Thursday, December 13, 2012

"By Eloquence, Inc." ...The Advantages of being Jamaican

Eloquence, Inc. is a regular reader of “Jamaican Till I Die” and makes some of the best comments on various issues. I especially love her comment on the blog "You Ungrateful Wretch! "  and think it should be a separate blog post for all to see and I would like to thank "Eloquence, Inc." for all the comments since I started this:

In response to: "You Ungrateful Wretch!"

EXCELLENT POST and PERFECT timing as we come to the end of Jamaica's 50th anniversary!

Add the Issa's and the Simonitsch's (founder of Half Moon and the all inclusive resort concept) to that list of big names!

No matter how long I have been away, I know if I could sort out a decent career opportunity down there, I would love to move back home. I am not one of the ones that ever thought anything as a child but that the sun rises and sets on Jamaica... Didn't even want to leave, parents made me. But I realize as I run into Jamaicans from other walks of life, that most think "likkle Jamaica caan do nutten fi mi" and in some cases it's true, because of the social standing they were born into and the lack of the right connections (mostly from not going to the right schools), they are achieving things in America that were not happening for them back home. BUT in some cases they apply themselves to their books and to their job opportunities in America in a way they were not doing when in Jamaica!

I met a great woman in Jamaica who yeah she mixed and red with long hair and lives in big house on Jacks Hill now, but she told her story of how she came from country bush where she use to walk with river water in bucket on her head when young, to now an entrepreneur that moved up in life!

And is not just the light and white doing it anymore. It does take links to get around the red tape but as a minority you have a better chance of respect and making the links in the first place in a place like Jamaica than somewhere like America where as you said, the same things that make you special in Jamaica make you exactly nobody here compared to the 300 million other people that might fit your racial or economic description.

My ability to get put 2 years ahead in US schools is directly due to the Jamaican education system that produced me. I thank Jamaica's culture and education all the time for making me the person that can adapt and survive and have admirable qualities as a person and make me distinctive to folks here, not just another black face. Without being Jamaican that would not be possible. And people don't realize down there that there is a GREAT power and influence on having your child grow up seeing black people in successful positions of every corner of society, in your bank, in your schools...not just out on the streets. America might be the land of opportunity but as a professional most of the black faces you see are at the bottom of the totem pole or out on the streets loafting, especially the men. In Jamaica positive black achievement is everywhere, in the classroom, bankroom, sports field... we don't grow up feeling less than everybody else or with the minority complex.

The culture and education and focus on relationships/links and not just paper contracts and money and the love of children in the society (read how many professional Americans complain of the terrible fight to live up to corporate demands which do not care about family obligations even when they say they do)...these all help people to have opportunities in Jamaica or at least a mentality that allows them to get ahead elsewhere. But I don't think even the poorest among us realize the pride and values and strength instilled in us AS JAMAICANS is what helps them no matter where they are when they get their opportunities.

Some of course are exceptions but for the most part the overall Jamaican culture produces very smart people who value relationships (part of why links end up so important to get anything done!) and family (even if the downside is people might have too many kids at times, but most of the people having them whether rich or poor genuinely love kids and having that family life!).

.... Eloquence, Inc.
Eloquence, Inc. Career Services

1 comment:

  1. omg I am SO HONOURED! Thank you! And I still mean every word! I was recently told by a friend and entrepreneur in Jamaica that my business concept (customized travel planning to Caribbean events/destinations) is solid and getting responses so instead of looking for a job in Jamaica I should be looking to grow my own business into one that can support me full-time, since it's based online and can be done from anywhere...I am definitely laying the groundwork to take his advice because "side business" could turn out to be my ticket back home! I was just down there for a week and saw some great business concepts that somebody had to start from scratch and build up as well as small business owners whether of rumbars or anything else working hard but making a LIFE right there in Jamaica! Some assume things are automatically better everywhere else but the same issues there are the same complaints here, and as I told folks when I was there, I think we are being too hard sometimes on little Jamaica: USA is a huge country and very powerful, yet still has a raging debt problem and an improper balance of trade...if the US has all that "money" and can't manage the books, why are we so hard on Jamaica for having debt and trade balance issues as well? We need to be real and more understanding of the past events that lead up to the present...and realize Jamaicans are running away from Jamaica but yet all these foreigners are coming, setting up businesses, and making a life...the "up there" folks today have ancestors in the RECENT past that worked their BACKSIDES off to set up businesses and KEEP COMING UP WITH NEW CONCEPTS that were legacies their children could build on...

    I wouldn't mind seeing people groom their children into the mindset from young that whatever business they run, the child should grow up and get the skills and training and experience needed to keep that business going when the parent is gone, and take it to the next level. A taxi driver today can be the parent of a taxi, rental, and fleet company tomorrow, and the grandparent of the kid who grows up to make it branches in every parish in JA...but instead they might grow their kids to go abroad if they can and be more than a taxi driver... so the family mash up, and all the ones abroad now wishing for the childhood and VIBES they missed out on in Ja...see what I mean?

    Anytime you ready for a trip planned to Trinidad Carnival or any other event link up you get a special! :)