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Old 08-25-2009
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Interesting.

Her age and her boat's capabilities notwithstanding, a couple of things struck me.

From a legal stand point, it's amazing to this American that a court in the Netherlands could presume to strip the parents of their guardianship and make the girl a ward of the state, all for something that has not even happened. They are simply discussing plans and taking steps which would lead to her sailing around the world solo -- is this a thought crime in the Netherlands now??

There is no mention of any prior history of parental abuse. Unless they allege that her prior seven-week solo trip, which was successfully completed with no harm coming to the child, amounts to abuse and or neglect? If so, that is an extraordinary leap. What next? Was I abusing my children by letting them solo sail our dinghy when they were 5 years old?

And why is it that parents must get the permission of the State to withdraw their children from the school system? Have the European governments really intruded this much into their citizen's private lives? Here in the U.S., no such "permission" is required. Parents have the final say on their children's educational pursuits.

Couldn't her parents simply travel with her to another country and have her depart from there? Or will the State actually block their right to travel, as well?
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Pacific Seacraft Crealock 31 #62

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