Selfishness rather than Unity characterises Caribbean Sports

Theirs is a most appalling legacy in respect of their consistent failure to take the regional unity process forward. It should therefore be easy to understand their lethargy in recognising the potential of sport for bringing a nation and a region together.
Brazil is a very fine example of how sport fosters nationalism. It is not just football but also volleyball that has become intense passions among Brazilians.
In the case of football one recalls that in 1970 when the football coach decided that Tostao and Pele were of the same playing style and decided to omit the legendary Pele from the team to the 1968 World Cup in Mexico, the President of the Brazilian government intervened and sacked the coach. He knew that Pele was an icon and that the nation would not have allowed the travesty to go ahead without calling upon the same government to step in. Such is the significance of the game to the Brazilians.
In the Caribbean we have watched as governments elevate themselves on the backs of the achievements of sportsmen and sportswomen in one country after another yet fail to appreciate the vast potential of sport to the realisation of the genuine development. Still, they speak seemingly endless platitudes of nonsense about the value of sport without doing what is required to facilitate national consensus on sport and its role in national and regional development.
Caribbean unity is as far from realisation today as it has ever been. Sport does not now play any significant role in bringing us together in the region. If anything, individual countries take the opportunity to bask in the glory of the achievements of their respective athletes in whatever sport and do not care what other neighbouring Caribbean countries may think about these very achievements.
The politicians will talk and the athletes will compete. In both instances they continue to be as far apart as the islands that sprout up in the Caribbean Sea.