'Not From Here,' stories by Nathan Deuel

Cruise ships still docking with merrymakers at Haiti beaches

Labadee Haiti

The gorgeous beach of Labadee, Haiti, heavily guarded for your vacation enjoyment. (Image by Randy Lemoine via Flickr)

I’ve never had high esteem for cruises, which seem to reward laziness, fear, and are built on the idea that it’s actually okay to dump human shit straight into the ocean. But this story from the Guardian seems to defy all standards of human decency:

Sixty miles from Haiti’s devastated earthquake zone, luxury liners dock at private beaches where passengers enjoy jetski rides, parasailing and rum cocktails delivered to their hammocks.

The 4,370-berth Independence of the Seas, owned by Royal Caribbean International, disembarked at the heavily guarded resort of Labadee on the north coast on Friday; a second cruise ship, the 3,100-passenger Navigator of the Seas is due to dock.

The Florida cruise company leases a picturesque wooded peninsula and its five pristine beaches from the government for passengers to “cut loose” with watersports, barbecues, and shopping for trinkets at a craft market before returning on board before dusk. Safety is guaranteed by armed guards at the gate.

via Cruise ships still find a Haitian berth | World news | The Guardian.

Some passengers are reportedly “sickened” by the situation. One guys talks about how inappropriate it is to eat a cheeseburger when people are piled up dead in the streets of Port-au-Prince.

It’s easy to be outraged. Then again, what did you have for lunch, on dry land?

(It should be said: The ships do carry considerable loads of aid, according to cruise officials.)

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Filed under: Haiti, World, , , , ,

One Response

  1. ndeez says:

    Conceded: it’s borderline tasteless to continue with your vacation plans in the wake of this destruction.

    But consider this: in an already (pre-earthquake) devastated economy, are you seriously advocating removing a source of jobs and income, even temporarily? Cuz that seems as heartless as frolicking in the sand sixty miles away.

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