THE EDITOR: I often wondered what people meant by the statement "Trinidad is not a real place." Now I know…I think.
After living nearly two decades abroad, I find myself in Trinidad for the past three weeks. Yes, it is nice coming back, for a short time. No, I do not want to live here. You see, Trinidad is no longer home to me and has not been for many, many years. Because Trinidad is not a real place, you see.
In a real place, speed is controlled on the roadways – and crash dummies are not the norm. It would be next to impossible to fly off the road, get stuck and dead in a billboard, like a fly to one of those sticky ribbon traps. Given that cars aren’t meant to fly, the ordinary ones at least, I guess those who argue for increasing speeds can’t be real people either.
In a real place, newsreaders and reporters know there is no word such as "losted," even in the most abysmal losing situation. In a real place, there is accountability. In a real place, rather than chastising a pollster for making use of online data in his analysis of that same divulged data, a minister of government would look to glean whatever lessons can be had from the corruption said pollster may have exposed.
In a real place, defending the indefensible and looking dotish in the eyes of the public might bring tears of shame. But Trinidad is not a real place. In a real place "integrity" is a real word and people demonstrate efforts to effect the Nolan Principles. In a real place you don’t have repeated flooding nationally yet have serious water shortage problems.
In a real place, a CoP who identified, very specifically, 50 gunmen for hire would be gathering evidence for arrests and trials or be fired. A President will not bully people to only publish "good news" about her. But not in this, not a real place, where defending self-ego seems to be a requirement for public office, from CoP to President.
In a real place, government would be moving for more transparency, not less. No hiding behind "sections 34 and 7," you know? In a real place, it won’t take years to identify children photographed holding automatic and semi-automatic guns on a shooting range. Or their parents, for that matter.
When people complain Trinidad is a not real place, I can only agree. Wholeheartedly.
Mohan Ramcharan, England