Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten - Page 4 - SailNet Community
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post #31 of 80 Old 01-24-2012
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When the three teenage girls all started their voyages at about the same time, this and other sites were filled with piss and vinegar on both sides of the argument. My first reaction (as the father of a 14 year old at the time) was that if there were any blame to be assessed, it should be directed at the parents of these girls who let them go on (or paid for, supported, etc) these voyages. However, since then, I have started to feel differently. I suppose there must be teenagers who are mature enough, and maybe even skilled enough to take on the challenges of a such a voyage. I certainly don't know any, but I have come to believe that if there are any, then their parents would be the ones best equipped to make that decision. This of course assumes that the parents are truly acting in the child's best interests and not living their own dreams out through their offspring (which is another question all on its own). In any case, Laura's voyage made the most sense to me: no hurry, no pressure to go non-stop, no Cape Horn heroics.

Congratulations to her.
I basically agree except 14 is too young for this sort of thing. A mature, knowledgeable 16 or older, maybe but 14 is still a child no matter how precocious. Can you imagine her going ashore in a place like Colon? There's a whole lot more to sailing alone around the world than boathandling skills - that's why so few people have done it. Is it still true that more people have walked on the Moon than singlehanded around the world? I remember some years back it was but with the recent races and such......

Having said that, she pulled it off which is more than most of us old farts will ever be able to say. I wouldn't have let my kid do it though.

What is she now? 15 or 16? I'd go with her as my SKIPPER now.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.

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post #32 of 80 Old 01-25-2012
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Whether her family is of means or not, I appreciate how this accomplishment was handled relatively quietly (Dutch authorities notwithstanding). It's sort of a 'Young Person Gets to Dream, Live Dream', headline.

The fame whoring family, corporate slutting, and spin of 'girl against the world' did not seem to be present this time.

I'm really happy for her. And while I question letting someone so young do this, I look back and understand that if I'd the chance when young, I'd of been all over the opportunity.

Laura, I'm glad you did it, fought through the rough times, appreciated and made the most of the chance, and came out the other side with a level head.

Go make the rest of your life a happy one.

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post #33 of 80 Old 01-25-2012
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post #34 of 80 Old 01-25-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SloopJonB View Post
I basically agree except 14 is too young for this sort of thing. A mature, knowledgeable 16 or older, maybe but 14 is still a child no matter how precocious. Can you imagine her going ashore in a place like Colon? There's a whole lot more to sailing alone around the world than boathandling skills - that's why so few people have done it. Is it still true that more people have walked on the Moon than singlehanded around the world? I remember some years back it was but with the recent races and such......

Having said that, she pulled it off which is more than most of us old farts will ever be able to say. I wouldn't have let my kid do it though.

What is she now? 15 or 16? I go with her as my SKIPPER now.
That is one issue we have not seen mentioned in this thread yet. She is a good looking young lady. When she pulls into port she must of had gotten the attention of many guys. But from what I have read and seen on her web site she had a big welcome from the local media and was taken care of in every port she stopped at along the way. I'm sure the cruising community adopted her in each port and watched her back.
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post #35 of 80 Old 03-21-2012
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Re: Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten

I, as a professional mariner have been a supporter of Laura from the beginning, because of having a Dutch sailing friend that was a neighbor of her and her dad that was able to give me some insight. She does posses a 6th sense about sailing that most of us could only dream of attaining and I include myself, and I have an Unlimited Tonnage license, grad of CMA.

I don't begrudge her the opportunity she now has to capitalize on what her skill set and determination has allowed her to accomplish. I have and always will be an ardent supporter of Laura. It is the choosing of Lyall Mercer, media hound and ambulance chaser extraordinaire, as her PR rep, that I feel taints her accomplishments. Just research his involvement with QANTAS Flight QF72 and you will see firsthand the bottom feeder this guy is. There are plenty of PR firms that help a client navigate the media in a positive light, but Laura's people went with Mercer.

Laura, Jessica, and Abby share the same PR firm, so I guess this is what Laura has to look forward to

DANCING WITH THE STARS Can you pick out Jessica Watson?




I guess if this is what she wants, she picked the right PR firm. I have a hunch, the PR firm picked her, since Mercer seems to have a thing for teenage sailor girls.

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post #36 of 80 Old 03-22-2012
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Re: Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten

Why as time goes on does mankind take longer to mature? 2,000 years ago girls were commonly married at 12 years old and soon there after raise a family. If a 12 year old girl is capable (as history has shown us it is) then I see no reason why a 14 year old could then not single hand a sailboat around the world today.
http://www.keithhunt.com/Mariage1.html

Seems it has more to do with the way children are raised that limits the child than the true abilities of the child.
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Re: Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten

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That is one issue we have not seen mentioned in this thread yet. She is a good looking young lady. When she pulls into port she must of had gotten the attention of many guys. But from what I have read and seen on her web site she had a big welcome from the local media and was taken care of in every port she stopped at along the way. I'm sure the cruising community adopted her in each port and watched her back.
Quite true. Nick, a friend of mine aboard his Sundeer 64, S/V Jedi, met up with Laura in Colon, Panama last year. Also Dutch, he invited her over for a Dutch-Indian dinner he prepared. He sent me some original pictures he had taken of her that I posted to my forum, and later her "handlers" forced my server host to removed the 18 page thread on Laura and her travels. Most everything on that thread was original material from me, Nick, and MacG, her neighbor in the Dutch marina she and her dad lived.






And so her "handlers" don't give Sailnet any grief, look closely bottom right corner of each picture and notice the water mark, so blow it out your .....

Bob
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post #38 of 80 Old 03-22-2012
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Re: Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten

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Why as time goes on does mankind take longer to mature? 2,000 years ago girls were commonly married at 12 years old and soon there after raise a family.
2000 years ago they generally only lived 35 or 40 years, if they didn't die in childbirth.

That was then, this is now. The two have nothing to do with each other. The girl was a child when she left and it was poor judgement on her parents part to allow it, her subsequent success notwithstanding. How many circumstances did she survive just on luck for example?

Look at the pictures of her - she should still be in a pink bedroom with plush toys on the bed, not alone on the ocean, one of the most unforgiving places on Earth.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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Re: Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten

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2000 years ago they generally only lived 35 or 40 years, if they didn't die in childbirth.

That was then, this is now. The two have nothing to do with each other. The girl was a child when she left and it was poor judgement on her parents part to allow it, her subsequent success notwithstanding. How many circumstances did she survive just on luck for example?

Look at the pictures of her - she should still be in a pink bedroom with plush toys on the bed, not alone on the ocean, one of the most unforgiving places on Earth.
I beg to differ.

The two have everything to do with each other. How many circumstances do any of us survive just on luck no matter what our age (I can count many for myself, some people I have known did not). So just because we might live to 90 years old means we can wait until we are 30 to "grow up"? I think the most violent of America's inner cities are far more dangerous to todays youth than any ocean.
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Re: Laura Dekker makes land on St Maarten

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2000 years ago they generally only lived 35 or 40 years, if they didn't die in childbirth.

That was then, this is now. The two have nothing to do with each other. The girl was a child when she left and it was poor judgement on her parents part to allow it, her subsequent success notwithstanding. How many circumstances did she survive just on luck for example?

Look at the pictures of her - she should still be in a pink bedroom with plush toys on the bed, not alone on the ocean, one of the most unforgiving places on Earth.
She has been sailing all her life, and obviously had the maturity to handle the challenges. I'm not sure if I as a parent would have had her pursue her dream, but her parents know her better then any one of us arm chair critics.



Why are people happy to accept science which makes their life easier while rejecting science that makes their faith or beliefs more difficult?

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