According to scientists at the University of Arizona, the AIDS virus was brought to the U.S. in 1969 by a single Haitian immigrant and is responsible for the strain of AIDS found in the U.S. and Europe. Can't say I was surprised to hear this story again but now it's being touted as 'scientific'. The team of international scientists working on behalf of the National Academy of Science (NAS) did find a reason to blame AIDS on Africa; apparently someone from Africa brought it Haiti first.
What always amazes me about these 'scientific' claims about AIDS is that they are always have their origin in Africa and in this case, also Haiti. Last time I checked, Haiti, the world's first black republic, has been the poorest country in the western hemisphere for many, many, many years. The Haitians successfully ended slavery and defeated the French but have been mired in turmoil and violence since 1801. Haiti's problems go much deeper than the obvious conflicts created by its Spanish and French colonizers and it's meddling, no good neighbor to the north, the U.S.
Even back in 1969 when the NAS claims AIDS was brought to the US by some Haitian, it has never been easy for any one of Haitian descent to enter the country unless they belonged to the mulatto elite, had family living here or seeking political asylum. The average Haitian even back then was living on pennies a day and could hardly afford to travel to the U.S. for leisure especially under the murderous dictatorship of 'Papa Doc' Duvalier, who was aided and abetted by vodou and the U.S. government. I'm not buying this claim.
If we skip across the Atlantic Ocean to Africa, the claims made by the NAS appear to be more unlikely given the economic and social conditions of sub-Saharan Africa. As expected, the NAS is going to point to black Africa as the origin of AIDS; god forbid they even point to north of the sahel to claim that some Egyptian or Tunisian brought the disease to Haiti. Racially and culturally biased scientists already have an idea in their minds about where they believe AIDS originated, all it takes is the research and evidence to prove such theories and those theories always point to Africa.
Africa has the distinction of being the world's poorest continent where 41% of the population lives on less than $1 a day. Unlike the monied elite of the ruling class, the average African cannot afford to travel to places like Haiti or the United States, they are more concerned with feeding their families, dodging civil conflicts and scraping out a living under the boot of some greedy, detached president who was fraudulently elected. Life isn't that easy if you live in sub-Saharan Africa, getting a visa to leave the country is practically impossible unless you are rich, socially connected or win the immigration lottery.
Let's think this one through, Americans and Europeans have always had the freedom to travel around the world. Traveling to Haiti is no more difficult than going to a country in sub-Saharan Africa, that's why I'm viewing the NAS report with a healthy dose of skepticism. Americans and Europeans can buy a plane ticket to anywhere they want to go but the majority of Haitians and Africans cannot. Stigmatizing the people of Haiti and Africa as carriers/spreaders of AIDS is feckless, disingenuous and despicable, but that group of international scientists who claim to have made this discovery have no shame.
A few weeks ago, a Noble prize winning scientist, Dr. James Watson declared that people of African descent were less intelligent than those of European descent. I bet he would claim that he had the scientific evidence to prove his theory too.