The Dominican Constitution, Respected or Rejected

daddy1

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I have asked several Domincans and Haitian Dominican's, about the Dominican constitution, and what exactly are there rights as a Dominican are, and to my surprise alot did not know there rights, some have even said it's just a piece of paper as stated by Juaquin Balaguer at one time... do the Dominican Military, Police force, politicians, and President's, respect there constitution? or is it really just a piece of paper..!
 

Rick Snyder

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Very interesting subject

Daddy 1 you have brought up a very interesting subject and I will gleefully wait for other responses as I have presented this same question to many Dominicans also. The majority of the people that I have talked to have no idea as to what the purpose of a constitution is. Therein lies the reason that they don?t know what their rights are or that they even have rights. I have never found the constitution mentioned in any school here so the children are not being taught that which so many Dominicans fought and died for over the years. They are taught about country unity, respect and the founding forefathers but nothing about the constitution or its contents. The majority of the Dominicans also have no idea as to what a democracy is or how it should work. If the constitution and democracy were taught in school I honestly believe the DR would become a better place. (Being taught in school ??darn there?s that word EDUCATION again!) (Or lack thereof!)

As to the higher ups respecting their constitution. It seems IMHO that they respect it only when it serves them directly and ignore it when it doesn?t. As to it being just a piece of paper depends on what the people want it to be. For it to be an instrument of true purpose in this country would require, I think, some bloodshed be spilled only because those controlling everything do not want the status quo to change and would therefore fight any desire for equal rights, freedoms and a democratic way in this country as spelled out in their constitution. (My opinion as I see it)
 

Mirador

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...what Constitution? ...where's the Constitution?

The first Dominican Constitution was drafted in 1844, and since then it has been changed 32 times, the last time in 2002. The current political establishment is already chattering for another change, obviously to suit their own personal agendas.
 

Rick Snyder

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It's there

The constitution has in fact been through a lot of changes as has the one in the USA which was adopted in 1776 and has had 27 changes with the last one in 1992. Usually a constitution is changed in order to fix something that needs fixing but at times they are changed to help those that are in control. The fact remains that changes are not made that take away from the basic rights of individuals but to enjoy those rights you must first be aware that those rights exist. Case in point, here in the DR.
 

Mirador

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The constitution has in fact been through a lot of changes as has the one in the USA

Wrong! The US Constitution hasn't been changed, it has been amended, and the 27th Amendment was submitted with the intention of preventing members of Congress from giving themselves pay raises.

The fact remains that changes are not made that take away from the basic rights of individuals but to enjoy those rights you must first be aware that those rights exist. Case in point, here in the DR.

Dominicans in general are very much aware of basic human rights, and the fact that they, in many instances, don't enjoy these rights has nothing to do with awareness.
 

RonS

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Doesn't amended mean change? Moreover, the US Supreme Court has interpreted and reinterpreted the Constitution on several occassions and has effectively 'changed' Constitutional Law, the most notworthy example being the doctrine of Separate but Equal found unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education. So, yes, our Constitution has been 'changed' by several means, including 'amendment'.

But that was not the point. The idea that the Constitution of the Dominican Republic is observed more in the breach is an outrage. That Dominicans are unware that thier basic rights are enshrined in law is an even greater outrage. Those of us who have had even a passing thought of investing in and/or relocating to the DR must really consider the consequence of this sad state of affairs.
 

Exxtol

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RonS said:
Doesn't amended mean change? Moreover, the US Supreme Court has interpreted and reinterpreted the Constitution on several occassions and has effectively 'changed' Constitutional Law, the most notworthy example being the doctrine of Separate but Equal found unconstitutional in Brown v. Board of Education. So, yes, our Constitution has been 'changed' by several means, including 'amendment'.

But that was not the point. The idea that the Constitution of the Dominican Republic is observed more in the breach is an outrage. That Dominicans are unware that thier basic rights are enshrined in law is an even greater outrage. Those of us who have had even a passing thought of investing in and/or relocating to the DR must really consider the consequence of this sad state of affairs.


I'm with you........last time i checked amended means change.
 

Rick Snyder

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Ahhhhhhhh music to my ears

Mirador now that you are aware that the US constitution has in fact been changed over the years I won?t address that.

Your quote:
Dominicans in general are very much aware of basic human rights, and the fact that they, in many instances, don't enjoy these rights has nothing to do with awareness.

I must disagree with you on this one due to the fact that I talk to the average, poor Dominican on a daily basis, they are the majority, and they seem to be aware of basic human rights but do not think that those rights pertain to them. In addition they have no idea that these rights are afforded them in their constitution. With the majority of the population that never reads anything, except maybe the sports page and that is only to check the final scores, what proof do you have that the (average) Dominican has ever read their constitution? When is the last time you saw the Dominican constitution displayed anywhere? When is the last time you saw it in any book here in the DR? When is the last time you heard it being discussed in public school? When is the last time you have heard one of your political leaders, senators, deputies, president, PLD, PRD, PRSC, PRSD talk about it in the media, on TV our in any town when they decide to visit?
???????.NEVER????????.
The Dominican people do not know and the powers-to-be like it that way!
 

