UPDATE: The father of Abby Sunderland admitted today that he had a television deal in the works with a production company entitled, “Adventures in Sunderland” about his daredevil children. “I’m broke and I signed a contract to do a reality show.” he confessed to the New York Post. Abby also plans to write a book about her experience now that others have rescued her and paid for it. I see the apple does not fall far from the tree…
So, not only is this family stupid and inept at planning a world voyage, they are financially manipulative and prey on the public at the risk of their own lives and in this case, their children’s lives. We pray the media will walk away from them and take out their desire for publicity and fame, just like the hot air balloon liars last year. That…would be REALITY!
Now, back to the column…
The saga of 16-year old solo sailor Abby Sunderland ended with her rescue in the Indian Ocean. A final decision will be made whether to tow her sailboat back to land or sink it in the ocean. It is too bad they cannot sink the brains of her and her goofy parents in the same ocean.
This was an ill-advised trip complete with rationalizations that any criminal would love.
Parents who are overruled by a teenage daughter who wants to sail around the world in an attempt to be the youngest to every do it, should be examined carefully by a psychiatrist and after that, never allowed to have another child again.
Unfortunately, they are expecting another baby. Gee, I wonder what wish they will grant that new child someday…a solo Kenyan safari alone in the wilderness at the age of seven? Six months alone in Siberia with a canteen and a pup tent? A challenge to live in the same cell with Joran van der Sloot for a year. Hope she’s not a girl.
It was bad enough to read about their familial stupidity and quest for glory when Abby blasted off from Marina Del Rey on January 23. But, now that she almost died at sea, the logic from the father (if you were not rolling your eyes in the first place, wait until you hear THIS!) is enough to convince you someone needs to add some marbles to his circle of sanity. “Sure, the ocean is dangerous but teenagers get into car accidents and die all the time!”
I am glad he is not my lawyer.
His argument comparing his dippy daughter to sail for months around the world in volatile ocean seas, storms, climate conditions replete with pirates, sharks and a total lack of long-term voyaging experience has no relevance to a young person running a red light or veering off into a tree. Who is this parent’s mentor? Lindsay Lohan?
This family is so wacky, they are quoting Jesus and the bible like they actually understand the responsible Christian life. When she was first announced missing at sea, they began praying, “Let the Lord’s will be done.” I am a Christian, too. If they really wanted the Lord’s will to be done, they would have said NO when Abby started begging them to go.
Their lack of responsibility now enables others to pay for the rescue costs. Not them. The Australia Maritime Safety Authority will assume that price. “No, that’s the way the system runs. We would expect people to rescue any Australian yachtsman in these conditions,'’ said Chief Executive, Mick Kinley. I see the maritime associations are just as idiotic as the sailors are here.
I think if parents and their children are glory hounds and make decisions on the level of, “I am three years old, can I play on the freeway and dodge cars? Please? PLEASE!”, two things should now happen. First, make the Sunderlands pay all rescue costs and impose that same consequence on any parents who refuse to understand they are the authority in the family and not the wimps. Secondly, ban all potential sailors who are competing for this solo honor to be at least 21 years of age. If they drown, fine. But, at least they were an adult who is legally qualified to die out there in the most dangerous spot on earth.
I am glad Abby Sunderland is safe. But, she is not a hero. I am saddened the national talk shows gave her and her news hogging parents air time to tell their version of the story. The reality of what has happened should be an embarrassment to them, not a celebration. They are lucky to still have a daughter. Deep down, I think the mother realizes this and this experience may have brought at least one of the parents to their senses. Daddy Sunderland is still off in space on this one. He just doesn’t get it.
I hope Jesus helps him finally understand that stupidity and lack of a spine almost cost him.
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