Junot Díaz Won’t Back Down from Criticizing DR’s Immigration Crisis

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In late October, Eduardo Selman, the DR’s consul in New York, accused Junot Díaz of being “antidominicano” after Díaz spoke out about the Haiti-Dominican Republic immigration crisis – Selman even went so far as to revoke the Order of Merit Award given to Díaz in 2009. Since then, we’ve been waiting to hear how Díaz would respond.

This week, in an interview with Univision, Díaz finally clapped back at Selman. “I’m not going to be silenced because someone’s taking away an award,” he said. “I’ve been in this country how many years now, and when people want to silence you, they’ll give you a fuetazo.” Basically, Díaz, who described himself as “nothing big, just a small-time writer,” is not worried about Selman’s weak threat because he’s been through worse.

In the same video, Selman is shown saying that Díaz was not appreciative of the award because he didn’t show up to receive it. But Díaz continues to be critical of the government, and not of the people in the DR. “You need to have your cojones bien puestos, because without our voices, democracy would not be possible,” he said. “Justice would not be possible.”