Why wasn’t it women and children first?

Shortly after the sinking of the Costa Concordia we started having a low level grumble in the media about the failure to implement a “women and children first” evacuation policy.  Others including Elusive Wapiti and Vox Day have rightly pointed out that it is wholly irrational for our society to expect men to follow cultural norms which have long been invalidated by feminism. As Brendan put it in a different context:

If liberation for women meant liberation from accountability to men, liberation for men meant liberation from responsibility to women.

It turns out that feminists actively derided this policy following the sinking of the Titanic.  As one article from the Daily Mail points out:

…such an attitude provoked sharp responses from early feminists, who believed that ‘women and children first’ infantilised women, and it gave rise to the slogan ‘Votes not Boats’ for the female sex.

Even worse, feminists of the day denied the unbelievable sacrifice of the men who gave their lives so that mostly women (and a much smaller percentage of children) could be saved.  The Daily Mail tells us of the famous feminist of the day wrote:

…the men who perished in the Titanic disaster achieved a mercifully quick death and instant glory whereas their wives were left to grieve and fend for themselves.

There may well be no constant greater than feminist female martyrdom.

As I wrote in the beginning the complaints strike me as fairly muted.  I think those who are criticizing the male passengers at some level understand the absurdity of their position.  Most of these complaints also tend to conflate the failure of a sufficient number of men to volunteer to be the last to enter the lifeboats with the alleged abandonment of the ship by the captain.  The charges against the captain do appear quite serious.  An editorial in USA Today opens with:

You can say one thing about the captain of the cruise ship Costa Concordia: He’s no stickler for traditions. Women and children first? The captain goes down with his ship? They’re not for him. While frightened passengers scrambled to escape his capsizing ship, Francesco Schettino was safe in a lifeboat, resisting orders to get back aboard.

Mark Steyn is even more damning in his piece:

The miserable Captain Schettino, by contrast, is presently under house arrest, charged with manslaughter and abandoning ship. His explanation is that, when the vessel listed suddenly, he fell into a lifeboat and was unable to climb out. Seriously. Could happen to anyone, slippery decks and all that. Next thing you know, he was safe on shore, leaving his passengers all at sea. On the other hand, the audio of him being ordered by Coast Guard officers to return to his ship and refusing to do so is not helpful to this version of events.

Yet the charges against the male passengers on the ship are much more murky.  They seem to all come back to the same assertion that a few men weren’t entirely courteous in making their way to the lifeboats (again from Mark Steyn):

On the Costa Concordia, in the words of a female passenger, “There were big men, crew members, pushing their way past us to get into the lifeboat.”

The fact I see very little attention being given is that “Women and children first” is an incredibly disruptive way to load lifeboats.  When a ship is sinking time is of the essence.  The captain of the Costa Concordia in all likelihood saved incredible numbers of lives by not implementing this foolish policy.  There were 4,200 passengers and crew on the ship (source), and so far we only know of 11 dead and 21 missing (source).  Even if we assume that all currently missing are in fact dead, this still means that 99.24% of the passengers and crew made it out alive.  Given this incredible survival rate alone, the complaints that not enough men chose to give up their seats on lifeboats is downright bizarre.  I doubt those disappointed that more men didn’t die have really considered this.

We know from historical implementations of the policy that it creates a great deal of additional complexity at a time when there is already more than enough stress and confusion.  The Daily Mail describes the famous original  implementation of the policy on HMS Birkenhead:

Some women did not want to go on their own — they had to be torn away from their husbands, carried over to the bulwark and dropped over the ship’s side.

The original Birkenhead drill was effective because the captain and crew were military and there was a way to enforce the order with lethal force.  The idea that a civilian cruise ship crew could even enforce this kind of policy is laughable.  While there are some accounts of crew members firing into the air on the Titanic to restore order, if a significant number of the men on board had chosen to disregard the policy it seems unlikely that the crew could have prevailed.

Additionally, there is going to be enough confusion on a sinking ship.  This call to add additional complexity to the process only makes sense if one is absolutely wedded to a rule which has only rarely been implemented.  Keeping men off of lifeboats only throttles the lifeboat load and launch process.  Put this practice in place on a sinking cruise ship, and you’ve just created over a thousand heart rending farewell scenes smack in the middle of your lifeboat staging areas.  Unless the crew is prepared to forcibly pick up women and throw them physically into lifeboats as they did on HMS Birkenhead you had better hope you have plenty of extra time.  The same problem came up on the Titanic when implementing this policy.  Many lives were needlessly lost in order to achieve the desired sex ratio of survivors on the Titanic.

The only answer given both the realities of feminism and the logistical nightmare of this policy is to acknowledge that this historically short lived practice is something from the past.  This doesn’t mean that no men will ever sacrifice for women, but that men will not be expected to sacrifice for women, especially those women who have no obligation to the men themselves.  Individual men will continue to protect their own, but the idea that men in general have an obligation to women in general is dead.  Another article in the Daily Mail describes a husband on the Costa Concordia giving up his life jacket to save his wife of 40 years:

‘There weren’t enough life jackets. I can’t swim so he gave me his life jacket. ’He shouted “jump, jump, jump”.

‘I froze and couldn’t jump, but he jumped off the ship and shouted upwards “come on, don’t worry”.
‘I jumped off and the last thing I heard him say was that I would be fine.

‘Then I never saw him again.’

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Night time and day time photos licensed as creative commons by Rvongher.

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110 Responses to Why wasn’t it women and children first?

  1. Lily says:

    The captain of the Costa Concordia in all likelihood saved incredible numbers of lives by not implementing this foolish policy.
    I don’t think he implemented any policy from the sounds of things. When any policy came, it was an off duty captain. And if he did indeed jump in a taxi as soon as they made it to land, he ought to be hung, drawn and quartered. The funny thing is he was probably acting (at least pre sinkage) to what Roissy would call alpha.

    I think the high survival rate is partly due to how close they were to the shore. Not far for the boats to go. So close, I’d have tried jumping and swimming too. It’s so sad the old French man didn’t make it. I don’t know what nationality they were, there weren’t many British on the boat. It was from the accounts of one of them (a retired police inspector) that I first saw the comment about men not doing no women and children first (as he had done it). I don’t think there is an official women and children first evacuation on boats anymore, but it’s one thing not having the policy, but it’s another thing big burly men knocking over children in their rush to get to the boats as has been reported. And jumping in the already full lifeboats etc.

    A few things have been bringing out national sterotypes in the last couple of years and this is yet another. This captain has brought shame on Italy, a British captain (of a plane or ship) would never have acted like that.

  2. MarkyMark says:

    As someone else said, votes for boats was the trade they (i.e. women) made. Seems to me they ought to ‘woman up’, suck it up, and DEAL with it…

  3. Lily says:

    Just for the record, I don’t think there is a need for women and children first. And I’d have said the same thing if it was big women (we have these in England in places like Lancashire) knocking over children.

  4. Opus says:

    What has struck me about this tragedy, is that in much the same way as when one boards an aircraft one goes through an evacuation-by-sea drill thus re-enforcing the fantasy of an orderly and safe, sea evacuation, should the plane convenienlty come peacefully to rest in the ocean – when did that ever happen? – the provision of lifeboats reassures that should one hit another inconveneintly placed iceberg that there would be an orderly evacuation avoiding those harrowing scenes of men stoically staying behind on deck (now accompanied by James Newton Howard’s maudlin music); yet as we see from the Concordia, events happened very quickly, such that one half of the life-boats were underwater and thus unusable and (so I read) the winching mechanism for the life-boats on the other side of the ship malfunctioned. The truth is that even if there had been twice as many life-boats as there were passengers and crew this would have been unlikely to save so much as one single life. In short, ‘women and children first’ is, as Dalrock well explains, a recipe for disaster, and has I will suggest, less to do with the evacuation of a sinking ship and more to do with male/female fantasy and fears, which thus undermines the west’s male/female equality policies rather as Dragon Tattoo undermines Swedish provision of total safety for women.

    I rceived a lot of flack the day before yesterday for coming to the defence of a Scapegoat (as I saw it) on another blog and will risk further acrimony by wondering whether the Captain of the Concordia is likewise being unfairly blamed. Were I the owners of The Concordia or for that matter of any other Cruise-Liner I too would want to blame The Captain, for to do otherwise would surely be very damaging for the cruise-ship Industry, when one sees how easily those ships can be wrecked, as the Concordia went down in peaceful conditions and very close to shore. How would she have coped had she encountered a perfect storm, I wonder? Do you fancy a cruise?

  5. YOHAMI says:

    This it makes me think the end of feminism is really coming. The moment men stop putting women first, the moment feminism dies.

    More stuff like this and more divorces like Bryant´s and a full backlash will happen.

  6. First thanks for the mention, Sir Dalrock.

    I’ve been doing some more thinking about this subject, and have two additional thoughts to add.

    First, I noted that the women were identified by their role in society, i.e., mother and grandmother. The men were an invisible anonymous mass, except as faceless callous brutes. Manwomanmyth has a video about how men are invisible, except as criminals and other miscreants. This incident is yet more evidence of that.

