Earlier in the week I ran a poll asking the question, Is It Wrong To Visit Countries With Oppressive Regimes?
My idea for the topic came about due to a post from the end of July, Send Your Kids To North Korea For What??? (With the what being- summer camp)
In the post about sending kids to summer camp in North Korea one commenter suggested that visiting North Korea meant that you were supporting the government. Linda wrote “I just don’t understand people that would support KJU by their tourism. It frankly shocks me that people do this.”
I like to think that we can all make decisions about where it is acceptable to visit for ourselves. I don’t feel that I am in a position to judge anyone else. A very basic example of this might be related not to another country but to Sea World.
After watching the documentary Blackfish, I decided that I would not visit or support Sea World due to their abusive treatment of killer whales. However, if you decide to go that is your choice. I might suggest that you watch the documentary when you have a chance but you can decide for yourself what is right or wrong. (I wrote a post about Southwest continuing their sponsorship of Sea World back in January. At the end of last month it was announced that Southwest would stop sponsoring Sea World.)
Anyway, back to the poll results. I gave a choice of 4 answers to my question and here is what people felt.
- I voted that everyone has a right to decide for themself. This was the overall winner with 18 votes (which came to 31% of the total).
- Those answering no came to 13 votes (22% overall).
- Besides for those who voted “no”, voters who picked from the other 3 options all felt it is acceptable in one way or another to visit countries with oppressive regimes. These options combined for 46 votes (78% of the vote).
In the end I still say, do what you feel is right for you. Just don’t do anything dangerous and try to travel in a way that won’t get you into any trouble.
Safe travels to all!