Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland until I return to the Murcia region of Spain in the Autumn for a month or so
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Wednesday, 21 July 2004

Pink pound, pink dollar - but spending is discretionary

I've been reading a lot in the past week about a 'gay family-values' cruise which was taking place in the Caribbean and which was scheduled to stop in the Bahamas. There was some speculation that protests against such 'deviant' visitors might take place.

It seems that a high proportion of the passengers on the cruise ship decided that, if this was the attitude of the places the ship was to visit, then they wouldn't go on shore excursions and spend their money on people who despised them.

The economic consequences of this for some of those in the Bahamas are described here; sad as I am, in a way, that business was damaged on this occasion, another part of me is grimly amused. It's a simple fact that tourist spending is entirely discretionary and I for one can easily understand the reluctance of the passengers on this cruise to pump money into economies where the spenders, as people, are not wanted. I daresay there were plenty of onboard diversions to keep them amused.

There are a number of countries seeking to attract tourists (for example many Caribbean nations and places such as Egypt) which are, frankly, best avoided if you are gay. Not to worry, though, there are many other countries only too happy to welcome free-spending and generally trouble-free visitors - a category into which very many gay people who take regular vacations fit very easily. I would much rather spend my money in countries which welcome my custom.

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