    Second, while I have a bit of schadenfreude about the women who complain about not getting their pedestal due after nearly a century of emasculating the male sex, I think we have indeed lost something as a society. The Costa incident is merely a symptom. What does the future portend when the sex that does have the inherent power and gifts to save lives and rescue people…opts not to? Or is slow to engage because it is either afraid to do so or is conditioned not to?

    Also, wrt chivalry being about protecting the weak, great minds think alike. I swear I didn’t lift that from you…

  7. MarkyMark says:

    Votes for boats was the trade they made…

  8. Rmaxd says:

    “Also, wrt chivalry being about protecting the weak, great minds think alike. I swear I didn’t lift that from you…”

    Yea, wholly agree … protecting the weak, decrepit & useless, bit like welfare, except more like survival welfare …

    You could label feminism as survival of the weak welfare

    Marriage is designed to benefit, weak infertile women into old age decrepidness

    Welfare is designed to benefit, weak single mothers

    Affirmative action designed to benefit, uncompetitive women

    Promiscuity, designed to benefit used up single mothers & milfs …

  9. Eric J Schlegel says:

    “The funny thing is he was probably acting (at least pre sinkage) to what Roissy would call alpha.”

    Lily, it is important to remember that the Alpha males have always implemanted and enforced codes of conduct for the rest of the males, that THEY THEMSELVES are exempt from. When push comes to shove, they send the lesser men to their deaths and save themselves. So then they may live to breed another day. So yes, he was doing what was normal. If he had been smart, he would have directed his Beta Enforcers to quietly secure him a safe way off the boat afterwards, as he continued to order the Gamma Drones to stand by and die.

  10. Rum says:

    “Women and children first” in the context of a mass rescue situation means “let your own brother or adult sons perish if necessary in order to save the lives of adult women you have not met.” There is no getting around that part. It is rarely put so baldly because then it would begin to sound a little absurd. Since the notion of w.a.c.f. was originally created as war-time propaganda to inspire a population, it rarely is going to be subjected to the kind of scrutiny that would make it appear absurd.
    The bit about w.a.c.f. was developed in Great Britain during its long life and death struggle with Napolean. It was a way of contrasting the pious, faithful, devoted to hearth and home British way of life worth fighting for versus the FRENCH way of being devious, unfaithful and wholly given over to un-natural lusts.
    A lot of that drifted across to America. However, the rest of the world never was exposed to it.
    A joke went around after Titanic sank. “Next time, I will take an Italian ship.”

  11. Rmaxd says:

    “‘There weren’t enough life jackets. I can’t swim so he gave me his life jacket. ’He shouted “jump, jump, jump”.”

    Also this guy’s an idiot …

    This proves chivalry is idiotic & retarded, if he’d kept the life jacket, he could’ve kept the both of them afloat & safe, instead of throwing the weaker woman the lifejacket & getting himself killed … chivalry

    Doesnt get any more retarded then that …

  12. Dalrock says:

    @Lily

    I don’t think he implemented any policy from the sounds of things. When any policy came, it was an off duty captain.

    From what I’m reading there really does seem to have been a lack of leadership, although there may be more to the story than we have heard so far. Either way, there clearly was a great deal of confusion at the time. If anyone in in authority had tried to implement a women and children first policy it would have multiplied the confusion many fold. This point is lost on those shaming the captain/crew for not implementing the policy and the male passengers for not volunteering to make it a de facto policy. Even if every man on the ship spontaneously volunteered to implement this policy, as I pointed out they would then have created over a thousand highly emotional farewells right in the middle of the lifeboat mustering area. Many women may find the idea of this scene terribly romantic (I’m not saying you), but it would have gotten a lot of people killed who as it was survived. Given how much trouble they had getting the lifeboats launched in time as it was, this would have been an absolute catastrophe.

    I think the high survival rate is partly due to how close they were to the shore. Not far for the boats to go. So close, I’d have tried jumping and swimming too. It’s so sad the old French man didn’t make it.

    I think this may have helped, but we are talking about over 4,000 people on a sinking ship at night in January. This ship may have been different, but most cruises tend to have a disproportionate number of elderly. I don’t know how cold the Medeteranian is in January, but I’m guessing it is too cold for most people to swim very far in the daytime. At night the risks go up a great deal. As badly as it sounds like the process was handled, that 99%+ of the people on board made it off alive is simply amazing.

    I don’t think there is an official women and children first evacuation on boats anymore, but it’s one thing not having the policy, but it’s another thing big burly men knocking over children in their rush to get to the boats as has been reported. And jumping in the already full lifeboats etc.

    Unless you are seeing different accounts than I have, you have taken claims that big men pushed past others who were standing by the lifeboats, and have turned this into “knocking over children”. What we aren’t told is why these people were standing by the lifeboats. It could be they were following the instructions of the crew, but it could also well be that they were hesitating to evacuate. Every account I’ve read of ships sinking there were people who hesitated to evacuate, especially women. If they were standing in the way trying to figure out what they wanted to do, who can blame others for pushing past? We also have to be careful not to extrapolate the claims of a few people to apply to the ship as a whole. One or two men pushing past an old lady milling around the lifeboat staging area could well account for these claims. We simply don’t know.

  13. tweell says:

    It has indeed been interesting how the mainstream article comments have been going – despite the shaming attempts there have been many men commenters pointing out that women, having destroyed chivalry, cannot expect chivalry to save them.

  14. Dalrock says:

    I just looked up the water temperature. This article says it was in the “mid- to upper-50s”. This is cold enough to be very dangerous. Ordinary people won’t function very long in water this cold.

  15. Dalrock says:

    @Rum

    “Women and children first” in the context of a mass rescue situation means “let your own brother or adult sons perish if necessary in order to save the lives of adult women you have not met.” There is no getting around that part. It is rarely put so baldly because then it would begin to sound a little absurd.

    Well put. There is a natural tendency of men to want to protect their own. In the chaos of a sinking ship this can either be harnessed or fought against. There is some malleability to this instinct if one can tune men’s perception of “their own”. Men can be encouraged to expand their definition of their own to a sort of extended tribal view. But this will still be a weaker force when a man is considering saving those who really are his own vs those whom he has no real vested interest in. Part of how a man protects his own is to survive the disaster as well. Women understand this. If you polled only married women traveling with their husbands or mothers traveling with their adult sons on any cruise ship I’m sure you wouldn’t find many advocating women and children first as a policy should something go wrong.

    Feminists and their So Con enforcers have seized on the ability to define a much expanded sense of their own to keep men under the old rules while women operate under new ones. This way women can free themselves from accountability to men without men being freed as Brendan pointed out. It is an attempt to have their cake and eat it too.

  16. Dalrock says:

    @Elusive Wapiti

    Second, while I have a bit of schadenfreude about the women who complain about not getting their pedestal due after nearly a century of emasculating the male sex, I think we have indeed lost something as a society. The Costa incident is merely a symptom. What does the future portend when the sex that does have the inherent power and gifts to save lives and rescue people…opts not to? Or is slow to engage because it is either afraid to do so or is conditioned not to?

    In my post on the Titanic over a year ago I wrote that part of me mourned the loss of this concept. I recall one of the commenters saying I would get over it, and I have to say he is right. What I do mourn is what I suspect what you mourn, which is a society where men and women had more clearly defined roles and expectations. Even then however this practice strikes me as far more romantic than practical. The death toll from the Titanic clearly demonstrates this. Additionally, even in a society with defined sex roles making sacrifices like this mandatory takes away all nobility from the act. For the act to have real meaning in the chivalric sense, it has to be something the man has within his means to elect not to do. The moment you enforce it either by law or by So Con shaming you have destroyed the very graciousness of it.

  17. Senior Manchild says:

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/lifestyle/show-your-manners-to-pregnant-ladies/story-e6frf00i-1226240242646

    @Elusive Wapiti,

    ¨Second, while I have a bit of schadenfreude about the women who complain about not getting their pedestal due after nearly a century of emasculating the male sex, I think we have indeed lost something as a society. The Costa incident is merely a symptom. What does the future portend when the sex that does have the inherent power and gifts to save lives and rescue people…opts not to? Or is slow to engage because it is either afraid to do so or is conditioned not to?¨

    I too have a bit of schadenfreude; after the last 50 or so years of social tinkering, women are finally starting to get the equality that they sought. If there is any sadness to be felt, it should be for the children who have been used as pawns by women. Maybe men are starting to get their head screwed on straight in regards to women, but I hope children to not have to suffer though I expect they will.

    However,

    If we are ever going to get back to some semblance of where we were, the only direction is forward. A further coarsening of the culture until values of old are so scarce that they once again have value.

