United States and Colombia enjoy a “unique and close relationship.” Becoming an MNNA is a rare status only granted to some of the United States’ closest partners and allies, including Israel, Australia, Japan, and Brazil. 

Riding the momentum of the Colombian designation, the U.S. should also add Mexico to its shortlist. Mexico and the U.S. have enjoyed remarkably close relations for decades, on many fronts. The two countries share one of the ten longest borders in the world, with a continuous movement of goods and people across the boundary. 

Despite its interconnectedness with the United States, Mexico has yet to achieve MNNA status. This is especially surprising considering countries like Mexico and others in Latin America experienced a second Pink Tide—a wave of electoral victories for left-wing populist leaders. The swift change towards left-wing populism possibly challenges the U.S. position in its own backyard against China and Russia, its other great-power competitors in the region.

On trade, the United States and Mexico share a trilateral agreement—the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement —with a trade balance totaling over USD $615  billion in annual exports and imports, making Mexico the U.S.’ largest trading partner. In comparison, the U.S.-Colombia trade balance sheet totaled a mere $40 billion in  2019. Trade between the United States and Mexico created about 5 million jobs in the U.S. and represents 14.5 percent of total U.S. trade as of 2022. 

Thousands of American companies operate in Mexico, directly benefitting American and Mexican consumers (and companies). Designating Mexico an MNNA would serve to further these economic benefits, as it would lift many restrictions on binational trade and commerce. 

The MNNA designation makes countries eligible for various benefits, including lifted restrictions on the Arms Export Control Act and shared-cost participation in Department of Defense (DoD) research and development projects. Therefore, the MNNA designation would advance trade and security cooperation between the two countries simultaneously.

Currently, U.S. – Mexico defense trade is minimal. Mexico’s law enforcement and the military are vastly underequipped, but with the MNNA designation, the U.S. could provide further equipment to Mexico’s security forces to confront gang violence. The MNNA would allow Mexican security forces to acquire better lethal and non-lethal equipment. Namely, Mexico could purchase U.S.-owned War Reserve Stockpiles. Moreover, Mexico would be eligible to receive military financing from the United States, perhaps helping fund President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s (AMLO’s) planned increase in military salaries to tackle corruption. 

The MNNA would enable Mexico to receive loans of defense material, supplies, equipment, and training from the United States. The MNNA designation would also make Mexico eligible for expedited processing of export licenses of commercial satellites and other signals technologies, assisting Mexican intelligence-collection capabilities. The drug cartels are increasingly sophisticated in their intelligence capabilities —and now regularly use armed drones and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Ultimately, the MNNA provision would put the Mexican government in a better position relative to the gangs. 

In return, this designation would allow the American defense industry to further access the Mexican market, helping create jobs in the United States and spurring greater defense technological developments. Presently, Mexico does not possess any large national defense industries, which would allow American companies to fill the gap and provide Mexico with the necessary equipment to accomplish its security objectives. 

With increased equipment and training, there would be less of a need for the United States to send law enforcement and military personnel to Mexico, which falls in line with the U.S.’s historical isolationism.  

The MMNA designation would also make Mexico eligible for a Collective Defense Agreement (CDA), as most MMNAs gained CDAs after their designation. A CDA between Mexico and the U.S. would increase security cooperation on mutual security issues even further. 

These developments would improve Mexico’s ability to counter the activities of organized criminal groups within its borders. U.S.-Mexico security cooperation has waned since the Mérida Initiative ended in 2017. The MNNA designation would help bring the two nations closer in tackling issues of mutual concern.

Politically, this move would also help alleviate tensions between the two countries. Policymakers in both the U.S. and Mexico have expressed discontent at the current state of bilateral security cooperation. AMLO has expressed his wish to limit the DEA’s presence in Mexico and decried past American direct military involvement in Mexico. On the U.S. side, former President Donald Trump and members of his administration repeatedly expressed frustration at Mexico for not doing enough to tackle gang violence and migration. 

Military trade and cooperation, as facilitated by the MNNA, would respond to issues on both sides of the international aisle. For Mexico, the MNNA would provide it with more resources to finance its military and law enforcement activities, allowing for better equipment, recruitment of staff, and capacity building to accomplish security objectives. All the while reducing the need for the United States to send law enforcement and military personnel into Mexico directly. 

