You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

letters | Crash course in global relations

Casual reaction overlooks dangers of traveling abroad

I take issue with the conclusions arrived at by the editorial “Student’s China protest: Re-education at Newton North.” Calling Henry DeGroot a “feisty, red-blooded American kid,” and saying that his “actions [were] a bit childish” and that he “probably deserved a lecture” displayed a casual attitude toward a very serious situation that exists in today’s scary world, particularly for young people.

The notion that a citizen of the United States is invulnerable to punishment for breaking the laws or mores of a foreign hostile country is a disservice to a generation eager to travel and experience life in other lands.

Continue reading below

Unlike earlier days, Americans are not welcomed in certain countries. Doing such things as hiking in the mountains of Afghanistan and Iran, or writing words that are obviously unwelcome in a Communist-controlled country, as DeGroot did, are not adventurous; they are plain stupid and dangerous. Many young people have ended up in jail in other countries from such highjinks. The sooner high school-age people realize this, the safer they will be when they travel abroad.

John T. Gardiner


Loading comments...
Want each day's news headlines delivered fresh to your
inbox every morning? Just connect with us
in one of the following ways:
Please enter a valid email will never post anything without asking.
Privacy Policy
Subscriber Log In

You have reached the limit of 5 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of
Marketing image of