What Do You Think of Trinidad’s Shaq Attack?

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So Dr Shaquille O’Neal came to Trinidad. Yayyyyy. We big. Maybe we might make it onto Necole Bitchie, and look like we in ting.

Whatever you think about the Government bringing Dr O’Neal aka Shaq to Trinidad, chances are that there are others who are thinking just like you.

So, instead of me attempting to climb onto a soapbox, and air my grouses, or lack thereof, I thought it’d be a lot more interesting, if I shared some of the comments I saw on Facebook and Trinituner’s forum, and then add my two cents. I couldn’t include all, but you’ll get the drift.

Some people were pleased. Some weren’t. Some decided to catch kicks off of it. Some people were very serious about defending the Government, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, and/or Shaq. Whatever the perspective, each status tells you something about how some citizens think.

Let’s get started.

“What he gonna do, teach her how to play basket ball? -_-”

Ugh… he kinda did.


“Why Trinidadians so? It’s for the youths so he can motivate them into baseketball and other stuff alyuh just sad yes!”

Damn skippy! Why people pessimistic so? Always want to bring down every positive thing other people try to do. Doh mind it cost millions. Doh mind we’re not sure it’ll generate results.

“What a huge man…lol”

Well that one was obvious.

“Shaq better check his pocket before leaving, Jack is standing to close”


“Why are people asking dumb questions? When they know that the history of our crime emanate from an mostly an American way of life. Therefore who is best to advise us on methods of correction? Not they themselves, and see that Shaq had some local experiences in the area also growing up in the hood, why not, it’s the very same reason that we have a foriegn base CoP Gibbs, people are so naive they play dumb on the issues.”

I like the Shakespearean approach here. “Therefore who is best to advise us on methods of correction? Not they themselves…” Okay, so the punctuation is a bit off (yes the Grammar nazi in me flared, so I just had to fix one or two things, without going into full edit mode), but I give this person an A for effort. An A for trying to take a very intellectual, passionate approach.

However, Shaq is not Superman, as much as he likes to wear an “S” on his chest. Shaq alone isn’t enough to get youths on the right side of the law – ideals of the benefits of involvement in sports aside. Sports does not work wonders for everyone.

Which brings me to…

Obama can take on Shaq any day?

I’m all for Obama. He can play basketball, and talk some real sense. A doctor or a lawyer? They didn’t even get me excited when I was in secondary school. They won’t work on the youth.

I can understand the “them lil n boys only good for sports and music” line (you all know what the “n” is for, right?). But let’s look on the bright side?

The party’s usual racist vein? As someone who’s sometimes mistaken for an Indian (long, black hair, with a mixed look does not equal Indian people), I tend to ignore all of these sorts of racial undertones in our country. Frankly, I’m tired of it. But if it was in a rural community in South, and the Government brought down Sachin Tendulkar, would we say the same thing?

Wait…we would. Check this one out.

“I can’t believe this actually happened. I wonder when is she going to bring Tendulkar in Debe?”

Didn’t think I needed to add anything here.

“The Gov’t only on PR ohhh look Shaq steupssssssss.”

Yuh know! Almost everyone thought this.

“Ah wonder if the money they spent to bring him trini, if that cud of helped beetham gardens?????”

Yuh have a puh-puh-puh-point!

“He ruined that steel film. I hate that he is sporting the tee.”

Wow…I didn’t even think about that. This here is a budding movie critic.

Shaquille O'Neal in "Steel".

“Probably is to show dem lil youth men that black people could make it too and actually do something positive with their lives instead of smoking weed, stealing etc…”

Because only black people smoke weed and steal.

“Lolololol…why allyuh doh try and do something for beetham then? too much online whining n ting yes. if allyuh feel allyuh cud do better, then pics or stfu”

I don’t know what he means by “pics”, but I feel him on this. Enough of the online whining. Do something.

“Men gonna start untying jordans and air max from the overhead lines now. Lvl bounce ball gonna be played”

Memories…last time I saw shoes on a line was in “Fast and Furious Five”.

“Daz shaq or jes some beetam gang leader?”

*Drops heads in hands. Sighs.*

“Nice message from shaq hope the youths take up the challenge”

Me too. Me too. It’ll also make me feel good about paying taxes.

“Wow i hope Shaq’s not reading this smh.”

Because he would do what?

“He came for her daughter’s party after school going to high school grad party and decided in order to write it off they needed to make it a publicity stunt that it is for motivitional purposes for the low income people of tnt”

I really don’t know if the party talk was true, but this comment alone is evidence that the Government needed to spend some of that money on adult literacy and English classes.

“Kamla and Jack is not good for us!”

Kamla and Jack are not good for us! Grammar people. Grammar!

“Shaq,welcome to Sweet TNT,hope u enjoy your stay!!!!and ppl whatever reason he is here for,we should be proud that someone of such great stature graced our beautiful shores!!!!come back for Carnival 2013”

I liked the feel-good factor of this comment. Yes Shaq. Come back in 2013. And bring other US celebrities with you. That way, we can say that your fee was worth it. Not only would crime decrease, but we’d also get a boost in celebrity tourism and US media visibility.

See, there are so many ways to look at the Government’s decision to make Dr Shaquille O’Neal the face of their multimillion-dollar, anti-crime initiative “Hoops of Life”. Now that we’ve seen some of the comments out there, tell me, what’s your take on it?


Image credits: nigeriansreport.com; newsday.co.tt; sportsillustrated.com; i09.com; yanswersblog.com.

Karel Mc Intosh

Karel Mc Intosh is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Outlish Magazine. She's also the Lead Communications Trainer at Livewired Group, where she conducts workshops in business writing, social media, and other communications areas. A real online junkie, when she isn't surfing the Internet, she's thinking about surfing the Internet. Find out more about her here or tweet her @outlishmagazine.



    July 3, 2012 at 11:58 am

    Karel!!! Great job. This was one funny @outlishmagazine piece! @shaq

  2. Karel McIntosh

    July 9, 2012 at 12:16 am

    Thanks Jay. Glad you enjoyed it. :)

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