Exxtol

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Rick Snyder said:
Mirador now that you are aware that the US constitution has in fact been changed over the years I won?t address that.

Your quote:


I must disagree with you on this one due to the fact that I talk to the average, poor Dominican on a daily basis, they are the majority, and they seem to be aware of basic human rights but do not think that those rights pertain to them. In addition they have no idea that these rights are afforded them in their constitution. With the majority of the population that never reads anything, except maybe the sports page and that is only to check the final scores, what proof do you have that the (average) Dominican has ever read their constitution? When is the last time you saw the Dominican constitution displayed anywhere? When is the last time you saw it in any book here in the DR? When is the last time you heard it being discussed in public school? When is the last time you have heard one of your political leaders, senators, deputies, president, PLD, PRD, PRSC, PRSD talk about it in the media, on TV our in any town when they decide to visit?
???????.NEVER????????.
The Dominican people do not know and the powers-to-be like it that way!


It's a shame isn't it? I interned at San Martin de Porres, in the barrio of Guachupita--it's amazing how the educational system has failed the dominican people. the kids i taught didn't even know what a constitution was. all they knew were "huelgas" (police raids), murder, drugs, and more murder. that place was a wonder, it reminded me of that movie, "City of Gods". how can dominicans respect or reject the constituion when half of them don't even know what it is?

"huelgas" are NOT police raids. They are strikes. Police raids are "redadas" FYI
 
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Mirador

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Mirador now that you are aware that the US constitution has in fact been changed over the years I won?t address that.

Don't be so niggardly, I was just trying to call a spade a spade.
 

bob saunders

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According to my wife, children in her school are taught about the constitution as well as their rights(childrens rights)
 

RonS

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Mirador said:
Don't be so niggardly, I was just trying to call a spade a spade.

The language used in this post says it all! :tired: I wonder what those who believe in the US Constitutional protections of equal rights would say about such verbage in the context of uplifting peoples of other countries to strengthen democratic principles and participation in thier system of government. It is horrifying that this kind of language is used by presumably thoughtful people in the 21st Century!
 

Rick Snyder

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To bob saunders

Bob saunders, if I may ask, what school and where is it? Private or public? I only inquire as I have never heard any children or adults here acknowledge that the constitution per se is taught here. If there are some schools that teach it then I stand corrected and further add that all schools should teach it and that is not happening yet.
 

bob saunders

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It is a private school in Jarabacoa. Private schools in the DR have to teach a goverment curriculum as a minimum but most of course teach more, as this is what parents want. The Dominican education system may not be up to the standards that we in the 1st world have, but there are plenty of motivated students with parents that want their children to have a better live that they had that realise education is one of the most important tools in the toolbox. My wife's clients are mainly poor people, but many are also the children of middle class and upper middle class people.
 

Mirador

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The language used in this post says it all! I wonder what those who believe in the US Constitutional protections of equal rights would say about such verbage in the context of uplifting peoples of other countries to strengthen democratic principles and participation in thier system of government. It is horrifying that this kind of language is used by presumably thoughtful people in the 21st Century!

You have obviously missinterpreted me. Here's the source of my words:

The American Heritage ? Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
nig?gard?ly Listen: [ n g rd-l ] adj.
1. Grudging and petty in giving or spending.
2. Meanly small; scanty or meager: left the waiter a niggardly tip.
nig gard?li?ness n.
nig gard?ly adv.​


The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition. 2002.

call a spade a spade​

To speak directly and bluntly; to avoid euphemism: ?The prosecutor said, ?Let?s call a spade a spade. You didn?t borrow the money, you stole it.??
 

RonS

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I don't need a lecture regarding appropriate and inappropriate word usage, notwithstanding your dictionary reference. I would bet a months wages you wouldn't use such language at the corner of 125th Street and 7th Avenue in Harlem, New York. But, this is the last I will have to say on this subject. I think I need a break.
 

Mirador

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I don't need a lecture regarding appropriate and inappropriate word usage, notwithstanding your dictionary reference. I would bet a months wages you wouldn't use such language at the corner of 125th Street and 7th Avenue in Harlem, New York

I'm posting from Santo Domingo, and I've never been to New York. My birth (mother) language is Spanish, and I post with the intention to practice and use the little English I know. So, if you be so kind (or any other kind DR1 member...), please explain how I've misused the English language. I know that Spanish words can have different meanings in different Latin American countries. So again, please explain what is the meaning of my word usage in NY, and if it's the same in Canada, England, India, or any other English speaking country for that matter.
 

bob saunders

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Mirador said:
I'm posting from Santo Domingo, and I've never been to New York. My birth (mother) language is Spanish, and I post with the intention to practice and use the little English I know. So, if you be so kind (or any other kind DR1 member...), please explain how I've misused the English language. I know that Spanish words can have different meanings in different Latin American countries. So again, please explain what is the meaning of my word usage in NY, and if it's the same in Canada, England, India, or any other English speaking country for that matter.

You are completely correct in your usage of both terms. What Ron is referring to is what is called politically correct usage. Thus any word that would have racial overtones(niggardly), which the poorly educated would equate with the word nigger, which as you probably know is a bad world to use around black people unless you are a black american yourself.