Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Greece: Update--British Debauchery by Young on Crete Force Officials to React, Not Wisely Respond

According to The Guardian, and following the killing of a young British tourist, 19, on Crete last week, which also resulted in the arrest of upwards of a dozen British youths, the Greek island is considering setting up a segregated nightlife zone for young tourists.

Tyrell Matthews-Burton, a 19-year-old Londoner, was stabbed to death in a brawl outside a bar in the Cretan resort of Malia on July 23 while celebrating his birthday.

To make matters worse, three British women have also been reported raped in recent days.

Young British tourists, often abroad for the first time, and away from parental oversight, form a foundation of predominant foreign visitors to Malia, resulting in unbridled debauchery and public drunkenness.

Matthews-Burton's death has led to support for Malia to consider establishing tourist "ghetto" in a strip outside the town, following increasing complaints from peaceful islanders.

COMMENT: Please review my posting of 7/28 entitled "Greece: Update--Mass Mêlée Prompts Cretans to Reevaluate Riotous Britons," which Malian fathers have underwritten to create a tourist "ghetto" for young adults, which will still result in wholesale debauchery and public drunkenness, not to mention noise and violation of the law in peaceful Crete, which I have visited a number of times in the past.

Strangely, local officials in Malia seem to be planning for a "hands-off" "ghetto" for young adults on the outskirts of town that would permit clubs, bars and quad-bike racecourses to be established in a "closely monitored" enclave.

Unfortunately, local officials fail do not define what "closely monitored"  actually means.

In a related development, the mayors of Zakynthos, Crete, Corfu, Rhodes and Kos are to hold a mini-summit in Athens in October, where the issue of riotous tourists will be discussed. 

Tourism to Greece some time ago surpassed shipping as the country's largest industry with tourism now responsible for 20% of its income.

Rather than discouraging out-of-control young Britons to go elsewhere through the strict enforcement of local laws, including public drunkenness which I proposed in my July 28 posting, Cretan officials, as well as those of the cash-strapped Mainland, seem to have alternatively chosen to "take the money of young, rowdy Britons" rather than lose the revenue to another country. What does that say for the maintenance of legal principles?

In the end, the law-abiding citizens of Crete will be punished as will the elderly Britons who quietly visit Crete year after year without as much as a fuss.

What I find interesting is that on such a controversial issue, why don't Cretans have a public hearing on the issue of debauchery and public drunkenness on the island, considering it affects all citizens?

The sad part of the Malian plan is that in the interest of securing a flood of revenue from abroad, largely by rowdy young Britons, seemingly local police will now be tasked with selectively enforcing the law in the "young adult ghetto" versus the rest of the island. In essence, there will be TWO rules of engagement, not one as in most communities worldwide.

The Malian plan is hardly one that supports rule of law. Rather, it supports "taking the money" at any cost, regardless of the impact it has on social mores. What a pity.