  18. MarkyMark says:

    Ulysses S. Grant said it best: the best way to repeal a bad law is to STRINGENTLY ENFORCE it! The corollary here is that the best way to get rid of feminism and its foolish notions of equality is to STRINGENTLY ENFORCE equality; jam it down women’s throats till they choke! Then and only then is there a chance that they’ll see the folly of their ways…

  19. Instead of asking why it wasn’t ‘women and children first’ they should be asking themselves why any man needs to put a society that constantly puts them down, treats them like dirt and disposable wallets above their own need to survive?

    I love these situations, not because people die and suffer but simply because one all important truth stares people back in the face. That men and women are not equal. Nothing like life and death to suddenly shock you out of slumber.

  20. deti says:

    This episode points up one of the most difficult things for men to accept about women writ large: The seemingly limitless capacity for women to insist on their own liberation while refusing to acknowledge how that liberation also unmoored men from their responsibilities.

    It is usually done very subtly. It also plays on men’s highly developed senses of fairness, justice, and their ability to organize and prioritize. Having said this, the ruse has worked for a long time. Witness gender laws favoring women and the no fault divorce industry. These might have started to “level the playing field” but have mutated into horrible monsters which serve now only as massive wealth transfer programs from men to women.

    This all seems to stem from a female battle cry of “It’s Not Fair!”
    “It’s not fair that he gets to work and I have to stay home!”
    “If he has sex with 20 girls, he’s a stud. But if I have sex with 20 guys, I’m a slut. It’s not fair!”
    “If I want relationship from my hookup he’s got to give it to me! Otherwise, it’s not fair!”
    “I have a right to sleep with him and never see him again if that’s what I want. Otherwise it’s not fair!”

    But I suspect men are getting wise to this. I would not be surprised if the men pushing past the women might say things like “this is what equality looks like.”

    “You want a nice dinner, but sweetie, you earn more than I do. So you should pay. That’s fair.”
    “My wife is a mom of three. You’re a 22 year old single girl. I’ll save my wife and kids. You save yourself if you can. That’s fair.”

  21. Lavazza says:

    A slightly improved google translation of why so may died when M/S Estonia sank in the Baltic sea in 1994.

    “This emergency message was sent at 00:23. MS Estonia’s bow visor was dislodged by the pressure of the waves and the ferry rapidly started taking in water. Estonia quickly gained a strong list to starboard. People fell off the walls and broke their arms and legs. Everything went so quickly that there were few people who managed to get up to the deck. The ship’s tilt made it very difficult to climb. Only those who had cabins at the top of the ferry managed to get up on deck. The slope rapidly became so great that the people on board had to run with one foot against the wall and the other on the floor. The Finn Vilho Itäranta managed to get up on deck. Everything went so fast that almost no lifeboat could be launched into the water. Vilho said in an interview:

    “I went to the highest point, where the lifeboats were.
    As far as I could see no lifeboats were hauled down, at least not on the side ”

    Total only 137 of the 989 people on board were saved. This was due to several reasons. Few people could put on their life jackets or come up on deck at all. Most of the few lifeboats that were hauled into the water came in the wrong way and many ended up upside down. The water was 13 degrees Celsius and it was cold and stormy. Many people had not had time to put on clothes, but were almost naked in the lifeboats. It only took about 20 minutes from the time people on board had become aware that the ferry was sinking until it was too late for them to save themselves. Many froze to death in the lifeboats because it took so long before they were rescued. The survivors had been in the water between the hours of 00:30 to 00:45. The first helicopter with five survivors landed on the ship Silja Symphony’s deck at 4.10, but several lifeboats were not picked up until later in the morning. Since many lifeboats were half filled with water, it was therefore very difficult to survive. Many survivors who had managed to board a lifeboat instead froze to death in the lifeboat during the night while waiting for rescue.”

    I also found info somewhere that crews hardly ever practice launching life boats with people in them (at least not in bad weather), because it is quite difficult and dangerous operation.

    Were most passengers at Costa Concordia rescued from deck?

  22. Doyourownresearch says:

    Didn’t you know Dalrock?

    There are no feminists on sinking ships!

  23. Anonymous Reader says:

    A cruise ship is not an ocean liner of 100 years ago. It is more of a floating hotel / party boat than a seagoing vessel intended to transport people and cargo from one continent to another. So let’s consider this as a hotel, not a ship. Most of the staff in a hotel are there to serve guests: kitchen staff, waiters / waitresses, busboys, bartenders, room service attendants, cleaning staff for both public spaces and rooms, laundry staff, etc. They come to work, they do their job, they go home. If for some reason hotels had dormitories for staff down in sub-basements, so they could be on call, they’d still be kitchen help, waiters, and so forth.

    If a big Las Vegas hotel caught on fire, how many of the staff would be able to do much of anything to fight the fire? How many would even know where the fire hoses were, how to turn them on, and how to control them? Not very many. Because such events are so rare, I doubt that any hotel gives out any more “training” for fires than they put on the “in case of fire” placard on the door of their rooms next to the rate card. So most of the staff would be as useful, or as useless, as the guests in case of a fire.

    I suggest that modern cruise ships, being floating hotels, have “crews” that consist almost entirely of waiters, waitresses, busboys, kitchen staff, room cleaners and so forth. They are nothing like the crew of a steamship of 100 years ago. None of them have to handle cargo, so they probably won’t know how to operate a power winch. None of them have any training in navigation, or operating small water craft. Since many of the crew members on these floating hotels come from poor countries such as the Philippines, a lot of them probably cannot swim, either. In a crisis, the “crew” are going to be no more useful than the passengers for the most part. Because modern cruise ships don’t go into situations where they might sink, as a rule, I wager the crew gets onlly the most rudimentary training for such an emergency.

    From what I can tell, no one was in charge on board that ship. Early reports discussed “families huddling together” as the ship listed further – that would be “fathers” trying to keep their “women and children” together and away from the falling objects, breaking glass, etc. but of course that doesn’t make for a very good “news” story, so there’s no reason to interview anyone involved. With thousands of passengers and hundreds of crew all trying to get off the ship, it would have been very difficult for the relative handful of officers such ships have to control the situation, either.

    I don’t go on cruises. IF I did, I’d not go on something like this. But were I to be in such a situation, I think the best way to fill out lifeboats would be “Families First!”. Put the mother in the boat, hand children in, put the father in the boat. Mix the retirees in with the families. Stick a couple of crew in. When full, launch. That way you get some reasonably able bodied men into each boat, you don’t waste time splitting families up with all the emotion that involves, you mix the older people in where they will be looked after, and you don’t launch half-empty boats.

    One thing people forget is how long it took Titanic to sink, and how more or less evenly it sank by the bow for a while. That gave time for boat launches. Compare that with the disaster in the Baltic of a few years back, where the bow hatch failed and there were very few minutes for anyone to react. In this case, the rapid list of the ship put half the boats under water rather quickly and made launching the others much more difficult at the same time. Assuming that in any ship sinking there will be lots of time to launch boats, while people re-enact scenes from Hollywood movies is not reasonable.

    It wasn’t “women and children first” for a lot of reasons. But as usual, far too many women – from granny ladies to female journalists to commentators to bloggers – just naturally have to Blame It All On Men. Anytime something bad happens, It’s All Men’s Fault. Count on it.

  24. Rum says:

    The hard mf-ing truth about the dynamics of large ship sinkings on the open sea is that lifeboats are rarely if ever effectively deployed to save many lives. Ships boats were in the old days just for transporting people to shore and back or to another ship. When large ships sink in isolated conditions there have been few if any cases where life boats saved more than a third of the souls on board. The circumstances add up in such ways that it does not work it practice. The Titanic disaster was a teaser because it was theoretically possible, given the weirdly calm weather and the time available that lots more could have been saved. Remember the Lusitania? They had life boats every where. All those ships torpedoed in both W. Wars? Same thing. You know how many survived on the open ocean even IF they got into a lifeboat? Very few. There was not enough time, things tilted, things were damaged, exposure to the weather was deadly.
    Those oxygen face mask on airliners that will deploy in the event of sudden cabin depressurization at 35,000 ft. Just like the floating seat cushions you are told to use ” in the event of a water landing” at 200 mph into the ocean swell normally seen in the N. Atlantic.
    As R. Kipling wrote, sometimes there is nothing for it but to “Go to your God like a soldier.”

  25. CL says:

    There are no feminists on sinking ships!

    Foxhole feminists?

  26. TheMan says:

    Five stars, Dalrock!

    Women are EQUAL…except when they aren’t. Feminists are hypocrites.

    Well, not exactly, I just thought: I’m sure that some feminists–whose ideology is always “blame the man”–WANT the man to die! (I know that’s wicked)

    Their complaint, basically, IS that more men didn’t die!

  27. Lavazza says:

    AR: “But were I to be in such a situation, I think the best way to fill out lifeboats would be “Families First!”. Put the mother in the boat, hand children in, put the father in the boat. Mix the retirees in with the families. Stick a couple of crew in. When full, launch. That way you get some reasonably able bodied men into each boat, you don’t waste time splitting families up with all the emotion that involves, you mix the older people in where they will be looked after, and you don’t launch half-empty boats.”

    Seems like the quickest and most efficient way.