Still, one important question remains: Why hasn’t this been done yet? Political pressure in each country is partly to blame. During the Trump-AMLO era, either President’s supporters might have interpreted any move towards further security cooperation as a betrayal of ideological principles and past policy promises. AMLO often shared harsh rebukes of Trump administration policies, while Trump also alienated Mexican policymakers with his administration’s border wall proposal, high ICE deportations, and rhetoric regarding migrants from the southern border. 

A national poll conducted this November by Mexican newspaper El Financiero showed that 64 percent of Mexicans believed that relations between Mexico and the U.S. are good or very good, with 65 percent having a positive view of President Biden. These poll results illustrate that tensions between the two countries have simmered down since the end of the Trump-AMLO era, providing a unique opportunity for the MNNA designation. 

The Biden and AMLO administrations have initiated bilateral talks on security and economic issues, providing an avenue for dialogue on issues related to the MNNA status. The North American Leaders Summit resumed under Biden in November 2021, the first of its kind in five years.

Joseph Bouchard is a Canadian geopolitical analyst and special contributor to Global Americans. Alex Rosaria is recently a member of Global Americans

Moneda di 1 sèn ta inútil: elimin’é

Kuantu biaha bo no a molestiá pa tuma bo kambio di 1, 2 òf asta 3 sèn despues di kumpra algu? Kuantu biaha bo no a prekupá ora e kahera bisabo: “nos ta keda debebo 2 sèn”. Ku nos no ta duna balor na e modeda aki kier men ku e no ta útil mas. Bo tambe a pensa ku lo ta un bon idea pa elimin’é? Esaki lo no ta promé biaha den nos historia.

Na 1926 minister di Kolonia a aserká Gobernadó di Kòrsou pa eliminá e moneda di 1/2 sèn pasombra e tabata kosta mas ku su balor pa traha. Despues di algun dékada a elimin’é. Den añanan 80 a stòp di traha e moneda di 2 1/2 sèn (Plaka). I na 2008 Banko Sentral a primintí eliminá biyete di 25 florin Antiyano (Ang) pa unu di 20 florin Karibense (Cmg). Mas ku un dékada despues nos ta warda ketu.

Un 100 aña pasá bo por a kumpra un mangel, òf bals, lòlipòp i dròp ku 1 sèn. Awe e moneda tin 20 biaha ménos balor kompará ku 1921 teniendo kuenta ku inflashon. Ademas e tamaño chikí i impráktiko ta pone ku fásilmente e ta kai pèrdè. Ripará kuantu moneda di 1 sèn tin abou bentá. Kontamentu di e moneda na establesimentunan i banko ta un aktividat kostoso i e presensia di 1 sèn ta hasi’é mas kostoso.

Tin sierto desbentaha si. Ku eliminashon di e moneda tur preis mester keda ahustá. Normalmente un produkto di Ang 2,51 òf 2,52 mester bira Ang 2,50. Un produkto di Ang 2,53 òf 2,54 mester bira Ang 2,55. Mester di un kampaña di informashon i kòntròl. Echo ta si ku a bira tempu pa eliminá e moneda mal diseñá i inútil aki.

Willemstad, Kòrsou

Every day is Earth Day over there

School children in Bhutan on their way to clean their school before classes (2017)

That morning I woke up early to take a walk before work in Punakha (Bhutan). I noticed some youngsters in school uniforms walking toward town. A bit surprised I asked them why they were going to school hours before classes start. They explained that schools have a daily rotating system of students who come in early to clean and disinfect the school building, classrooms, yard, etc.

Children are taught about cleanliness as part of health, protection of the environment, and how the country’s future prosperity depends on these aspects. Bhutan, a small Himalayan Kingdom, considers its land to be sacred and that all living things should be respected. It’s part of the constitution.

The attention to the environment is not limited to a provision in the constitution, however. Bhutan is the first carbon-negative in the world and is on its way to reaching zero net greenhouse gas emissions and producing zero waste. The Bhutanese King’s Day is celebrated annually with an environmental theme. All people and institutions are asked to clean up their surroundings every second day of the month.

