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Old 29-08-2011, 11:43   #1
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pirate Jolly Roger, Pirates and Political Correctness

This is a topic that I think the air needs to be cleared on. I have noticed an increasing proliferation of comments on this board and in various magazines about the "glamorization" of pirates. The gist of the comments I am speaking about have been statements to the effect that we should quit flying the Jolly Rodger and glamorizing the pirate mythology because of the recent uptick in instances of piracy. The people who make these comments are of the opinion that the term "pirate" is a universally bad one. I think they miss the point. There is a difference, a big one, in the piracy we now see in Somalia and elsewhere and the mythology of the "pirate" that inspires the flying of the jolly rodger. First, and I think this is an important point, I doubt that the Somalis that attack shipping fly the Jolly Rodger, wear medically unnecessary eyepatches as a fashion statement or quote Jack Sparrow for dramatic effect. WE fly the Jolly Rodger because there is no universally accepted flag of the expat. The "Pirate" that we see in ourselves is a flaunting of the conventional, not the law. We no more mean to glamorize "real" pirates than we mean to glamorize robbers by watching movies about Robin Hood. Peter Pan, by conventional standards, is an irresponsible person To those who say flying the Jolly Ridger glamorizes piracy on the high seas I say listen to Jimmy Buffett's "A Pirate Looks at 40" to understand why we do what we do. If we allow the criminals who terrorize shipping to rob us of the mythology of Jack Sparrow or Captain Blood, then arn't we allowing them to terrorize us into changing the way we act or do things. Changing the way we behave or the way we enjoy what we do would be allowing those who would use lawlessness and terror to win. Just my opinion, and I'm sure others would disagree.
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Old 29-08-2011, 12:25   #2
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Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

Thanks for approaching it with the thoughts some could disagree.
I do.

I think people flying some Jolly Roger flag are juvenile F-wits who know bugger all about the world they live in. I felt this particularly strongly last year when I arrived in the Caribbean to a flock of silly americans flying black flags. I had just come from the Gulf of Aden and played the game for real near Somalia.

Jimmy Buffet is a US music artist. He is not known world wide. I haven't heard one of his songs since I left St Martin 6 months ago. He isn't universal even in the Caribbean.

Yes, I have mellowed a bit in the 8 months since I have been in the Caribbean. If grown up children want to wear a black patch I won't actually have a go at them.
However people do criticize those white men who dress up for a party as a negro slave. http://www.foxsports.com.au/rugby/wallabies/blackface-fans-of-radike-samo-at-wallabies-all-blacks-tri-nations-decider-give-qantas-black-eye-airline-sorry/story-e6frf55l-1226124187574
Or men who dress as women but not because they are gay or transvestite but poking fun at them. Ditto its not possible (one would think) to dress up as a Klu Klux Clan member and walk down main street Alabama and when arrested say: "I'm just having fun, get off my case!"

People dressing up for a horror party may dress as the Grim Reaper but should they drag around a machete pretending to be a rapist?

Pirates are a bit in the middle when it comes to the south eastern USA and Caribbean... the parrot on the shoulder is like a fancy dress party.... but those who have been butchered at sea; lost their life savings; or had their boat stolen or pilfered will not see the fun in you pretending to be their killer.
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Old 29-08-2011, 12:41   #3
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Re: Jolly Roger, Pirates and Political Correctness

I highly doubt anyone flying the jolly roger is trying to support or glamorize Somalian pirates. I don't believe any of them have flags on there stolen vessels letting people know who they are. I think it's all in good fun, and one has nothing to do with the other.
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Old 29-08-2011, 12:47   #4
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Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

The United States Flag Store, an advertiser on this forum, shows 15 different jolly rogers/pirate flags for sale.

Sorry. I'm prejudiced. When I see a boater routinely flying such a flag, I doubt their maturity.

Annually, "pirate day" is held in Vallejo where there are reinactments with boats shooting off blackpowder cannons and such. Pirate costumes and jolly rogers are in vogue, much like costumes for Halloween and other silly observances. However, I don't consider that in the same league as routine practice of flying the Jolly Roger.
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Old 29-08-2011, 12:47   #5
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Re: Jolly Roger, Pirates and Political Correctness

Watch it MarkJ, some of us have religious sensitivities to consider here:

Pastafarian Rituals - Uncyclopedia, the content-free encyclopedia

"Talk Like A Pirate Day, September 19th is the most blessed of all days, equivalent to Christians' "Christmas", But better. This is the day where the Flying Spaghetti Monster blesses all because they talk like pirates, be they followers of the FSM or not."
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Old 29-08-2011, 12:49   #6
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Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

I guess it depends on your location in the world.

In the Pacific North West near Seattle lots of folks fly the Jolly Roger as a sign there parting. They fly there flags like a motorcycle club has there emblem on there jackets or tatoo's. There's no pirates in colder waters like the PNW but when I was sailing in southers waters around Catalina Island CA the other sailers didn't like the flags, I guess because south of the US boarders in Mexico where pirates survive there is a problem that we up north don't have ( In cold waters pirates die quickly and no more problems GLUB GLUB with thiefs from 3rd world countries, just partiers flying a fun flag).

