I am speaking most specifically about the behaviors of those on board and those in charge.
We have a leader that, it appears, did everything possible to preserve his own backside, while he willfully allowed passengers to fend for themselves and, for some, to die.
We have citizens on board who, from some accounts, seem to have taken the “every man for himself” attitude quite literally.
It was 100 years ago this year that the Titanic sank. From many accounts of that event, the evacuation mostly included women and children, the captain went down with the ship and many men died in order to save their families.
This year, in a similar disaster, we have reports of men racing to the front to get on the lifeboats, pregnant women forced to stay onboard, and the captain leaving ship while others are evacuated.
There is a report that the captain was “showboating” and was too close to the shore which may have caused the entire disaster.
In a time when our political leaders, like the captain, have abandoned their principles and what is best for our country, and many citizens have soaked in the class warfare of “what’s yours should be mine”—-can we really be surprised at the behavior of people on a sinking ship?
Blogger Pundit and Pundette says it out loud on a recent blog post: “What a difference a century makes“.
Men refused to prioritise women, expectant mothers and children as they pushed themselves forward to escape. Crew ignored their passengers – leaving ‘chefs and waiters’ to help out. [. . .]
‘I was standing by the lifeboats and men, big men, were banging into me and knocking the girls. It was awful. There was a total lack of organisation. There was no one telling people where to go.
‘And when we finally got into a lifeboat, people, grown men, were trying to jump into the boat. I thought, if they land in here we are going to capsize.
And the captain abandoned the ship and boarded a lifeboat while the evacuation of 4200 people was underway.
In a translation released by Reuters, Gregorio De Falco, the port captain at Livorno, is heard ordering Schettino – who said he was in a lifeboat – back to the Costa Concordia:
Coast Guard: “Listen Schettino, there are people trapped on board. Now you need to go on your life boat, under the bow of the ship on the side. There is a ladder. You need to climb up the ladder and board the ship. Get on board and report to me how many people there are. Is that clear?. . . .
“Schettino: “At this moment the ship is tilted.”
Coast Guard: “I understand. Listen, there are people who are coming down the ladder on the bow. Go back in the opposite direction, get back on the ship, and tell me how many people there are and what they have on board. . . . Tell me if there are children, women and what type of help they need. And you tell me the number of each of these categories. Is that clear? . . . Listen Schettino, perhaps you have saved yourself from the sea but I will make you look very bad. I will make you pay for this. Dammit, go back on board!”
Schettino: “Please . . . “
Although, the CBS News article says the captain may not have acted as heinously as it first appears, one still has to wonder about the character of a captain who leaves the ship while thousands are still aboard.
Still yet, their the report that the entire accident may have occurred due to “showboating” that the captain apparently approved:
The cruise operator has said Schettino strayed from the ship’s authorized course into waters too close to the perilous reef.
The nautical version of a “fly by” was apparently a favor to the chief waiter who is from Giglio and whose parents live on the island, local media reported. Prosecutor Francesco Verusio called Schettino’s maneuver “reckless” and “inexcusable.”
But, perhaps, all is not lost. From the CBS News article:
Corriere della Sera also reportsthat the crew mutinied, ordering passengers into lifeboats before the captain issued an abandon ship order.
And the captain has been arrested and faces potential charges of manslaughter.
What a tragedy for the families affected by this catastrophe….and a tragedy for society.