  28. Sweet As says:

    The historical feminist response to the titanic is interesting.

    I might consider it in this heirarchy:

    children
    their mothers
    their fathers
    parents of small children who are not on the boat, but were left at home
    married and single men and women of any age, whose children are adults if they have children.

    To me, this makes the most sense, because we are looking at who is most vulnerable and what their needs are, and then acting in accordance with that out of grace and dignity.

    I always assumed that this would be a matter of grace and dignity.

    For example, when I would fly overseas when married but childless, I would make it my personal mission to make sure that any woman or man with a child was comfortable and had their needs met, and then of course read the safety/evacuation instructions and know that I would do my best to make sure that those families got off the plane first.

    I do not think that my childless self was more valuable than that child’s father — imo, that family was more important than me. So, they would get my seat. This would not be “women and children” first, but “families first.” And from there, if there is still space, then away we go with the rest of us.

    I think this is a responsibility we have to “each other” and mostly to the children in our world (in so far as we can have the power to make their lives good) to take care of the most vulnerable and make sure — to the best of our ability — that they are safe.

    Now, my first priority is my son. I would get my son off a sinking ship, and if there was no room for me or my husband, I would have to get him off that ship. After that, I would go — this has already been agreed upon by my husband and I before our son was born. And if possible, I would not ‘abandon’ my husband to the ship and the policy. I would do my best to ensure that we stayed together as a family.

    But, I think there are probably many selfish men and women in this world who think that they are more important than another’s child’s wellbeing.

  29. YOHAMI says:

    Lavazza,

    Right, but put the mother on the boat first right? then the children. Where did I hear that before?

  30. Purple Tortoise says:

    The fundamental reason for “women and children first” is that it is (or used to be) an investment in the future. Without children, society comes to an end, and without women bearing children, society comes to an end. Things are different today because a large number of women no longer see childbearing and childrearing as their primary role in life. Men are expendable, but childless-by-choice women are even more expendable.

  31. jlw says:

    I’d step on the heads of non-allied men and all women and children to get to the lifeboats. My life is all I have and my mantra is: “Save yourself, by yourself; don’t rely on no one else!” This is the 21st century and anybody who tries to impose a “women and children first” policy on me gets a carving knife from the Neptune Lounge hilt deep in the stomach.

  32. TheMan says:

    Also, it has to do with the fact that some feminists will never be placated and will always have some gripe about men.

    “Women and children first”–whatever the feminists were quoted as saying in 1912
    No “women and children first”–“Where’s the chivalry?!”

  33. Dalrock says:

    @Sweet As

    I might consider it in this heirarchy:

    children
    their mothers
    their fathers
    parents of small children who are not on the boat, but were left at home
    married and single men and women of any age, whose children are adults if they have children.

    To me, this makes the most sense, because we are looking at who is most vulnerable and what their needs are, and then acting in accordance with that out of grace and dignity.

    The more complex you make it the fewer people you will get into the lifeboats before the ship sinks.

    How do you enforce this policy? Do you arm the stewards and waiters for this sort of eventuality? Do you expect them to shoot people who elect to board the lifeboats “out of order”? Might that not add to the panic? If you don’t enforce the order, the whole process breaks down. Men who are following the order will end up in fights with the men who don’t follow the order. Again, more chaos. And how do you know who is really married, has small children at home, etc?

    While AR’s proposal makes some sense, I would argue that even that is too complex. The best process is to follow the KISS principle; Take them as they come. Someone isn’t sure they want to get in the boat and would like to ponder their choice? No problem, you folks over there step right up and get in the lifeboat. The ditherers will find they don’t want to dither if they can’t hold everyone else up. The whole “order of who you save” question assumes there aren’t enough seats. When creating policy, this is what needs to be considered. One article I read said that these ships need to have enough lifeboats to hold all passengers and crew plus an additional 25% of the inflatable type. Getting people onto the boats and off the ship needs to be done quickly and as simply as possible.

  34. Rum says:

    Sweet as
    You realize of course that your ideas are in conflict with “women and children first” as it was originally put forth. On the Titanic, old women were put on boats while fathers of families were told to stand aside and await their death by drowning.
    Why do so many want to sugar coat this?
    When it was introduced, w.a.c.f. was code for, “The ideology of the state is of more importance than your own blood kin. Be willing to sacrifice them for the state. Even your brother or your son should be of less value to you than the abstraction of WOMAN,”
    Nazi propaganda worked exactly the same way except that “women” just meant German women, not just femaleness in the abstract.

  35. Prof. Woland says:

    There is no question that feminism is rotten to the core and all it would take is a good shove to knock it over. The only question is whether men will ever get their collective shit together and do it. You cannot beat something with nothing.

  36. Anonymous Reader says:

    Yohami
    Right, but put the mother on the boat first right? then the children. Where did I hear that before?

    I’m writing that out of practicality. Stick the mother into the boat so that the child won’t balk, then put the father on to calm them both down. It’s in the interest of efficiency, not sentiment.

  37. Joshua says:

    I wonder if in future situations where a WACF order is given, what would be the litigious ramifications of such an order? Could surviving men sue? What about the estate of dead men? I think this is the thing no one is talking about.

  38. Doug1 says:

    Unlike the Titanic, this wasn’t a situation where there weren’t enough seats in lifeboats, or enough time to evacuate everyone. It pretty self evidently wasn’t, given how close they were to shore and the fact that the boat was resting on the bottom, so wasn’t going to sink completely.

    The crew as well as of course the captain seem to have mostly behaved abominably. That casts a very bad light on the Italian operating company. I’m sure they’re gonna hear about that from the American parent company. Only a few seemed to have helped the passengers, as was their job and duty under maritime law. Any who can’t show that they did assist should be fired summarily.

    Under these fairly benign circumstances, I think the able bodied men should have helped the elderly and infirm, of which there are usually quite a few on cruises, to get to the high part of the ship, and get into what lifeboats and rescuing boats there were. I would have if traveling with a male friend or alone. If with a wife and kid, they’d be my priorities.

    The trick was not to get trapped on the low side as it was slowly keeling over, so as not to drown in the parts of the boat that were under water, unable to open your cabin door against all the water weight, etc. That seems like it should have been pretty obvious to me. The boat was quite slowly keeling over more and more, so there was time to think that through. Plenty.

    I’d want to know what temperature the water was though. Jumping in without a life jacket might be pretty risky if it was cold enough.

    BTW, it seems rather strange to me that they can get a full big cruise ship worth of passengers in the northern Mediterranean in January. May I could understand, but January?

  39. Doug1 says:

    Anonymous Reader–

    In a situation where there’s lots of time but not enough room in lifeboats (like the titanic), the elderly and retired should be the last to go, and in fact not go. They’ve lived their lives, they don’t have a lot of life ahead of them if they survive, and they don’t have dependents. Their contributions both to their families and to society are done.

    A young father should definitely not be socially pressured into giving up a place for an old granny, just because she’s a female.

  40. Anonymous Reader says:

    Dalrock, you have a good point. So I’ll modify my plan: FCFS, but families are to be kept together as much as possible, and each boat has to have some number of able bodied men on board.

    Doug1
    I would not really be interested in picking and choosing who gets to go onto a lifeboat beyond what I wrote above. So if mummy, daddy, princess and granny all show up, they should get on the boat. Don’t hold up the line. Period. Dithering around arguing with people over whether granny has lived a long enough life or not is a waste of time. Stick them into a ship’s boat, put some crew on board, and launch. I would not waste time on pressuring anyone to go or stay, frankly, just to stay out of the way and don’t crowd the launch zone.

    And this is for the powered boats, mind you, there are unpowered survival craft on some vessels that look like big, orange pancakes. They contain survival gear, but no motive power. Just fill them up, keep families intact, and get on with it. Read that Baltic ferry disaster and game in your head what to do. Bear in mind some events are not survivable: the engine crew on the Edmund Fitzgerald probably didn’t realize they were sinking until the ship was 50 or more feet under water, it was likely that fast.

  41. Opus says:

    I am put in mind of a novel from the early twentieth century, concerning fate of the the S.S. Patna; where a young officer, Jim, [British, I regret to say Lily, but then what do you expect from a Polish author] abandoned ship, leaving the Muslim passengers to their fate, and spent the rest of his life making up for his cowardice, eventually gaining the honorific ‘Tuan Jim’ or ‘Lord Jim’.

  42. ybm says:

    @The Man
    “Well, not exactly, I just thought: I’m sure that some feminists–whose ideology is always “blame the man”–WANT the man to die! (I know that’s wicked)”

    Saw this quote. had to comment.

    You are being too hard on feminists (yes I am actually typing this) and not hard enough on women.

    Wanting men to die is predicated on an emotional response existing in women regarding a man as a conscious being, it does not. A man is a device to women, its status, protection and resources exist only to serve woman, if the device is broken in the process, that is regrettable as it means a loss of the above three contributions given by the device temporarily.
    If a woman desires obsolescence for a specific man-tool or groups of man-tools, it is only because they do not offer any of the above (80% of men at minimum). In an ideal woman-society the resources and status would be plundered and the device would be used for protection until it is broken and another is found. This is not feminist in any way, they at least are conscious of this, this is the base core of the female sex.

