In the 1960’s and 1970’s, the Dominican Republic and the Dominicans began to be the target of an international media campaign and in certain educational levels attacking the Dominican identity. The purpose is to make Dominicans feel bad about their country and to feel ashamed of being Dominicans. Some want that Dominicans identify with the history of neighboring Haiti and support an eventual territory expansion and absorption of the Dominican Republic by Haiti. This idea is not always supported by most Haitians, but in some cases a small group of Haitians are in agreement with this ideal.
Here we will show some of the incongruencies and criticisms of this campaign that has entrenched itself ever more slightly in Dominican society. This incessant campaign and at times hateful towards the Dominican Republic, has gained the support of some Dominicans. These range from teachers in schools and professors in universities, both public and private. Certain personalities in Dominican show business which includes some actors, singers, authors, and others. Some politicians, personalities in mass communication, and some foreigners including some members of the Dominican diaspora. Many of these people have been influenced by ideas regarding identity, race, and ethnicity that originates from a small segment of the society of the United States.
The Dominican Identity
The Dominican Republic is a small country, yet it’s big. Small in territory despite it’s the second largest country in the Caribbean with 48,442 KM2 (18,792 square miles.) For a long time it was the least populated and dense country in the Caribbean, now surpasses 10 million. It’s the place in the Americas where Spanish has been spoken the longest, where the first European city in the hemisphere was founded, and the first place that Africans arrived and lived in. It saw the very first mestizo and mulatto in the Americas, and probably the first sambo, trirracials, and other mixes between Native Americans, Spaniards, and Africans. This mixture continues and Dominicans take it to all places, at all times, because it’s in our blood, our language, our food, and in our music. It’s in our art, our architecture, our way of enjoyment and expressing sadness. It’s present in our beliefs, our myths, and in our realities. Dominicans are the result of a mixture that gave rise to our nationality and our country.
These aspects that characterizes us has meshed in a country that emerges from Spain and with time acquires influences from around the world. On that fact is created our identity with a country where race takes second place to things such as traditions, language, and our way of being. It isn’t a racist society, but we have inherited certain vices such as classism and colorism. Despite this, there is no country in the world, whether it’s big or small, rich or poor, powerful or weak that is free of any sins. All countries have asterisks. All countries have good things and bad things. All countries have things that developed the right way and things that will be gradually changed, but always centerd on its reality.
The Dominican Republic is a country that is small to the world, but giant for Dominicans. It deserves, like any country, to be within the community of countries, because it’s filled of pride based on the sweat, the tears, and the sacrifice of its people in creating and defending her, and making sure she will exist forever. Dominican identity relates us to our country, the land of our origin. Due to that, every Dominican with a good heart wish for her the best, that she gets better as time passes to give a better standard of livings to all Dominicans.
That’s the reason and the only reason that this criticism is made towards the incessant attacks to our identity and our country. After spending years analizing this tendency we are convinced that the ultimate goal is to destroy the Dominican Republic and make Dominicans dissappear as a nationality. They want to sow and intensify divisions among Dominicans. Take this as a warning, bringing to light aspects of an international media campaign headed by interest groups that are looking to put an end to our nation and country.
Anti-Dominicanism exist and has manifested itself for quite some time. Its a theory based on lies and as such, it’s like a house built on quicksand. This posture gets our rejection now and ever.
The “One-Drop-Rule” and the African American Identity in the United States
In the United States exist an identity concept that is based on the exaggerating of one origin and the negation of another. It’s known as the “One-Drop-Rule.” The purpose of this social rule is to exaggerate the black population and make the mixed race or mulattoes not recognize the inputs of the whites or Europeans or to minimalize them. As it could be imagined, the “One-Drop-Rule” supposes that if within a person’s origins is the African regardless of how small it may be, that person is considered black. It doesn’t matter if less than 1% is of African origin and they don’t look like a native Sub-Saharan African in color and/or features. If it’s known that there is some African origin, then that person is black.
This social rule was created in the United States and also applied in some countries. Despite this, the immense majority of countries where at least 90% of humanity lives doesn’t apply this concept and its not even understood. The fact that a very small part of humanity apply this concept, means that many Americans are shocked when they go to another country that isn’t their own and realize that the “One-Drop-Rule” doesn’t exist. Plus, the shock is intensified when they realize that they are part of an extremely small part of humanity that apply this concept of exalting one origin while negating another. They are even more shocked when it dawns on them that a person considered “black” in the United States is considered something else in another country.
The following images are of some people that according to the “One-Drop-Rule” are considered “black” in the United States, but they aren’t in other countries and in reality.
The “Blood Quantum” and Defining a Native American in the United States
The “Blood Quantum” is a concept applied by many Native American tribes in the United States and Canada to define what person can be a member of a legally recognized tribe. It consist of a person having at least a certain amount in the ancestral DNA of Native American origin. In many cases it must be a genetic origin of that tribe in particular. The requisites vary and depends on the tribe with range from 50% to less than 1%. As a consequence, a person without a Native American look or without one or two Native American features can be a Native American in the United States.
