Sunday, November 29, 2009


Dubai has been in the news lately...

It was my plan for us to go to Dubai on our next trip to Ethiopia* (I'm our travel agent and usually decide where we are going). I wanted to stop over for a day or two. It fascinates me. It sounds exotic and crazy and different and surreal. Truthfully, I was more than a little bit excited to see it.

Tommy said "no."
He told me it was built on slavery and the slaves are still trapped there. He doesn't want to support that**.
So, I read articles like this.

Years ago, I remember trying to figure out whether or not it was ok to visit Burma (you know, if we made sure not to eat, stay at, or buy from any government run places, only the mom and pop type shops). We decided not to. If we traveled there, supporting the government of Myanmar seemed unavoidable. Now, I'm not comparing what's happening in Burma to what's happening in Dubai. I'm only questioning where is right for me to travel and why.

What do you think? Since Tommy's not going, I'm pretty sure I'm not either. Since most of us traveling to Ethiopia have limited options for layovers, what do you think?

*Oh, and we haven't started our paperwork yet. I'll let you know when we do. Soon. Hopefully. Soon.

**Please don't think I judge you for one second if you went or will go to Dubai. I have really wanted to go for a few years now. I only judge Star Jones for honeymooning there and I think that's because I just don't like her, Dubai going or not.


jana said...

In my opinion most countries were built on the backs of slaves, including America. To not go and visit a place for that reason I think would be foolish. :)

Amy B. said...

First of all...I love you guys for even thinking along these lines. The question is...Do you go and spend your money there now that you know this? From reading your post, I think your convictions are probably telling you that you can't go in good conscious. That is how I have been with so many things recently. Now that I know the "truth", do I continue to live like I don't the difference or do I stand up for injustice even if it isn't in my favor. Also, Dubai is CURRENTLY being built and supported on slavery...not just in past history. We can't change the past, but we certainly don't want to support that kind of iniquity in the present. I'm with Tommy on this one. That is the reason I watch what kind of clothing I buy and why I avoid certain businesses and why I only buy fair trade coffee. I want to be ever mindful that I am not supporting slave labor in any form or that I change my ways if I find out I am. I think the fact that Dubai is still operating under that kind of and Tommy are making the right decision not to go at this time.

Jocelyn said...

What Amy said:-)

Lindy Young said...

I'm not very informed on Dubai's history, but for whatever it's worth, I have not heard that it is a particularly interesting place. Lots of shopping and otherwise kind of a boring big city.

jen said...

you are such a wonderful and responsible family. really, I appreciate this so much.

Dubai is lavish. I agree with Lindy. And Amy B. and Jocelyn.