  43. Anonymous says:

    But the captain of the Costa Concordia, was an ideal “Alpha” douchbag for the ladies today… mullet (in uniform), snuck the babe he was trying to butter-up aboard, passed too close to the island for the horn-blowing in order to impress her, ordered dinner after hitting the rocks, bailed out to save his skin when the boat started to sink. Duty and responsibility are for Beta losers, you know.

  44. Pingback: Women and Children First? | Air & Space

  45. Legion says:

    Sweet As says:
    January 21, 2012 at 2:04 pm
    “But, I think there are probably many selfish men and women in this world who think that they are more important than another’s child’s wellbeing.”

    I am not an ageist. I know my life is more valuable to me than the life of any other person, except those whom I choose, no matter their age. Children are to be cared for by their parents or guardian. I have no authority over them and therefore no responsibilty to them.

    If society wants me to live by the old rules, it must straighten itself out first. Good luck with that one.

  46. Anon says:

    Individual men will continue to protect their own, but the idea that men in general have an obligation to women in general is dead.

    I am a married man with children. I guarantee you that if I’m in an emergency situation and my wife and children are NOT present, I can assure you that I am NOT going to do anything heroic or self-sacrificing. I am going to be the FIRST one out the emergency exit door or into the lifeboat, and woe betide anyone who gets in my way. My first obligation is to my own wife and kids, and that means I have to preserve myself for them. Good luck to everyone else!

  47. TFH says:

    While I will certainly work hard to save children (of all races, btw), I will NOT allow an adult woman who is not close to me to have preference over me. I am a 6’3″, 208 pound man, and will use fists, elbows, and carkeys to make sure I can commander the space ahead of a weaker adult (which would be a woman).

    I am SOOO glad that a tragedy like this has tested whether feminism is truly still in force, and am glad to see the number of men pushing back on the demand that ‘society requires YOU to be expendable’.

    Also, older women are no longer even reproductively viable, so those using the ‘sperm is cheap, eggs are expensive’ notion that 11th rate intellects like Hermes and Thursday used to use are effectively saying that women over 40 should be the lowest ranked of all, as they have the least reproductive viability, even less than men aged 60.

    A tragedy like this is the true test of whether feminists can have it both ways.

    Secondly, this isn’t 1912. Aren’t there inexpensive inflatable rafts that can fit into a small space in your suitcase? Isn’t is prudent to bring one with you on a cruise, as a backup in case the ship does not have enough? Or do only men anticipate cause and effect to this degree?

  48. TFH says:

    Anon,

    My first obligation is to my own wife and kids, and that means I have to preserve myself for them.

    You have just summarized how the costs of single motherhood can catch up with an ‘empowered single mom’ when she least expects it.

  49. TFH says:

    Prof. Woland

    The only question is whether men will ever get their collective shit together and do it. You cannot beat something with nothing.

    That is true, and I routinely slam MRAs for not doing any real activism (with Paul Elam as a notable exception).

    That said, I asked you to do something, and you have not yet indicated that you might be willing :

    Write up a ‘how-to’ guide for American/British/Canadian men seeking to marry a Russian woman. Write up all details you can think of, and make it as practical of a process guide as you can.

    If it helps even one man, you have done your part. For even men who don’t do it, knowing that the option realistically exists is itself powerful. The sheer apeshit hate that fat feminists will spew upon this will also be worth it.

    This is definitely worth a couple hours of your time. It will have a disproportionate, asymmetrical impact on the protectionism that Western Feminists are seeking to enforce on a low-quality product.

    Write it up and post it at The Spearhead or In Mala Fide or wherever.

    But do it. Just do this ONE thing.

  50. TFH says:

    Dalrock,

    The more complex you make it the fewer people you will get into the lifeboats before the ship sinks. How do you enforce this policy? Do you arm the stewards and waiters for this sort of eventuality? Do you expect them to shoot people who elect to board the lifeboats “out of order”? Might that not add to the panic? If you don’t enforce the order, the whole process breaks down. Men who are following the order will end up in fights with the men who don’t follow the order. Again, more chaos. And how do you know who is really married, has small children at home, etc?

    Gee, Dalrock’s response to a female might just lead one to think that women don’t grasp cause and effect very well.

    You have just demonstrated why a society where women are able to vote inexorably creates a huge, intrusive, convoluted government with massive contradictions and legislative red tape.

  51. TFH says:

    Even Sun-Tzu said, 2500 years ago :

    “Be a winner, not a hero”

    Be the person who slips out of a situation where the hero ends up dying, and live to prosper, strategize, and fight another day.

  52. AmStrat says:

    Gee, when I start getting tired of reading, I skim the comments to see if TFH said anything. Having 5 posts at the (current) end is just a big bonus!

  53. TFH says:

    Note to self :

    The next time I go on a cruise (admittedly, this could be many years away), pack these things :

    Inflatable life raft.
    Two sets of brass knuckles.
    Face covering helmet and crotch guard.

    Yeah, I am certainly getting off alive.

    Oh, and one more thing :

    Flyers to post around the ship (this time, not in men’s rooms) :

    Children first, but every adult for themselves as equals. Feminism taught me this.

    Heh heh heh heh

  54. MarkyMark says:

    Guys,

    It has been cited elsewhere (I believe the Daily Mail article on the Costa Concordia) that WACF is NOT stipulated in international law. Standard protocol on a cruise ship is for everyone to go to their muster station in the event of an emergency. Muster location is posted in each cabin on the cruise ship. IOW, you figure out your muster point; go to it in an emergency; then those present board the lifeboats. That’s the KISS principle in action.

    MarkyMark

  55. Anacaona says:

    The “families first” sounds good in theory and practicality but like said before in the middle of an emergency determining who is more important to survive will steal precious minutes. No to mention that you can’t never know for sure, people could grab the nearest single being hold behind and yell we are a couple to get tucked in, or I”m pregnant. No to mention that feminists had done their best to destroy families and be “childfree” so anyone discussing this policy can and will get sued and we know that nothing makes people do stuff than the fear of getting sued. First come first serve sounds the best solution, although I’m really cruel, maybe children and skinny ones first could be a better option in the practical sense, YMMV.

  56. map says:

    Can you bring a gun on a cruise ship?

  57. Anonymous Reader says:

    TFH
    Inflatable life raft.

    Should be interesting. I doubt any airlines will allow a self-inflating one on board, and non-self-inflating is hardly worth the trouble. Why not just make sure of where the ship’s floatation devices are/

    Two sets of brass knuckles.

    Be sure to check the legal status of those in all the places you travel. Some US cities, such as New York, will put you in jail for possession of such things.

    Face covering helmet and crotch guard.

    Your luggage is going to be quite bulky.

    map
    Can you bring a gun on a cruise ship?

    As a rule they don’t like you to do that. In a lot of parts of the world, you could wind up in jail.

  58. Jennifer says:

    I’d say the simple method of herding people together as quickly as possible is the best way (the crew on Titanic was especially noble, choosing to die for women & kids). I’d never expect a man to take my place in death, but I do expect people in general to let the weaker (esp. children and visibly pregnant women) to go before them. Even age trumps gender; in one particularly majorly patriarchal family, the youngest boy at 13 said he was prepared to die for women. If we were on a ship together, my response would be “I don’t think so, kid. You’re a child and I’m an adult, so you get on that boat.”

  59. Davout says:

    The Birkenhead theory according to a quote from Kipling’s poem quoted in the Steyn article is that women should be saved because they are not ‘liars and thieves’ like men i.e. because women are morally superior to men. This is the sort of unsubstantiated opinion that has long since held sway in any sort of legal or judicial battle pitting men against women.
    What the Costa Concordia case demonstrates is that men now know that women are just as prone to lying and thievery (re: affirmative action and paternity fraud etc.) as they are and the moral differential between the two has disappeared for all practical purposes.

  60. Johnycomelately says:

    I witnessed a serious car accident recently and consciously went to attend to the safety of the male driver first, after assuring his safety I went to attend to the female driver.

  61. Mark says:

    People these days are wired to panic more easily. Orderly exits were fine back in the days of stiff upper lips, but these days if a balloon pops in public everyone thinks the terrorists are about to kill them.

    Fortunately, I’ve not had to abandon a sinking ship, though I have been on sailboats in storms and a cruiseboat in the Mediterranean. And I’ve also been on the top floor of a hotel when it caught fire and we had to evacuate. Speaking of evacuation, when the alarm went off I was in the bathroom, evacuating my bowels, naked and about to finish up and hop in the shower. I barely heard the fire alarm and at first, because of the bathroom fan, and thought it might have been someone’s alarm clock. Then a screaming woman galloped past my door. “Hmm”, I thought, “Maybe she’s really late for something”.

