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Ft. Myers HS band can't march in London parade

by Angeline Booher / April 2, 2006 4:45 AM PDT
FORT MYERS, Florida (AP) -- School officials in southwest Florida said terrorism concerns led them to keep a high school band from marching in a London parade, but now angry British officials are telling travelers that Fort Myers is no safe haven, either.

Local tourism officials fear the dispute could cost Lee County millions in tourism dollars, and even Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has commented, saying, "Perhaps the superintendent is being overly cautious in this regard."

District administrators nixed the trip in early March, citing the threat of terrorism in Europe -- especially the 2005 terrorist bombing of London's city buses and subway system, which killed 52 people.

On Friday, London parade officials released a statement to the News-Press of Fort Myers, warning British travelers about the city's crime and homicide rates, Lee County's record number of traffic deaths in 2005 and that the "entire area is prone to catastrophic hurricanes."


http://www.cnn.com/2006/TRAVEL/04/02/tourism.dispute.ap/index.html

I suspect that those kids worked hard to raise money for the trip. There was no mention in the article about how the parents feel.

One never really knows how one would react when faced with that decision, but I think I would feel London was probably safer than it had been in years due to increased security.

Angeline
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That's absolutely absurd.
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / April 2, 2006 6:44 AM PDT

Have they cancelled all student travel to New York City or Washington DC? Those are both much higher up the terrorist target list, I;d think!

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
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I'm sure lots of trips got cancelled..
by EdH / April 2, 2006 7:39 AM PDT

to NY and DC in the wake of 9/11. Maybe it's an overreaction, but if something DID happen it would be a different story.

Very hard to protect marchers in a parade, and Americans would be a tempting target. Hardly "absurd".

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DC murder capital
by Dragon / April 2, 2006 9:21 AM PDT
DC IS AGAIN 'MURDER CAPITAL', NEW STUDY SHOWS
- District had Highest Big-City Murder Rate in 2002
- DC Murder Rate Soared as Other Cities Saw Decline

Anyway, I think Europe, after the recent attacks, are a lot more sensitive security-wise these days, and are acting accordingly to beef up security.

I think the high school over-reacted. On the other hand, schools are so afraid that something can happen that they don't allow anything. Recent conversations mentioned not even allowing kids to have recess, much less play tag. Kind of reminds me of the PC crowd, gone amok.
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Lots of domestic trips have been cancelled ...
by Evie / April 2, 2006 10:22 AM PDT

... to NYC. Not as sure about DC.

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