-By Warner Todd Huston
The Titanic sunk 100 years ago this year. The great ship went down in international waters as a vessel of British registry. When it went down the United States was barely a presence on the international stage. Yet now, 100 years later, American Democrats imagine they have the duty and power to control what will happen at the final resting place of over 1,500 passengers.
In their arrogance and led by the haughty and self-referential Senator John Kerry (D, Mass.), American Democrats are pushing Congress to pass legislation to make the wreck site of the Titanic off limits to further exploration.
Supporters of the Kerry arrogance claim that the Titanic’s final resting place should be afforded the same legal standing as a cemetery and James P. Delgado, director of maritime heritage at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, says that he believes “there are people inside” the unexplored sections of the ship.
Few experts agree with this assessment, though. The Times notes that Hollywoodite James Cameron, who has been through the wreckage more than just about anyone, says he’s never once seen any evidence of bones or human remains.
But here is Senator Kerry imagining that the U.S. Commerce Dept. should have the power to extend its control over a site that the U.S. has exactly nothing at all to do with. The U.S. has no right at all to interfere with the site.
Regardless, nanny-state Democrats imagine that their power is so great that they can even take control of sites not even properly under American control.
As mentioned, the U.S. wasn’t really even an international player when the ship went down. In 1912 when the Titanic sank, the US had taken only one real step out onto the international stage. That was the short but bloody 1898 Spanish American war and the subsequent disaster in the form of the Philippine Insurrection, an experience that soured the U.S. on colonial-styled adventures.
It simply amazes me that Democrats think they have any say at all over this wreck and that they are willing to allocate our money to protect the site. It is galling in this day of deep federal red ink that such is the case.
Money will certainly have to be allocated for this effort, after all. Monitoring will have to be established, ships ready to be dispatched to protect it must be prepared and maintained, regulators will have to be appointed and paid for their service. Offices and expenses will have to be floated (no pun intended… OK, pun intended). Our nation is drowning in red ink and Democrats want to spend millions to protect a ship over which the U.S. has no claim.
Should the Titanic be protected? Perhaps. I have no strong opinion either way, really. But if it is to be protected let others do it and pay for it. The U.S. should have no role at all in this matter.
Still, this is a fitting metaphor for the Democrat Party. From old tropes like “rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic,” to various sinking references, linking the Democrats to the Titanic’s fate is pretty apt.