    Anyway, I jogged down the stairwells and made it out fine, though barefooted and having put my shirt on as I went. But my point is that when faced with possible death, people panic like cats trapped in a box with a vacuum cleaner. The only way to avoid that panic reaction that destroys all reason and order is to train like crazy for it, or have people in charge who have trained. Same goes for facing violence. Unless you train, you’re extremely likely to freeze or make lousy decisions. You still might, anyway. Without training, all the well-meaning ideals or finger-pointing in the world won’t make an inch of difference.

  62. Nara says:

    TFH, how do you know that you’ll be able to grab your raft, brass knuckles & crotch guard before the ship sinks? The Estonian cruise liner seemed to have gone down in minutes. Seemed like most people were S.O.L. and unable to leave their immediate surroundings much less rifle through luggage and get off the ship before it goes down.

    Perhaps the sinking of the Costa Concordia is the only incident in recent memory where we can actually CREDIT feminism with doing some good for mankind ! Over 99% of the passengers survived vs. the much lower rate for other sunk ships. Sounds good to me.

  63. Sweet As says:

    For me, it’s really reflected in Jennifer’s statement.

    It’s not about the external policy of the ship. I would assume that the duty of the captain and crew is to get everyone off safely, and I assume that provisions are made for this to occur — even though it may not always happen (due to circumstance).

    From there, I believe it is up to individual citizens to do their best to be aware of the people around them, and make the best possible provisions for them. This is why I gave the airline example. The air plane is equipped to handle a rescue of all passengers — with various life preserving devices and measures in place — regardless of age, sex, or station. The main thing is that you have to survive the damage first, and once through that, move to the evacuation points and get off as quickly, calmly, and organized as possible.

    If i see that a woman is with an infant, I know that the crew has already realized this, and likely stations the appropriate devices for the infant near the family (typically, the infant flotation devices are placed near those parents in some capacity, as I’ve seen many airlines do this when I take international flights).

    If i survive the initial damage and crash, and I see that the mother is struggling with the device (and I have no other obligations), i consider it most appropriate to aid her with the device and help to get her and her child to safety.

    This is not because of any “heirarchical command.” The only issue would be IF whatever I would be doing would be getting in the way of CREW helping her and as such would ‘stand down’ and of course, follow crew instruction.

    I assume that most people are decent, and would likely do the same. Not to be a hero, but just to act with a certain measure of grace and dignity under the most trying situations.

  64. Legion says:

    Sweet As says:
    January 22, 2012 at 1:18 am
    “Not to be a hero, but just to act with a certain measure of grace and dignity under the most trying situations.”

    I feel shamed. Not really. I remembered I’m the sex that is considered a pedophile when near children.

  65. Will says:

    I used to have a friend years ago who worked on a cross channel ferry in england after the herald of free enterprise RORO ferry capsized and sank rapidly, killing many. He told me that there was a consensus among the ships crew that if the ship started to sink, that the crew would save themselves and leave the passengers to their fate.

    I think in a SHTF scenario, where the ship is sinking fast and its clear that if you don’t get into a lifeboat you will die, it will be a case of every [able bodied] man for themselves. People will just do what they need to survive. I think the days of WACF or just women first, in this era of feminism, “equalitee”, AA, misandry, hypergamy, carosel-riding, GAME, FWB, fuck-buddys, abortion, porn, divorce-theft, single-motherhood, child-support, DV accusations, restraining orders, false rape accusations, shaming language, “peter pan” accusations, MAN UP! demands – are long gone.,

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  67. Opus says:

    @Will

    I am not sure that Americans will be familiar with RORO ferries – so; they are cross-channel ferries, running from ports in Southern England to ports in Northern Europe, though frequently large , say 20,000 tonnes. RORO stands for Roll-on Roll-off, meaning that the cars drive on at one end and off at the other. This means that the front and rear of the ship have a draw-bridge, which is let down. The Herald of Free Enterrprise, sank because the draw-bridge had been left down, and this would be done to empty the exhaust-fumes from the cars that had just been taken on board. Before the tragedy, I can recall travelling on one from Portsmouth to Le Havre or maybe Cherbourg and observing to my surprise that the draw-bridge was down as we crossed the English Channel. I thought then that it seemed dangerous, but the sea was calm. It did not occur to me to realise that in the event of disaster I would be left to my briny fate.

  68. Will says:

    @Opus

    I expect modern car ferries are much safer today becuase of the design changes that became mandatory for all european ferries after the herald of free enterprise disaster and others. However, the herald of free enterprise ferry capsized within a couple of minutes of water entering the car deck. My friend at the time was working on a ferry that had the same design flaws as the herald of free enterprise. He and the other crew on his ship were acutely aware that once water entered the car deck that they would only have a few minutes before the ship capsized. They were dammned sure that they weren’t going to spend those vital few minutes trying to save passengers.

  69. Lavazza says:

    “Right, but put the mother on the boat first right? then the children. Where did I hear that before?”

    LOL! Whatever is most efficient. Come to think of it, normally the person who knows about boats board the boat first and then help people who are less used to boats on board.

  70. Lavazza says:

    Opus: Well, you certainly don’t have to explain it to a Swede, like me.

    http://wikitravel.org/en/Baltic_Sea_ferries

  71. stonelifter says:

    I’m a big man. I knock kids over when they are running wild doing all their wonderful kid things when I’m not paying attention.

    #1) I wonder how many men really did push/ knock women and kids out of the way & 2) if men did, did they do it in a panic to save their own ass or was it the natural result of confusion and two bodies trying to occupy the same space? Or did they do it to get their loved ones on life boats?

  72. UK Fred says:

    The one thing that seems to have been omitted from this report is that the crew members who actually did help the passengers were not the European officers but the eastern (Filipino, Malaysian and Indonesian). I am totally infavour of the views expressed by most of the contributors but I think that the point that has not been raised is that it is part of the crew’s duties, and especially the officers duties, to ensure the safety of the passengers before their own in the event of an emergency.

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  74. greyghost says:

    @deti
    “My wife is a mom of three. You’re a 22 year old single girl. I’ll save my wife and kids. You save yourself if you can. That’s fair.”
    That is a no shitter there. Mrs. greyghost is a mother of three and no matter what she is the only woman I give damn about You baby mommas and cock carousel riders need to keep the phone number of the last guy that enjoyed that pussy because this man only conserns himself with his wife and kids. I’ll help your kids if you are dead. (I thought that was a nice gesture)
    @Rmaxd
    Dieing for your wife is about as bad as dieing for some woman because she is a woman. The man should have put on the life jacket and held his wfe saving them both. She had no thought of or ability to hold on to her husband while she is wearing the jacket.As Dalrock stated it looks romantic but is in the big picture not good way to save lives. Even wives need to understand that a man or husband will work with her but not for her not now days.

  75. Dalrock says:

    @Anonymous Reader

    Dalrock, you have a good point. So I’ll modify my plan: FCFS, but families are to be kept together as much as possible, and each boat has to have some number of able bodied men on board.

    I think this makes general sense, so long as it isn’t interpreted by the crew or the passengers that anyone has a right to board all as one family. The primary objective needs to be to stuff warm bodies into the lifeboats and safely launch them as quickly as possible, without loading past their capacity. From what I recall of the lifeboat drill we did when my wife and I took a nearly identical cruise* a few years ago they put a crew member in each boat to pilot it. I’m not sure about the able bodied rule, simply because of the high number of elderly who typically make up the passengers. But I would think a sharp crewman could spot such men perhaps a bit further back and call them forward in small numbers while loading the boats. The key thing to avoid would be telling people at the front to wait while loading very many other people. There isn’t room in the staging area to keep people in a holding pattern.

    Your points on the differences between modern cruise ships and ocean liners of the past are excellent. Even so, from some accounts the waiters and stewards seem to have been the ones who stuck around and assisted while the professional seamen abdicated their responsibilities. It is hard to know what really is true vs urban legend at this point though.

    One question I still don’t have the answer to is how did the bulk of the passengers exit the ship. I can’t imagine several thousand people (many of them elderly) surviving the jump and swim in mid 50s water at night (even being quite close to shore) without a much higher death rate. I also can’t imagine that they plucked several thousand people off of the deck of the ship after it listed, especially without us hearing about how this amazing feat was managed. For all of the problems they appeared to have had getting the life boats off in time, it strikes me that the unspoken fact must be that they successfully filled and launched the vast majority of the lifeboats.

    *We were on a ship from the parent company Carnival, but aside from the unexplained detour into the rocks took probably the very same route along the Italian coast. We often saw the Costa ships taking the same route as us. At the time we didn’t know they were owned by the same company. Our cruise was in early November so the water would have been warmer, and of course I had my flashlight handy.

  76. greyghost says:

    @UK Fred
    By coincidence guess where men are adviced to go find wives, the same countries you just named. Makes you say hmmm. The guys the left the bitches to their own girl power are from countries (western) rife with misandry enforced equality.

