Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I shot the sherrif

Tomorrow I run.  Can’t wait, actually.


But first:


Ok, last Wednesday there was a robbery in Jamaica.  No big deal, sure.  There are plenty of robberies there.  It’s a poor island.  Stuff happens.


Except this was a robbery of a lily white tour group from the Carnival Conquest while they were on an excursion to a banana plantation on the island.


**Disclaimer:  I went on the Conquest the week before the robbery and I fell in love with the whole damn country.  I’m totally going to move there and open up a barbeque stand.  Oh my GOD IT’S A FABULOUS PARADISE THERE!!!


Ok, back to the robbery.

A group of 17 tourists were on an excursion (here is where I include the obligatory women and children part, sigh).  Armed bandit came out of the bushes—one guy with a gun, one with a machete—and they began to rough up the women and scare the children (but fuck the guys, kill and maim them all you want) and stole passports, credit cards, cash, etc.  Nobody was hurt.  A few folks were scared.  That’s all.


2 days later one of the thieves were shot dead by local law enforcement.


A post to a message board about the incident was “at least some justice was served”.


Excuse me, but justice?  JUSTICE?  17 people going on a vacation that cost more than most people on that island make in 5 years, on an excursion to a destination that most residents couldn’t afford admittance to, are robbed of maybe 2 days’ wages and of nothing that couldn’t be replaced (except cash, stupid tourists) and killing one of the guys is JUSTIFIED?  Huh?  How so?  I just don’t understand that logic.  Because you created some minor discomfort, you must lose your life AND your family lose a source of livelihood, a village a source of production, etcetera.


No, the robbery was not appropriate.  It was illegal.  It was immoral.  But then again, which of these folks would have given freely if asked?  Sure, they all say they would… now.  But would they really have freely given before?  Honestly I didn’t care much about dickering over a buck here or there.  I paid $3 for a $2 beer, no sweat.  It was a good beer.  Really good beer.  I left more than my cash on that island. 


Here’s an idea.  Instead of killing all the folks who are preying on tourists, maybe try and figure out a way to raise the tide so that the tourists aren’t preying on a cheap and backwards island.  Maybe if you raise the tide and invest in means for these people, the lily white sunburned tourists won’t have such giant targets on their backs.



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