Are Trinidadians really a greedy people? I hear and see this word use often by some Trinis to describe other Trinis but let’s define the word.
The first definition of greedy from Oxford is an “excessive desire or appetite for food”
However, it can also be “an intense and selfish desire for wealth or power”
So are there people in Trinidad and Tobago that fit that description?
Before we can answer that we often have to examine the people accusing others of being greedy.
Sometimes Trinis don’t have the best of decorum in the way they communicate as they often just share what they are thinking without any reservations.
If you haven’t seen my video called, “Lil’boy vs Single Mothers” make sure to look for it as I go deeper into this, however, to stay here let me give a simple example.
Someone might be struggling with their weight but when they are greeted by a fellow Trini the opener is…
“Aye fat boy how you looking plump so…” while this language might be considered colorful pecong it could actually be hurting the person’s self-esteem.
The irony of this is if you look at the person that is body shaming… they are also out of shape.
Sometimes people like to put down others in the hope of elevating themselves and that is not unique to Trinis, it is a bad human trait.
When I was a missionary in England we were often told to be humble because pride could easily set in.
To conquer the pride and become humble we were often told to go to what are known as council estates and clean all the garbage on the roads and in people’s yards.
That’s right. Just picture… we are dressed in suits with a black bag in hand and would go from house to house and street to street picking up garbage.
We did this as a regular thing and it humbled me quite a bit.
It showed me that I am no better than my fellow man.
It was not for me to judge why someone would keep their yard dirty it was just my job to help make it better.
So when I see someone trying to distribute food to those in need that is a good thing.
And when I see people lining up to collect that food it is not for me to say they are greedy because they are lining up to get that food.
If I were to do that then I would find myself on the side of pride, judgmental and it could just mean I am one of those who doesn’t give food from my personal supply to help others.
You see, it is so easy to say words when you are not in a situation… when you are not in the hot sun lining up to collect food.
Someone once told me if you see someone out there begging then do not think they are faking it, no one would subject themselves to being a beggar unless there was something needed or missing in their lives.
And if you think someone has no challenges or sorrow you don’t know them very well.
So back to the original question are Trinis really a greedy people?
While there may be one or two who may take advantage I can tell you that for the most part Trinis are the most giving people around.
I have seen first hand where people did not have much and would still give to others they felt needed it.
I have also seen where people have suffered a lot before coming out to ask. It is not for me to judge who needs and who doesn’t.
Like my picking up garbage scenario, I was there serve… to make it better… not characterize the people who left their garbage.
Right now we are in a pandemic… people are without work, little to no income and in desperate need of a way to pay their bills. These are times for sensitivity and understanding not put downs.
We are better than that.