Last week I wrote how you could now send your kids to North Korea for summer camp. In the post I jokingly mentioned the idea of sending Lucas to camp there for a week so Kim and I could go on one of the tours of the closed-off country.
Some people weren’t sure if I was joking or not and were very against my plan. Others mentioned that they would “refuse to support a government responsible for atrocities that we know are rampant in N. Korea”.
Now I’m not going to claim to be an expert of any kind on the state of North Korea, but I do know some people that have been on these guided tours. I know that they are not the most authentic experience considering all tours require a government minder to monitor what is and is not allowed to be seen.
One of the commenters on my post from last week- Linda wrote “I just don’t understand people that would support KJU by their tourism. It frankly shocks me that people do this.”
I responded by writing “There are many countries that people visit that do not treat their people well yet tourists still go. I would like to visit N.Korea to see it in person although I know it will not be an authentic experience. Would I really send my kiddie there, no- I was kidding around”.
Linda then responded with ” And justifying bad behavior by pointing to other bad behavior is one of the lowest forms of argument but is sometimes one’s only resort when arguing from such a weak position. Like my mom would say, “Would you jump off a bridge if everyone else was doing it”. I believe in promoting responsible tourism”.
Now I wasn’t trying to justify any bad behavior or what is right or wrong. To be honest, who am I to judge where a person visits? That is a personal decision.
Commenter Linda mentioned how it is wrong to visit (and essentially support the government of) North Korea. I have read some of the crazy things the government has done but would never claim to be any sort of expert with my limited readings.
Maybe I am a bit naive when it comes to these issues.
The world as a whole can visit Cuba but for us Americans it is off-limits unless we overly pay to visit as part of a tour. Is it acceptable to visit Myanmar (Burma)? What about the oppressive Arab states where women’s rights are a joke? Should we stop visiting Russia due to the aggressive actions it is taking in Ukraine?
Again, whose right is it to judge?
Let us know how you feel about this issue in the poll below.
Is it acceptable to visit countries with oppressive regimes?
- Everyone has a right to decide for themself what is right (31%, 18 Votes)
- It depends on which country (27%, 16 Votes)
- No (22%, 13 Votes)
- Yes (20%, 12 Votes)
Total Voters: 59