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Old 10-10-2005, 00:23   #1
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Rights? What rights.....

This past summer we cruised the coast of France, Portugal and Spain and on into the Med.
Around July we overheard on the radio some form of 'EU Interception Zone' being applied and for over a month the radio waves were alive with various warships - US, Brit, French, Spanish, Portuguese etc - intercepting coasters, ships and smaller vessels. Often we could view up to six warships on the horizon - and all were very polite at least on the radio.

So - was I worried about my 'rights' being effected?
Afraid not.

Knowing I had warships guarding my right to travel by intercepting people who might one day stop me doing this safely was actually very comforting.

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Old 11-10-2005, 00:18   #2
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You make an interesting point, however, over enforcement is every bit as bad as under enforcement. It is a fine line, and one I am glad I am not responsible for defining.
Law enforcement is a very necessary thing, but abuse in law enforcement is a very real problem.
While it may be comforting to see those boats out there getting the bad guys, how would it effect your life to be "detained" for a month, and your boat confiscated out of "suspision", and what about the unrecoverable costs? Legal fees? bailing out your boat while it is tied up in red tape? A law enforcement, albiet military in that part of the world, presence can be a great deterent for piracy, but when those same law enforcement start to abuse their power, who is worse?
I have not cruised in that part of the world, so I have not experienced the fear you apparently feel sailing in those waters, but I have the threat from both sides of the law.
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Old 11-10-2005, 02:24   #3
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Quote:
Kai Nui once whispered in the wind:
You make an interesting point, however, over enforcement is every bit as bad as under enforcement. I have not cruised in that part of the world, so I have not experienced the fear you apparently feel sailing in those waters, but I have the threat from both sides of the law.
Hi,

I'd agree no one should wish for unnecessary policing but it is a sad fact that today we seem to have more bad guys out there globally - and I really do not think that's untrue even if it's often exaggerated for political effect.

More bad guys means we sadly need more good guys - or at least a bigger community working to combat the issues.

So I guess the key words has to be 'good guys'.

If any police or naval force is silly enough to distance the 'good guy' sailors, then they are missing an opportunity to have those same sailors supporting their 'good guy' efforts.

In this part of the world I am pleased to say any interventions by police or naval forces tend to be really polite and rarely intrusive...........but if recent TV coverage is any guide, I can possibly understand your position in the USA.

In regard to my 'apparent fear' - I don't worry at all about sailing in EU or Med waters. Our plans for 2006 will take us onward to Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Egypt where I also fully expect to find mutual respect twix the police / military / sailors.......

If I don't find this - I'll let you know.

Cheers
JOHN
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Old 11-10-2005, 11:00   #4
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Kai Nui put in two key phrases "abuse their power" & "over enforcement". These items are what must be kept in check and it is "our part" as citizens to keep the government in check politely, professionally and peacefully.

Putting up unjustified resistance to the forces that are only trying to do their job only creates suspicion and that's what usually is the start of over enforcement. Have you ever had to wrestle down a bad kid? It's the same thing.

Personally, I too welcome the forces out there, especially in these times. I live close to the border here where there are a lot of Middle Easter’s. So, I personally keep an eye out when I'm out on the water. And if I were to see suspicious activity, who am I suppose to call? Ch. 16 is my choice. And if they're not close at hand the "bad guys" get away.

So, I guess Swagman and I pretty much see eye to eye on this one. And yes, the media over exaggerates what they report. Their job is to bring in the $$$, and BAD sells................................._/)
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Old 11-10-2005, 15:42   #5
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Fear!

Do you really think there are more "bad guys" today than 10 years ago? Than 20 years ago? Or even 200 years ago? I would highly doubt the percentage of "bad guys" is any higher now than it ever was in history. It's just that everyone is so scared of everything... not through their own fault, but through a constant barrage of media putting fear in everyone's hearts.

Think about bird flu. It's a million in one shot of it mutating to jump human to human, but I bet there are hundreds of thousands of people who walk around all day scared to death of it - even though it's not in the USA, and isn't even spreading around in the human population anwhere on the globe.

And the minute it breaks out, those with fear will vote to give the govt powers to quarantine, sequester, and admit drugs at will to whoever they want. This is how we lose our rights... through FEAR driving our acceptance of things like the Patriot Act.

Same with bringing an arsenal with you cruising, same as looking at every guy with a Middle Eastern look to him and thinking he's up to no good. Picking out suspicious people is a good thing, and their actions give them away very quickly (glancing around, nervous, big coat on a hot day, etc...), but living in fear is bad for everyone.

I'm not saying you shouldn't preapre for things, but to realize that people really aren't much different now than they ever were in history.
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Old 11-10-2005, 18:06   #6
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Sean proposes “...that everyone is so scared of everything... not through their own fault ...” and submits that ”...people really aren't much different now than they ever were ...”

I think that our risk-aversion, and hence fear-level, has increased dramatically over the past 35 years or so. This is concurrent with an increasing demand for instant gratification, and a loss of respect (for ourselves, others, nearly everything).

These three (and perhaps other) transformations are shaping the degeneration of our societies, and people(s). We are different - and I don’t like it!!!
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Old 12-10-2005, 08:38   #7
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Hi Gord,

Seems this is getting way off the orginal subject - but here goes - as I'd like to differ with these views.

Could we separate the issues you put up?

1. I don't think most people are actually more 'risk adverse' than in years before.
We see more jumping off bridges on bungey cords, more leaping off buildings with parachutes, more people taking adventure vacations, and clearly many more people setting off cruising on yachts.
That shows me more people than ever before are happy to take risks - it is just that the overall number has gone up - so you may hear a bit more from the same percent who get a bit worried.

2. I don't see our societies as degenerating like you do.

I think globally that a majority of societies today are much better than they have ever been. Remember recent history. Labour riots. Child labour. Segregation... the list is almost endless of terriblwe thinks happening in the past. Thank goodness today most of the above has gone from many parts other world, and the rest is slowly catching up also.

_________

But I would back one point you make - about the 'lack of respect' - and would wish to tie this into the orginal subject of 'what rights' when a policeman boards your vessel.

I'd have to agree it really pisses me off when respect is not accorded to me, but I guess it would equally piss off a boarding policement if it's not accorded to him either.

Especially as he works for a lousy salary and is actually at the receiving end of real violence when he meets a bad guy.

So getting right back to it - my worry about the orginal thread - which was all about 'our rights' - did I think miss the point that maybe I did not get over well enough before.

If we all stop thinking about only our own rights, and gave more thought to the 'right' of others (and by doing so all gave of respect) - then maybe - just maybe - we'd all be accorded that respect back?

Phew - a nice discussion thread. But that's enough on this from me!! I'm off sailing for 5 days and hope you all have as good a time as I am planning to have..................

Take Care
JOHN

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Old 12-10-2005, 11:27   #8
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John:
A very elegant segue ”... about the 'lack of respect' - and would wish to tie this into the orginal subject ...”, and continuing ”... If we all stop thinking about only our own rights, and gave more thought to the 'right' of others (and by doing so all gave of respect) - then maybe - just maybe - we'd all be accorded that respect back? ...”

Here, here - Aye, aye - Amen - and all that !
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