This minimum amount of Native American ancestry required by Native American tribes in the United States is proven via genetic tests.
The following list is of the minimum required in the ancestral DNA by select Native American tribes in the United States as the first step in allowing someone to join their tribes.
- Miccosukee: 50%
- Choctaw: 50%
- St Croix Chippewa (of Winsconsin, not of St Croix in the Caribbean islands): 50%
- United Keetowah Band: 25%
- Red Lake Nation: 25%
- Seminole: 25%
- Apache Tribe: 12.5%
- Delaware Nation: 12.5%
- Wichitas and related tribes: 12.5%
- Caddo Nation: 6.25%
- Cherokee Eastern Seaboard: 6.25%
- Ute of The North Tribe: 6.25%
- Fort Still Apache Tribe: 6.25%
- Iowa of Oklahoma Tribe: 6.25%
- Mashantucket Pequot of Connecticut Tribe: any percentage (can be less than 1%), requires evidence of direct ancestry.
- Ottawa of Oklahoma Tribe: any percentage (can be less than 1%), requires evidence of direct ancestry.
The following images are of some Americans that are Native Americans and are members to variuos tribes.
The Desire to Impose on Dominicans the “One-Drop-Rule,” but not the “Blood Quantum”
Some Afrocentric groups, especially those from the United States, have expressed the desire to impose on Dominicans the “One-Drop-Rule,” but these same people wouldn’t want the “Blood Qusntum” to be applied. According to the “One-Drop-Rule” most Dominicans would be considered “black,” but it’s also true that most Dominicans have enough Native American blood to meet the minimum required in the “Blood Quantum” to be considered a Native American, in this case a Taino. To this is added that the average Dominican has Native American DNA that ranges from 4% to 11% and more, making the average Dominican more Native American than the average African American who has zero Native American ancestry. In a similar manner, the genetic tendency in the Caribbean islands is that Native American ancestry is greatest in the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and Cuba than in most of the other islands. Plus, the Native American mitochondrial DNA, which is inherited unchanged via the maternal lineage of men and women, is greater in the Spanish Caribbean than in the rest of the Caribbean and greater than among African Americans in the United States.
Afrocentrics in general tend to assume that the average Dominican is identical or very similar to the average African American or to the average Caribbean outside the Spanish Caribbean. What many genetic tests and studies show is that Dominicans do have a different composition from the average African American and average Caribbean from outside the Spanish Caribbean. In fact, it’s the non-Hispanic Caribbeans that most resembles the average African American of the United States.
The Manifest Destiny of the United States in Modern Times
The Manifest Destiny was a belief invented in the United States and was generally held by its population during the XX century. It implied that at a time of western expansion of the United States. Its original territory comprised of the thirteen colonies of England along the eastern seaboard from Maine to Georgia on the north-south axis. Americans believed the idea that everything west of the United States was hers, despite that all the territory belong to various countries.
This idea technically cease to exist in the XX century, at a time when the United States had expanded west until reaching the coast of the Pacific Ocean and south with the acquisition of Florida. However, a part of this sentiment remains and manifest itself by the desire of making the rest of the world more like the United States and less of how it is. This tendency has had some successess and many failures, and it extends to the concept of identity in other countries. As a result, many Americans think that their form of identity such as applying the “One-Drop-Rule” or the “Blood Quantum,” inherently is correct and superior to other forms of identities in other countries. This incorrect belief leads many Americans to look down on the identities of other countries and impulse its own identity system in other countries so that eventually the local identity system is replaced by the American one or a similar version to the American identity system. They feel that their identity system is better, in essence feeling superior to others, and that leads to the belief that if something works in the United States, it must work in other countries. From there comes the origin of the failures instead of making things better, they make them worse in other countries. From those other countries perspective, the American intromision on local affairs is seen as a rivalry and a cultural threat to the local culture and identity. As such, it must be attacked, rejected, and eventually its elimination from the local sphere.
This desire to make the world more like the United States in politics, economy, social, etc; is not seen in other countries.
Negating that the Dominican Republic is a Mixed Country
The negation that the Dominican Republic is a mixed race country is real. The Afrocentric groups are the major proponents of this vision, because reality means that there is a difference between the Dominican Republic and the non-Hispanic Caribbean and to the African American community in the United States. Rather than recognize that the Dominican Republic is a mostly mixed race country, they pretend to criticize Dominicans claiming things such as Dominicans reject their blackness, Dominicans claim to be something they are not, and Dominicans are people with an identity problem. This is not only false, but this very same Afrocentrics are believers and proponents of things such as the “One-Drop-Rule” and that implies that they suffer from the same things they accuse Dominicans of having. It’s a sort of fallacy of projection. The exception is in their claim that Dominicans “reject their blackness,” because in this case is would be that mixed race African Americans, which are a minority within the African American group, reject in their identity their white or European side and, where it applies, their Native American side.
