To the editor,
Re: Cruise visitors won’t be impressed by tent city, Letters, Sept. 6.
A number of writers have bemoaned the fact that our infamous tent city might not impress cruise ship visitors. Well, isn’t that just too bad! Are we supposed to hide inconvenient situations in order to pander to these visitors, most of whom will only be here for part of a day?
In several locations over the years I have witnessed the negative effects of cruise ships essentially taking over a whole town or island for a day while their clients are driven, in scores of minivans, from one sight to another, to the detriment of local operations. Examples I remember are places where locals and individual tourists had to be kept away from a waterfall while the cruise ship clients lined up to get their pictures taken, and a restaurant that I was dining in that was taken over by hundreds of them lining up to use the washrooms, while complaining about the lack of adequate facilities for these pandered guests.
It’s a myth that cruise ship clients stimulate the local economy, since most of them don’t spend anything, and can’t wait to get back to their ship in time for lunch or dinner.
Do we really want to encourage this kind of tourism? And in any case why should we pretend that we don’t have a homeless problem, most cities do.
James Hudson, Nanaimo
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Tent city shouldn’t receive, for free, what others pay for
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