The Unmitigated Racist Gall of Suggesting Haitians Give Up Cannibalism
By Ben Bartee - March 18, 2024

Originally published via Armageddon Prose:

Some time in the past, liberal thinkers of the Western worldview cultivated a concept called “cultural relativism,” which has since rendered the Western mind a stupefied mess, unable to pass any sort of moral judgment at all on other cultures — let alone assert its own superiority when it’s warranted (almost all cultures have at least something that they offer better than the rest; the culture-making art is taking — “appropriating,” if you will — those elements of foreign cultures that are noble and discarding those that are not).

I have explored this phemonenon and its manifestations at great lengths in my expat memoir, Broken English Teacher: Notes From Exile.

We have seen the ramifications of cultural relativism, driven to its maximalist conclusion, play out in the recent melodrama regarding Haitian cannibal gangs.

Via NBC News:

“As Haiti faces an extreme political and societal crisis amid a wave of intense violence, tech billionaire Elon Musk and right-wing pundits online are weaponizing unverified claims of cannibalism coming out of the conflict to advance a political agenda on immigration.

Musk and conservative influencers have spread the message to millions, smearing Haitian migrants as cannibals as they endure deep uncertainty about the future of their country and family members still there. 

The claims are getting tens of millions of views on the social media platform X, where false or misleading information has spread since Musk bought the app and slashed content moderation. Many of the people spreading the sensational claims are premium subscribers on X, meaning their content can make them money through advertising sales. 

The accusations of widespread cannibalism are based on what experts said was a likely intimidation tactic from select gang members: In some videos, the most prominent examples being at least two years old, alleged members of violent gangs in Haiti appear to bite into human flesh. Experts said these videos are likely part of propaganda campaigns designed to scare rivals and terrorize local Haitians rather than a reflection of common or normalized behavior. One former armed group went by the name ‘Cannibal Army.’”

Well, the acknowledgment of the practice of institutionalized cannibalism doesn’t get much more explicit than naming one’s gang “Cannibal Army.”

But let’s not let such an admission get in the way of the classic practice of white self-flagellation.

Via Rolling Stone:

“There’s a long, shameful history of white westerners baselessly accusing Haitians of cannibalism and human sacrifice, often connecting them to Haitian Vodou, a heavily stereotyped African diasporic religion.”

Of course, the practice of cannibalism as a tool of war and political intimidation and spiritual empowerment among descendants of Africans is well-documented, perhaps nowhere better than this Vice documentary (when Vice produced quality work).


The reality, is, though, that this current media narrative is a classic case of gaslighting and goalpost-shifting, playing on the well-conditioned self-hatred and cultural relativism engrained in the minds of the whites.

For now, we have the denials from the likes of NBC that cannibalism exists at all — or, if it does, that it’s a freak occurrence and not indicative of any sort of cultural tolerance of the practice.

However, even if it came to light that cannibalism were practiced far and wide in Haiti — even if the country made a national holiday out of it by popular referendum — the next move from the media liberal class would be to celebrate Haitian cannibalism as an act of sacred cultural Diversity™ and smear anyone who objected as a White Supremacist™ bigot.

That’s how this game gets played.

Ben Bartee, author of Broken English Teacher: Notes From Exile, is an independent Bangkok-based American journalist with opposable thumbs.

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