Now it's not my intention to debase my own homeland from afar - it's easy to critique; but for the record, I've been as active as anyone in recommending 'fixes' for the problems Trinidad and Tobago has faced. And sometimes by identifying our flaws we speak to our higher ideals. Furthermore, a substantive critique of our state and the citizen could never necessarily be a bad thing. Certainly I'm not in bad company when one considers the critique forwarded by none other than Eric E. Williams: "Finally, the entire West Indian tradition is anti-intellectual. People's lives are bounded by the narrow materialistic considerations of the price of produce or the cost of living or the laziness of workers or the growth of crime and delinquency or gambling or chasing after women (or men as the case may be) or just plain gluttony and imbibing. Add to that the movies and the radio and in more modern days the equally pernicious television, and fit in somewhere in the schedule sleeping and working or making pretence of working, and the normal individual's day is complete. Cricket and football, a sports meeting, the races – and the normal year is complete. A Head of Government cannot be limited to such narrow and materialistic considerations. So I read deliberately, in silent protest against the bastardisation of so-called West Indian intellectualism." (December 3 1965).
As benign and abstract as the above quotation may appear, I'll contend that West Indian anti-intellectualism as it particularly relates to Trinidad and Tobago has resulted in something even more sinister. Some 53 years since the above quotation by the Father of the Nation, the 'bastardization of so-called West Indian intellectualism' has proven more costly than a merely uninformed populace. It's effectively resulted in a society permeated by greed, self interest, and the lack of the intellectual and moral discipline to commit to a short, medium, or long-term strategy that puts an end to the murders of men, women, and children in Trinidad and Tobago. What's even more absurd is to hear men like Professor Ramesh Deosaran complain. He was quoted as saying to the Trinidad and Tobago Guardian Newspaper: "we need to know the criteria used and published and compare it to other countries because when you lump all countries as one in such a narrow analysis, you can give misleading results." Like really?? Who cares about the methodology Professor!?? Especially with 400 plus murders already in the year of 2018.