  77. Dalrock says:

    @greyghost & Rmaxd

    I don’t question the decision of the man who gave his wife the life jacket. Given the obvious danger of jumping off the ship into cold water at night, I have to assume he felt that this was urgently needed for their survival. My assumption is that he understood that she would never jump without having the life jacket on, and/or that she would never survive the jump without one. He did what he needed to do to lead her to safety; had he not jumped first, it is pretty clear that she wouldn’t have done so. Had he managed to reconnect with her once both were in the water he could have swam her to shore while benefiting from the flotation of the life jacket. Who knows what actually went wrong. People tend to underestimate how quickly cold water will sap your strength. It doesn’t have to be near freezing to do this either. It is also much harder to see your way once at the water level. A path which is obvious from 50 feet up could be invisible at water level. Plunging into the water at night is notoriously disorienting. He also might have gotten tangled up in some floating debris, a seeming real risk at night at a scene like that.

  78. Rmaxd says:

    @Sweetas

    Why don’t YOU have some dignity & grace & put the STRONG first, instead of you the weak first, so the strong can do what they do best, protecting the weak

    Why are women like you always for putting the weak first, when the strong are designed to protect the weak, as a nature …

    It should be the strongest first to ensure the safety of the weak

    How are the weak going to survive if the weak go first?

    Where is the logic in letting the weak go first?

    What is the point in giving preference to the weak, who can’t fend for themselves, or the people around them

    By letting the strong go first, they ensure the safety of the first

    How is a weak person able to take advantage of him going first, if he isn’t able to enable the weak around him in need?

    Sweetas like most women, you’re empathy for the weak is a liability, it is only by ensuring the safety of the strongest, can you ensure the safety of the weak

    In your lack typical lack of long term consequences, you as a woman, as usual fail to see the irrational & stupidity in putting women & children first

    Ensuring the safety of the weak, only gets the weak killed

    There is a reason why kindness, empathy & blindly caring for people is considered a weakness in your culture … they get people killed

    Ensure the safety of the strong, & you save everybody, ensure the safety of the weak & you ensure the safety of nobody

    It’s typical, & telling Sweetas hates the strong as much as she does, as she herself isn’t considered strong

    Sweetas your empathy for the weak is a liability, in a competitive hazardous environment, empathy has no place

    Like a typical woman, you can’t help but put yourself first, as you are obviously one of the weak

    Its her own fault if she’s a single mother, without a chaperone

    No man has a duty to protect an unproductive mother

    Irrespective of the condition

  79. MarkyMark says:

    Rmaxd,

    Didn’t you get the memo? Women can do anything a man can do, and do it better-grrl power! If that’s true, then women can sacrifice THEMSELVES better than men can, hehehe…

    MarkyMark

  80. greyghost says:

    Dalrock I see your point. You are giving a more general curcumstancial view than a hard this is what should be done view which makes more over all sense. The over all point i was making and maybe Rmaxed is that there is not and should not be a base line approach that entails a male sacrifice for social reasons. BTW 50 to 60 degree water will take your breath away and to get 99 plus percent of those people (a lot of elderly and kids) off of that ship alive in that water at night is pretty good.

    [D: Agreed.]

  81. Rmaxd says:

    Take off your cultural blinkers sweetas & smell the taste of reality, instead of social & cultural entitled indoctrination

    In nature it is the strong who are entitled to survival, only the strong have the ability to allow the weak to survive

    Your empathy & kindness is limited to social mores, nothing more, in the real world it is the weak who allow the weak to die, it is the strong who are the protectors

    Put the strong first, not your social brainwashing immoral indoctrination first

    Stop your inane pedestalisation of the weak, it is the strong men, women should give up their lifeboats for

    If you want your children to live, but even in a disaster women like yourself insist on batting for team woman

    Women should as ALWAYS give up their lifeboats for strong men, how the hell else are your children going to survive?

    Your boobs as floatation devices, as you drown with no strong male to rescue you?

    Give men the honour & respect they deserve, the weak are simply anonymous without the strong to save them

  82. Rmaxd says:

    @Markymark

    LOL exactly, women have to have faith in a mans strength, invest in a mans strength & he’ll have the strength to invest in your strengths

    Invest in a womans weaknesses & there is no strength to invest for any reason …

    Respect a mans strength & you get strength back, respect weakness & you get nothing for your troubles …

    Might will always make right …

  83. Rmaxd says:

    @Dalrock

    Greyghost pre-empted your rationalisation, if the man kept the lifejacket & jumped together, their collective bodyheat, plus the mans ability to keep them both afloat would’ve greatly increased they’re ability to survive …

  84. Lily says:

    The elderly French man had been helping other passengers. He gave his wife the one life jacket left as she could not swim and he could. That makes more sense. I’m not sure if he was supposed to be following close behind or was planning on staying on board to help more and then jump later. Either way he’d have got tired at his age and the water was cold. I don’t know what the water levels were either*. The woman drifted quite a way, not to the island.

    *The young female British dancer who was helping other passengers said her plan was to help as much as possible then jump when the water was higher. She and the young British male dancers all made it by swimming. But he was 71.

    The chaplain made the comment that some of the crew were helping but they weren’t in uniform.
    The deputy mayor says there was only one young boy in uniform who was helping him, along with the ship’s doctor (he took the first boat that arrived back to the boat and was there for a few hours. hen he left the professional rescuers were there.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-16638399

  85. Lily says:

    Perhaps what really helped was that the coastguard was alerted early. Otherwise, it could have been a very different story. Even after the coastguard first contacted the captain, he denied the seriousness of the situation. If those people on board hadn’t called family (and this was possible as they were so close to shore) & the family hadn’t alerted the coastguard, who knows what would have happened.

  86. Dalrock says:

    @Rmaxd

    Greyghost pre-empted your rationalisation, if the man kept the lifejacket & jumped together, their collective bodyheat, plus the mans ability to keep them both afloat would’ve greatly increased they’re ability to survive …

    He was there and I wasn’t. I can only respect his best judgment. As for him keeping the life jacket and them both jumping together, you are missing two points. 1) She wouldn’t jump with him even when she had the life jacket. He jumped first and then encouraged her to follow. Only then was she willing to jump. 2) The likelihood of them becoming separated once they hit the water would seem very high. If he has on a life jacket and she doesn’t, she is going to plunge further under the water than him. She can’t swim, and it was at night. How is he supposed to keep her safe if they can’t hang on? Is he supposed to dive down underwater at night and pull her up? Wouldn’t this require him to take the life jacket off first anyway?

    Given what little I know of the situation, his plan was sound but it entailed a great deal of risk. That risk unfortunately appeared. Why question a man who is willing to take necessary risks to save his wife? He was protecting his own. This is what men do. This is fundamentally different than demanding that men die so that women they have no obligation to can live.

  87. Prof. Woland says:

    It might behoove this cruse line to prominently publish what their policy is regarding their evacuation policies. Married or not, I don’t know what man would be insane enough to board a ship that had a policy of drowning their male passengers to favor their female ones. British Airways has a similar faux pas when they revealed their undisclosed policy of not seating unaccompanied minors to set next to single male passengers. I will never use their airline.

  88. Dalrock says:

    @Lily

    Perhaps what really helped was that the coastguard was alerted early. Otherwise, it could have been a very different story. Even after the coastguard first contacted the captain, he denied the seriousness of the situation. If those people on board hadn’t called family (and this was possible as they were so close to shore) & the family hadn’t alerted the coastguard, who knows what would have happened.

    By accounts I’ve read he claimed they only had an electrical problem. I’m sure we will learn much more in the future but right now many of his actions are baffling. Wikipedia says:

    As a protest against Schettino’s actions, some Italians wore T-shirts displaying harbor master De Falco’s exasperated order to him: Vada a bordo, cazzo! (translates as “Get the fuck on board!”).

  89. Lily says:

    @dalrock, there’s a whole range! Funnily including with the British wartime ‘Keep Calm and Carry on’ imagery.

  90. Jack Amok says:

    Elusive Wapati made an observation about invisible men:

    …the women were identified by their role in society, i.e., mother and grandmother. The men were an invisible anonymous mass, except as faceless callous brutes. Manwomanmyth has a video about how men are invisible, except as criminals and other miscreants. This incident is yet more evidence of that.

    This may be the cause of what I thought was the real shame of the evacuation. Not the lack of “women and children first” but “passengers first.” A good portion of the crew appears to have been more interested in saving their own skins than in using their (assumed) training and experience to help the passengers whom they were duty-bound to assist. The Captain himself was the lead slacker.

    Why would that be? Perhaps because in times past, men were celebrated for their courage and devotion to duty. Men of honor who did their duty under difficult and dangerous conditions were not invisible, they were celebrated. No longer. Now they are, as EW said, invisible. So why bother with duty. Apparently nobody cares.

    Of course, I think the reality is that a great many people do care, but the loudest voices in our society do not, and we increasingly allow the squawking screechbirds to dominate society. UK Fred’s point that the crewmembers who did help were mostly Filipino, Malaysian and Indonesian, while the oh-so-modern European officers were a mess is telling. The crew members from non-feminized societies acted with far more honor than the ones raised in feminist societies.