Educating youth on climate change has turned everyone into conservationists. Every day is Earth Day in Bhutan. Now Curaçao.

Willemstad, Curaçao

Kompleho tin nos kaminda nos ta

Segun Rumbo pa independensia mental: konosé bo historia pa bo konosé bo mes, un nota di maneho di 2002 di Teritorio Insular di Kòrsou, un Yu di Kòrsou ta keda definí komo: Un hende ku ta biba na Kòrsou òf pafó, ku ta komprondé Papiamentu i ta dispuesto pa traha na fabor di adelanto di Kòrsou. E por deklará na mundu ku e ta akseptá Kòrsou su kultura i historia sin kualkier bèrgwensa. E ta akseptá i kumpli ku e echo ku e ta biba den un komunidat multikultural. E no ta konsiderá elementonan kultural di su propio grupo étniko komo kultura di Kòrsou. E ta akseptá ku su kultura relatá na su grupo étniko ta suheto na kultura Afro (Afro ta: “di Afrika òf relatá ku Afrika òf kultura di Afrika, outor)di Kòrsou. E kultura Afro ta e kultura di Kòrsou i esaki ta dominá tur otro grupo étniko. E nota, firmá pa e Diputado di Enseñansa di e gobernashon PAR i PNP a keda usá despues pa PS, MFK i MAN.

E definishon ariba menshoná tin lus kòrá rònt su kurpa pasombra e ta sali for di e buki di rasismo, diskriminashon, xenofobia den kua e idea sentral ta ku un kultura, grupo étniko ta superior kompará ku e otronan. Akaso nos a lubidá e Tutsi (Rwanda), Rohingya (Myanmar) i Roma (‘zigeuners’) (Oropa), djis pa nombra algun kaso?

Semper a usa elementonan di e definishon ariba pa hustifiká dominio di un grupo riba otro. Aki te kasi 1960 a hustifiká superioridat di religion katóliko riba otro religionnan. Dominio di blanku riba otro -komo si fuera nan tabatin un aprobashon selestial-, a pone ku ta un grupo chikí so por a vota. Derechi di voto pa etnisidat Afro lo a kondusí na kanibalismo.

Pa kolmo e outor(nan) ku ta enfatisá konosementu di nos historia, ta demostrá ku sigur nan no sa historia. Promé ku e yegada (fòrsá) di hendenan di Afrika, tabatin Hudiu, Spañó, Hulandes i no papia mes di e grupo original, e indjannan (caiquetio) ku tur otro a bin haña.

Ami no ta indentifiká ku e definishon ariba. Un grupo étniko su norma i balor no por keda evaluá i balorá usando e norma i balornan di un otro grupo étniko, ni maske esaki ta den mayoria.

Lo bo pensa ku despues di sklabitut, kolonialismo, genosidio, sèksismo, rasismo ku a kousa asina tantu doló, nos lo sa mihó i no akseptá algu semehante di hendenan ku enorme kompleho ku nunka a akseptá nan koló òf etnesidat.

Willemstad, Kòrsou

Bati Huda t’un tradishon di odio. Dikon selebr’é, pero zwarte piet, no?

Bati Huda na Kòrsou ta un aktividat religioso den kua durante Semana Santa ta bati un pòpchi ku semehansa di un hende. Simbólikamente e batimentu aki ta revancha kontra Hudas Iskariot, un Hudiu ku supuestamente a traishoná Hesus. Ta straño ku esnan ku semper ta grita kontra di un otro tradishon diskriminatorio, esta ‘zwarte piet’ ta ketu tokante di bati Huda.

For di tempu di Apostolado Katóliko, tabata un kustumber pa riba Bièrnè Santu pone bandera na ‘halve stok’ i traha un pòpchi ku tabata keda públikamente batí ku palu, skòp i moketa.

Bièrnè Santu 27 mart 1682, a bati Huda serka di bahia Santa Ana. Esaki a kousa konsternashon pasombra e pòpchi tabata un representashon idéntiko di e Rabino di Hudiunan di Kòrsou. Gobernashon, ku ya a yega atvertí pa intoleransia religioso, a konsiderá esaki inakseptabel i a prohibí tur aktividat di bati Huda. E prohibishon a dura hopi aña.