In their desire to discredit Dominicans, they claim outrageous things such as that most places in the Dominican Republic are like any place in the non-Hispanic Caribbean whether this is Haiti, Jamaica, Barbados, etc. This is not only false in reality, but this becomes evident in genetic studies as well.
In 2015, the scientific magazine Nature published a genetic study titled “Unravelling The Hidden Ancestry of American Admixed Populations.” The results included people from the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Barbados; African Americans from the United States and other places. Notice the following graphs.
One of the most obvious details is that ghd African heritage is the overwhelming majority amonf African Americans and Barbadians. The European heritage makes up the majority among Puerto Ricans and Dominicans. The results of Barbadoes are typical for the non-Hispanic Caribbean while the results for the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico are typical of the Hispanic Caribbean. Notice the discrepancy in results between Barbadoes and the Dominican Republic. Its impossible that most places in both countries look the same or very similar. Even comparing the Dominican Republic with other countries of the Americas confirm that the Dominican Republic is more African than Mexico or Peru, but at the same time it’s more European than those two countries.
Another example is a genetic study from 2013 published in the scientific magazine Plos and titled “Reconstructing the Population Genetic History of the Caribbean.” The results consist of five countries and one territory with coast on the Caribbean Sea.
What is evident is the estimated change in the genetic composition during 500 years. This corresponds to the era of the conquest in the 1500’s to 2013. In red are the European heritage, in green the African, and in blue the Native American. The Hispanic Caribbean results are sddn in Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic. In all of them the European ancestry is the majority, despite the Dominican Republic has the highest African heritage of the three and Puerto Rico the highest Native American ancestry. Once again, the African ancestry is the overwhelming majority and the Native American ancestry basically negligible or non-existant in the non-Hispanic Caribbean, on this ocassion represented by Haiti.
The following map is from 23andme and show the average genetic result from the selected Caribbean countries and territories.
One more time the differences between the Hispanic Caribbean and the non-Hispanic Caribbean is clearly visible. Trinidad and Tobago has a different demographic history from the rest of the English Caribbean. In the case of that segment of the Caribbean, places like Jamaica or Grenada are more representatives while Haiti is a part of the Francophone Caribbean.
The sane is seen in other genetic studies. Without a doubt, reality leaves Afrocentrics in a ridiculous place as they deny the mixed race aspect of most Dominicans.
A Small Segment of the Dominican Left Wants the Dominican Republic Adopting the “One-Drop-Rule”
A part of the Dominican Left (notice, we mention a part, not most or all) wish to see the United States “One-Drop-Rule” to be adopted by the Dominican Republic. Behind this desire are two motives that, generally, don’t coincide. In other words, the part of the Dominican Left that wants this splits into two sub-parts.
One sub-group thinks that if Dominicans adopt the “One-Drop-Rule,” it will make much easier the union between the Dominican and the Haitian societies. Haitian society identify as a black country. Many Haitian constitutions certify this, as is the case with the 1805 Haitian Constitution that says “Art 14. All meaning of color among the children of one and the same family, of whom the chief magistrate is the father, being necessarily to cease, the Haitians shall henceforth be known by the generic appellation of blacks.”
The other sub-group is not interested in a future elimination of the Dominican Republic and the Dominicanas, rather it believes that the Dominican Republic should have a black identity, despite most of the people are heavily mixed. As can be seen above, the Dominican Republic isn’t the same or similar to countries with real blacks where the average African ancestral DNA is the overwhelming majority. In addition, countries with real blacks (and the African Americans of the United States) have the peculiarity in Africa as it does in the Americas, that the paternal Y-DNA and the maternal mitochondrial DNA is overwhelmingly of African descent. Yet, in the Dominican Republic the Y-DNA is overwhelmingly European, another evidence of the mixture of its people. At the same time, the countries where most of the population is of mixed race and in that mixture the African ancestry is not the majority, but it’s important, are small and can be counted in the fingers of one hand (Dominican Republic, Cabo Verde and maybe one or two other countries, with the Dominican Republic as the largest in territory and population size.) The black identity doesn’t truly represents most of the population of the Dominican Republic, as it does with other countries where most of the people are real blacks such as Haiti, Jamaica, Barbados; Ghana, Ivory Coast, Congo; etc.