    Eric Schlegal

    it is important to remember that the Alpha males have always implemanted and enforced codes of conduct for the rest of the males, that THEY THEMSELVES are exempt from. When push comes to shove, they send the lesser men to their deaths and save themselves.

    Not entirely true. Not for all of history and all societies at least. The foundations of a civilization that conquered the globe was based on an agreement between Alphas and Betas where Alphas would hold themselves, and their peers, to a code of conduct, and the Betas would contribute to civilization. It’s a powerful concept, because it harnesses the incredible power and ability inherent in the large number of Betas to constructive means instead of to warfare as pawns of warring Alpha lords. That we are abandoning this deal is one reason for the collapse of our civilization.

    Dalrock

    Mid 50’s water temp. There’s a rule of thumb called 50-50-50. An average 50 year old man in average shape can swim 50 yards in 50 degree water without flotation devices or thermal protection (i.e. a wetsuit) before hypothermia stops him. To have swam to shore that night without a lifejacket, even as close as they were, a person would need to be fairly young, or an exceptionally good swimmer (i.e. not close to average).

  91. PT Barnum says:

    Mid 50’s water temp. There’s a rule of thumb called 50-50-50. An average 50 year old man in average shape can swim 50 yards in 50 degree water without flotation devices or thermal protection (i.e. a wetsuit) before hypothermia stops him.

    This is why America is such total sh*t. Why don’t you analyze that moronic rule in terms of time till hypothermia. You will find an exciting, and near retarded, low number no matter how low you put his swimming speed. For presumably pure burst exertion, cause there is hardly time for his muscles to run out of oxygen even if he weren’t breathing at all, much less overload lactic acid.

    The wisdom of the loudmouth, time-to-go-to-work tard is so great. I wish either of my grandfathers were still alive so I could yell at them.

  92. Anacaona says:

    I think this is one of the issues were is easy to tell what you would do with a cold rational mind in safe dry ground while in the middle of fly or flight response is hard to tell what one would do.
    That reminds me one episode where we had a huge hurricane and a mother of two, seven and a baby, was caught in the water with her kids. Her instinct was to carry the baby and let go of the seven year old because the baby had no chances of survival on his own while the seven year old had. Interestingly enough many men calculation was that they would had hold on into the seven year old because they already invested seven years in it while the baby was new, less costs in losing him. In this case particular case the seven year old hold into a branch long enough to be rescued and all of them survived. Of course hubby told me that he would probably would do the same because any seven year old we had will know how to swim already. Now of to find the nearest YMCA and take some swimming lessons, not that I ever will take a cruise :p

  93. Lily says:

    Correction on my previous comment, seems that female dancer was picked up by helicopter in the end (though she had planned to jump/swim when the water was higher). I do remember reading some of the male dancers swam, I don’t know if they had life jackets.

  94. Lord Valtrex says:

    Would this incident warrant a reconsideration of “lifeboat” design? I mean dangling people down the side of a multi-story sea-going apartment building, in small groups one-at-a-time, come on!

    Proposal:
    Install gigantic panels on the exterior hull of the ship. A big red button is pushed. Boom! The panels blow out. Splash! Into the water. Automatically inflate. Voilà! Ocean-going barges, complete with all amenities and supplies, that can hold hundreds of people each. Egress of the passengers, from the ship to the life barges,is done via inflatable slides (like airplanes uses for rapid de-embarkation).

  95. Anonymous age 69 says:

    >>hould the plane convenienlty come peacefully to rest in the ocean – when did that ever happen?

    Hit Google. Many decades ago, an airplane before jets lost an engine flying to Hawaii. That meant they could not make the trip with existing fuel loads. They called by radio, and found a ship in the area. They ditched nearby, and not one life was lost.

  96. Anonymous Reader says:

    According to a report on Drudge, the cruise line is offering those who were on board this ship a 30% discount on future cruises. Not going over real well, for some reason or other.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/italy/9030212/Costa-Concordia-insulting-cruise-offer-to-survivors.html

    [D: Amazing. The other funny thing is every article I see on this has advertisements for cruises. I've read that airlines pull all of their advertising after a major crash for a while. The cruise companies would do well to follow suit.]

  97. Dalrock says:

    Lord Valtrex,

    Or they could go with the oil rig style lifeboats:

  98. Jack Amok says:

    For presumably pure burst exertion, cause there is hardly time for his muscles to run out of oxygen even if he weren’t breathing at all, much less overload lactic acid.

    Barnum, put your money where your mouth is. Go jump in the water and try to swim it. I’ll promise to fish your body out of the water, if it doesn’t sink too fast.

    Not enough time to run out of oxygen? 50 yards? How fast to you think the average 50 year old swims? How much effort does it take? Meanwhile, his body is trying to conserve core temperature and blood stops flowing the the limbs. Pretty soon, the limbs slow down, then stop responding all together.

    That is, if the first plunge into the cold water doesn’t trigger cardiac arrest.

    Don’t try to bullshit a sailor about this stuff.

  99. Lavazza says:

    50 F is 10 C right? The temperature of the Baltic Sea does not get much higher in the summer. The years when the water has approached 20 C there is a growth of putrid algae that keep people from the beaches when the wind is wrong. I once jumped into 4 C water on a Christmas Eve. 3-4 meters was a long swim in that temperature.

  100. tikmnbjuyt says:

    Umm … the 50-50-50 rule says a person in 50-degree water for 50 minutes has a 50% better chance of surviving if he (or she) has a lifejacket on. Nothing to do with 50 year old men and nothing to do with being incapitated after swimming 50 meters. Water needs to be much, much colder to do that to you.

    Water in the mid- to high fifties — the temperature of the lake at my family cottage in mid-June — isn’t nearly cold enough to prevent anyone who was otherwise able from swimming to shore. Or to the lighthouse in the picture, for that matter.

  101. Rmaxd says:

    @Dalrock

    Nobodies trying to take anything away from the guy stupidly killing himself for his wife …

    The statement still stands, if he jumped holding the wife, their combined body heat & bouyancy, in particular the womans bouyancy & the mans upper body strength, wouldve greatly increased their ability to survive

    Also this is an indication of the massive amounts of indoctrination & brainwashing men receive, in society in general, where a man will goto such lengths for a woman who has alot less value then him as a provider & carer for his children & family then she does …

    The fact he gave up his role as a provider, to save a woman, over his future ability to provide for his own children, proves the stupidity of nobility & his actions

  102. Anonymous Reader says:

    The statement still stands, if he jumped holding the wife, their combined body heat & bouyancy, in particular the womans bouyancy & the mans upper body strength, wouldve greatly increased their ability to survive

    How much distance between the place they jumped from and the water? From personal experience I can say that it is difficult to hold onto much of anything upon hitting the water from a height of 24 feet (8 meters more or less). Most people don’t think about emergency procedures of any sort until the emergency is upon them – and most people don’t think real well in emergencies (that’s why emergency procedures if they are serious are drilled until they can be carried out without thinking).

    Monday morning quartebacking gets old after a while, doesn’t it?

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  106. just my opinion says:

    Very interesting stuff.. I agree with all these fellow men on here about femanism. Women of 2012 are wanting to not only wear the pants but just completley use men like they are dogs..I like to think that it is a little bit of men and womens fault that 2012 humans have become so gross, casual daters, free lovers, std spreaders..etc… but logically i have to blame the women just a little bit more.. I know there are plenty of low quality males in the world that treat women very poorly..but it seems like for every man i see acting this way i see 2 women that just want to play a bunch of mind games with a decent guys head.. Half the time these women just get whats coming to them.. they might get 200 K in divorce money for alimony but how longs that really gonna last them before they are just an unskilled lazy user out who is out of money. Not to mention the std risks for being promiscuous.. But its all a big game to women it seems like. I am not a chauvinist that views women as second class citizens but I do believe that men are more mature and have more self control over certain things and thats why we do run the world and are more fit to run the world. Ide really just like to say.. women who are typing and or reading this should thank men for computers cause women sure as heck did not have any part in inventing the computer just as men have invented almost everything useful device in history. Women should appreciate men for all we provide.. back in the old days we hunted and fed them. now in a modern society.. men provide inventions.. including the ones that operate in food factorys that feed women today.. women would be living in the stone age with out men..oh wait no they wouldn’t theyde be dead cause they are terrible hunters naturally.

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  108. N says:

    “This doesn’t mean that no men will ever sacrifice for women, but that men will not be expected to sacrifice for women, especially those women who have no obligation to the men themselves. Individual men will continue to protect their own, but the idea that men in general have an obligation to women in general is dead.”

    I totally agree.

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  110. supporter says:

    Many women I have spoken to are surprised that there isn’t a law enforcing “women and children first”. Many suggest that those men who “pushed past children” should be tried, just as the captain is.

    It’s a bit like expecting child support and lifelong alimony. Supporting one’s child or ex should be the decent thing to do – real chivalry. Once it’s enshrined in law, it is no longer decent. It’s expected. That is wrong.

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