Ku batimentu di Huda tabata dirihí riba Hudiunan ta keda spliká den Theologie van de straat i Accentjes van ons land en volk di Pater Brenneker. Brenneker a yama e tradishon aki “een niet echt fijn aangevoelde gewoonte”. Riba Bièrnè Santu òf e djasabra despues, tabata traha algun pòpchi grandi i pone nan dilanti di kasnan di famianan Hudiu ku un bòter di ròm bashí. Tur hende ku pasa por a dal’é un moketa den su kara. Ora solo baha, tabata marcha bou di müsik i alkohòl, kantando kantikanan di bati Huda i asta tin biaha kontra e religion Hudiu, lastrando e pòpchinan den kayanan pa despues bati nan te ora no sobra nada. Normalmente ta sigi un fiesta ku hopi aktividat eskandalósamente imoral.

Na 2019 World Jewish Congress a protestá batimentu di Huda despues di imágennan di batimentu di un pòpchi bistí komo un Hudiu òrtodòks na Polonia, un pais mayoritariamente katóliko. A kita su kabes afó i kima e restu di e kurpa.

Awor, si no ta tolerá e invento diskriminatorio Hulandes di ‘zwarte pieten’, pakiko nos ta keda silensioso pa loke ta trata un tradishon ku ta flagrantemente anti-Hudiu? No ta hipókresia di marka mayó?

Willemstad, Kòrsou

Fuente: Archivo Nashonal, Kerkgeschiedenis Antillen, Pater Brada (1963).

It ain’t over until it’s over

Yogi Berra, un di e gran streyanan di New York Yankees a bisa:”it aint’t over until it’s over” (kos no a kaba te ora ku e a kaba). Sinembargo si mira nos komportashon, lo bo kere ku COVID a desaparesé manera un mal soño ora bo spièrta.

Siman pasá (awor ku no ta duna sifra diariamente mas) 484 hende a tèst positif, lokual ta kasi 70 infekshon nobo tur dia. Durante e periodo aki 3 hende mas a fayesé. Esnan ku mas ta sufri ta esnan mas vulnerabel i prinsipalmente nos hendenan di edat. Nos mester kuida nan i kombensé nan pa na kuida nan mes, prinsipalmente dor di bakuná ku te ainda ta e manera mas efektivo pa evitá morto prematuro.

Tampoko por pèrdè for di bista e konsekuensianan di Covid, esta entre otro malesa di pulmón, kurason i problema ku salú mental ku konosé un subida grandi.

No. Covid no a kaba, e no a desaparesé. Laga nos komo sosiedat tene kuenta ku esaki.

#covid #covidisnotover #curacao

Nos a krea un komunidat ku derechi igual pa e hende ku outismo?

Outismo, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), ta un desabilidat ku ta afektá e abilidat di un persona pa komuniká i partisipá soshalmente den komunidat. ASD ta afektá kada individuo diferente. Riba 2 aprel 2022 mundu ta pidi konsientisashon pa loke ta trata outismo.

Komo hende nos mester konstruí un pais den kua tur hende ta i ta sinti su mes parti di un komunidat. P’esei mester tin kompashon i oportunidat pa tur hende por ta nan mes. Mester sòru pa tin sufisiente oportunidat di rekreo i akseptashon irespeksto ku un hende ku outismo hopi biaha no por establesé kontakto di wowo, hiba un kòmbersashon òf ta hasi moveshon (inboluntario) ku parti di su kurpa. Ta di lamentá ke awe gruponan minoritario ta keda diskriminá, ekspulsá di nos sosiedat (ku asta aprobashon di Fòrti i gruponan religioso kristian) hasiendo e ideal di un komunidat den kua delaster un hende tin mesun derechi di no keda lagá atras i lubidá, imposibel.

Laga pa e dia aki nos realisá kon importante ta pa tin derechi igual, igualdat di oportunidat i derechi di ta felis irespekto ku bo ta den e mayoria òf e minoria. Pa e rason aki nos prioridat mester ta inklusividat. Mester rechasá tur intento di sembra odio entre grupo. Nos sistema di enseñansa mester bira unu di inklusividat.

Alaska, Merka