A most-unpatriotic travel campaign

For better or worse, I read most travel-related press releases sent to me. This one was for worse. Straight from a PR firm in Williamsburg, Va., where you’d think people might be a little patriotic, the ad campaign is called “Escape the Election” and encourages Americans to leave the United States during the presidential election period to stay at a West Indies beach resort. 

It reads:  “As the conventions begin and the campaigns heat up, many may want to get away from it all.” Said resort, it continues, “provides a true escape from the election with no TV or Internet access in the rooms, allowing guests to completely unplug.” Why not just go stick your head in the sand?

Now, if these masters of marketing had simply said, “cast your absentee ballot and go,” I would have been fine. But instead, the campaign promotes ignoring one of the most important presidential races our country has ever seen by offering special rates at a beach resort.

And it gets better. Or worse. During elections involving our first-ever black presidential candidate, Madigan Pratt & Associates is urging us to stay with its client Nisbet Plantation Beach Club on Nevis in the West Indies. A plantation, you say? Yes, a former sugar plantation.

That word has such a bad connotation I cannot believe how many developments and resorts still use it — as a draw! Historically, plantations have been farmed by resident laborers, i.e. slaves.

So here’s my advice. If you feel the urge to travel during the election, don’t forget to vote first. And please skip any place that calls itself a plantation, unless you visit one that focuses on history, like our own Stagville Plantation in Durham, NC, to learn how life really was for Americans with dark skin during slavery. (And, yes, we still have a long way to go.)

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4 Responses to “A most-unpatriotic travel campaign”

  1. Karen Says:

    I’ll be in Oaxaca on Nov. 4 – but YES! I’m getting an absentee ballot! (And I don’t think they have any plantations for me to stay on there.) But maybe I can find a place to buy some plantains?

  2. alice Says:

    Go, Diane! Nice article.

  3. Priscilla Says:

    Thanks for your comments on the press release I sent earlier this week regarding the Escape the Election special at Nisbet. We certainly want citizens to vote and are simply offering a getaway to escape the hype surrounding the election. If travel were to take one away during Election Day, we expect that travelers would submit absentee ballots in advance.

  4. karel Says:

    I’m wondering whether ‘non-patriotic” is just a description or does it have a load of qualifying.
    Anyhow from my (limited) view is there in the running election-circus almost no difference to perceive between democracy and dollarcracy. If this is true, I can raise the question what is the differnce between taking a ticket to a vacation-island or taking a ticket to the election-performance.
    But I realise that the political 2-party-system in the USA is not comparable to the 10-party-system in my country.

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