I think that the old fashoned Beer or Martini flags just attracts the CG to drunkin boaters, unless at dock or with the anchor down folks don't fly fun flags. Do we really live in a world where we can't express ourselfs without sturing up some "goddy 2 shoes" jurk who's been living in a 3rd country where thiefery is a way to make a living without being a banker or lawyer.
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Old 29-08-2011, 12:54   #7
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Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

Quote:
Originally Posted by markpierce View Post
Sorry. I'm prejudiced. When I see a boater routinely flying such a flag, I doubt their maturity.
Yeah or likely kids onboard / likely to be louder than average.....so IMO still serves a valuable warning purpose (I may have one somewhere I do have a full on Gorilla suit ...........albeit not onboard - that would be silly ).


Some folks just like a stick to beat others with. I guess using PC (even if self invented nonsense) is better than the old days of actually using a stick. Even if the stick was less boring.
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Old 29-08-2011, 12:57   #8
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pirate Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
I think people flying some Jolly Roger flag are juvenile F-wits who know bugger all about the world they live in. I felt this particularly strongly last year when I arrived in the Caribbean to a flock of silly americans flying black flags. I had just come from the Gulf of Aden and played the game for real near Somalia.

Jimmy Buffet is a US music artist. He is not known world wide. I haven't heard one of his songs since I left St Martin 6 months ago. He isn't universal even in the Caribbean.
And this is my concern. My original post was attacked, and the reference I made to a particular song that sums up an attitude towards life that a lot of us ascribe to was brushed off with a simple statement that his music is not known world wide, most likely without ever even listening to or reading the lyrics.

The "mythology" of the pirate, as reflected by the flying of the Jolly Rodger on a cruising boat etc, is quite different from the reality of criminal attacks on shipping. Then again, if you don't get it .....
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Old 29-08-2011, 13:00   #9
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I would like to think that if you don't lime the flag someone is flying turn your head and look the other way. It's a big damn ocean.
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Old 29-08-2011, 13:00   #10
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Re: Jolly Roger, Pirates and Political Correctness

I appreciate those pirate flags - they help me identify the people I like to stay away from. Also, it seems to be a US West coast thing (or boats from there) more than any where else. Maybe it is the strange attraction to the Latts and Atts culture out there?

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Old 29-08-2011, 13:04   #11
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Re: Jolly Roger, Pirates and Political Correctness

Mother, mother ocean
I've heard you call
Wanted to sail upon your waters
Since I was three feet tall
You've seen it all
You see it all
I've watched the men who rode you
Switched from sails to steam
And in your belly you hold the treasures
Few have ever seen
Most of them dreams
Yes I am a pirate
Two hundred years too late
The cannons don't thunder
There's nothing to plunder
I'm an over forty victim of fate
Arriving too late
I've done a bit of smuggling
And I've run my share of grass
I've made enough money to buy Miami
But I pissed it away so fast
Never meant to last
Well I have been drunk now for over two weeks
I past and I've rallied and I sprung a few leaks
But I've got to stop wishin' got to go fishin'
I'm down to rock bottom again
With just a few friends
Just a few friends
I go for younger women(Trouuubllee)
Lived with several awhile
But I've ran them away
Hell, they come back some day
And still can manage to smile
Just takes a while
It just takes a while
Mother mother ocean
After all these years I've found
This occupational hazard be
My occupations just not around
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Old 29-08-2011, 13:09   #12
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Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

[QUOTE=David_Old_Jersey;762108] likely to be louder than average.....so IMO still serves a valuable warning purpose (I may have one somewhere

Most of my friends in the Salish Sea near Seattle who flu the Jolly Roger and fire loud cannons from there yachts regularly and are between 21 and 70+ and dress the buckineer style for dock parties and fund raisers for needy kids and the Wishing Star Foundation, I guess there trying to feel young at heart and have a good time like todays Cowboys at a rodeo, dressing a part to have fun with a flag on there yacht.
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Old 29-08-2011, 13:09   #13
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Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

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Originally Posted by webejammin View Post
Do we really live in a world where we can't express ourselfs without sturing up some "goddy 2 shoes" jurk who's been living in a 3rd country.
Yes, and that can be the difficulty.
You point out well that what is acceptable in Seattle doesn't get the same points near Mexico. So even in your own country there are regional differences. How does one know the nuance of each?

One would expect Prince Harry to have known!


I'm sorry for wearing Nazi swastika, says Prince Harry - Times Online

If he didn't or couldn't put his brain into gear, or know the difference, it gets hard for everyone to be 'correct'.

Same with drawing some cartoon about a certain religious faith's prophets. Do it and there will be recriminations whether you knew you were offending someone or not. http://www.brusselsjournal.com/node/382 Jihad Against Danish Newspaper

Cruisers perhaps need to take a moment after they drop anchor and listen out for the strains of Margaretaville before hoisting the Bloody Flag. Also to perhaps ask themselves what does that flag or the Jolly Roger mean and what does it mean about me if I fly it? Will folks think I am a ding-a-ling or what will they think?
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Old 29-08-2011, 13:19   #14
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Re: Jolly Rodger, Pirates and Political Correctness

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One would expect Prince Harry to have known!
Yeah, disgusting



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Old 29-08-2011, 13:21   #15
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Re: Jolly Roger, Pirates and Political Correctness

I guess the Gasparilla Festival in Tampa is a silly, immature, childish indulgence. Unlike modern criminal piracy, Caribbean piracy is now a historical artifact and is no sillier than Halloween or Guy Faulkes day. I hope no one takes offence to the carved pumpkin on my porch. if you do, it's a big ocean. Look the other way. There's enough real bad behavior in the world to take offence to. Why don't you concentrate on that instead of complaining about a lousy flag.

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