A Small Segment of the Dominican Diaspora Wants the Dominican Republic Adopting the “One-Drop-Rule”
The United States is also the home of a large segment of the Dominican diaspora. While it’s true that most oppose applying the sane parameters and identity concepts of the United States to the Dominican Republic due to differences such as traditions, culture, history and very different realities; there is another small group of Dominican-Americans that adopted the “One-Drop-Rule.” Exposure to American public school education and the daily living in the streets of American cities has created this. Within this group are many that want for the Dominican Republic to adopt the “One-Drop-Rule.” This only exist in this small group of the Dominican diaspora in the United States. It isn’t seen in the segment of the Dominican diaspora living in places like Puerto Rico, Spain, Italy; Panama, etc. Not even the part of the Dominican diaspora radicated in Canada, which is the country most similar to the United States, is seen this constant attack and criticism towards the identity of the Dominican Republic.
All Papers Attacking Dominican Identity are Published in the United States
A curious detail is when the one notices the origin of many papers criticizing and analyzing the identity of the Dominican Republic. Most of them are in English and almost all are from organizations, institutions, and universities located in the United States. We can take into account that the United States is where the “One-Drop-Rule” and the “Blood Quantum” were invented, to that we add its pasts with the Manifest Destiny and its desire to change the world (many times with disastrous results, because everything that works in the United States doesn’t works in other countries. Given all of that, it’s not surprising that thd organizations that are attacking the identity of the Dominican Republic are from the United States too. This is not seen in other countries such as Cuba, Spain, Mexico; Canada, France, China; etc.
A Racist and Wrong View of the Origin of the Dominican Republic
Perhaps this should had been expected if we notice that the threat against the identity of the Dominican Republic is coming almost exclusively from certain groups in the United States. Since the United States is a racialized society, it sees everything through a racial prism. Race and the concept of its meaning and identification forms the basis of identity in the United States. Race is above all things.
Many of the haters of the Dominican Republic claim the country was created for racial reasons. As such, according to them non-white Dominicans shouldn’t feel pride for their identity and their country. They want that the destroyers of the Dominican Republic to be Dominicans themselves. However, what they claim is very far from reality. Our country has been created and defended by all Dominicans of all races and colors. To say something else is to show ignorance in the matter.
What can be said is that at the time of its independence most of the people of the Dominican Republic on average were lighter than most current Dominicans. Under no circumstances does this means that there were no blacks and dark skin people or that they were a very small minority. The demographic changes that our country has had is mainly due to a continuous mixing that has existed since we were a part of Spain. In fact, the acceptance among Dominicans of widespread racial mixture is due to Spain that never opposed to the practice anywhere in the Americas.
To this phenomenon csn be added the different rates of growths between the different segments of the population. This is impacted on the one hand by racial mixture and on the other by the natural growth.
In a much lesser emphasis is the impact of legal and illegal immigration, which since the country was created until the beginnings of the XX century it was never a lot. It was in the beginning of the XXI century that mass immigration from Haiti became established, until then there was always a migratory current composed of very low numbers. In this same century another mass immigration also started to the Dominican Republic and this one is from Venezuela. Since our country was createdwe have received immigration from Spain, Puerto Rico, Cuba; Haiti, and some islands of the Lesser Antilles. In addition, we have also received immigration from the United States, Colombia, France; Germany, Lebanon, and many other countries. With respect to immigration, the demographic effect this had was limited to certain geographic areas where each migrant group tended to congregate, but it didn’t had a general impact on the country as a whole.
Most current Dominicans are of colonial origin and this is evident in the genetic studies. Almost all Dominicans have Native American ancestry. This is remarkable considering that the last pure blooded Taino in what is now the Dominican Republic died in the XVII century. If most Dominicans were descendants of immigration from post the creation of the country, the Native American genetic input should be negligible as in the non-Hispanic Caribbean. Moreover, this also means that if there is a noriceable Native American ancestry, then part of the Spanish and African ancestry present in most Dominicans corresponds to the first Spaniards and Africans in our country and in all of the Americas, in addition to those that arrived in the XV and XVI centuries.
In all times we had defenders of our people and our country, political leaders, and socisl leaders of all colors and races. That some haters of the Dominicans say something else will not change a thing of the past.
In conclusion, the enemies of our country use a series of lies with the hope that it breaks the patriotic sentiment of Dominicans. Many are in favor of the future destruction of the Dominican Republic. They are evidencing their hypocrasy as they themselves are believers of the “One-Drop-Rule” of the United States, an identity based on focusing on one origin and ignoring all the others. They paint the Dominicans as what they aren’t, blame the Dominicans of things they have no fault, see themselves as superior to Dominicans and/or think their identity system is superior to the identity of the Dominicans.
Our country, our traditions, our identity; our culture, our history, and our people deserve respect and admiration. Against all odds based on an act of self-preservation we have created their country. Against all odds we have defended their country. This wasn’t acheived playing a kids game, but rather through wars and fighting. Dominican blood was spilled, Dominicans suffered, and Dominicans sacrificed for centuries and by thousands of people for an ideal, for our country, and for our people. The destruction of the Dominican Republic is not an option.