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Warning: Reading Warning Labels May Cause Eye Strain

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Tragically, recently a passenger on a Star Clipper’s ship was murdered (knifed to death) during the ship’s call on Antigua. As a reaction Star Clipper has cancelled future stops in Antigua, and possibly justifiably so

However as I followed the reporting of this incident I’ve read several accounts where the upset passengers were blaming the cruise line for not issuing any warnings about the possibility of danger on the island.

Seeing these reports made me wonder if the passengers saying this were really serious about their comments, or were they somehow thinking that saying it would set them up in better position for some kind of law suit, or compensation bid?

Do we have to be forewarned to realize that bad things, and yes even murder, can take place when you travel, and can also happen…even if you don’t?

Do we all need to post warning signs on our homes, forewarning visitors that it is possible an airplane could drop out of the sky, burst into flames in our home, and kill everyone present?

Should every entry point to every city have a “warning label” stating “Crime Happens Here”? Or is possible that we ourselves need to assume we take on certain risks by living?

No doubt each of us, in our home cities and towns have areas in the community which we will avoid visiting because we understand the risk of something bad happening to us increase in those areas.

Yet, when we board a cruise ship, we seem to want to turn off our brains, and make someone else (the cruise line) responsible for keeping us safe, or at the very least informing us of all possible dangers.

Yet we’ll board ships carrying all sort of contraband – such as irons, candles, or excess liquor, which automatically decrease the safe environment we expect the cruise line to establish and maintain for us while we travel.

It seems there are many cruisers traveling to locales where the they should simply understand that poverty is prevalent, and in some cases even the security forces (like Police) are ineffective, or worse yet, possibly corrupt. In spite of knowing this, these people seem to think a cruise line can, and even should, be capable of keeping them safe from any incidents of wrong doing.

People will complain bitterly about their governments making laws which infringe on their rights and freedoms, and then demand the government make laws and act to infringe the rights of others. It sounds absurd because it is. But that seems to be the way we operate; and we carry that same unsound thinking with us when we cross the gangway and board a ship.

We want to be protected from everything that can happen to us, including ourselves. But, we’ll often do whatever we can to make that job more difficult.

Do you think ship’s should quit calling at Antiqua because it’s unsafe?…. or is everywhere unsafe if you travel? Should cruise ships have warning labels painted on the hull?

Here’s a philosophy that I believe we should all live by…

“Warning: Do not use a thermometer orally, that has previously been used rectally“.


– A View From the Kuki Side of Cruising –



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Comment from Debra
Time February 3, 2010 at 9:40 pm

Thanks for another interesting and thoughtful article.

My opinion is that there is something to be said for both sides. While I don’t know the whole story of what happened in Antigua and therefore can’t comment either way about whether or not there should have been some kind of warning or at least advice. I know on our last cruise there were certain ports that we were warned by the cruise line to only travel in groups, which is just common sense to me when traveling in any new place.

Looking at the other side of the analogy about the airplane, I would ask that, if an airline knew that one of their engines on certain planes was prone to failure once in awhile, then should the passengers be advised or warned before they bought their ticket?

There is always some risk in everything that we do and that just a part of life.


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