If program directors or worse yet their developers are not fundamentally astute in our boating safety culture, they would be better off with a conservative approach for the path of moving forward that would generate the least amount of error.
However, we see an extreme forward movement that creates a great amount of harm.
Otherwise, confusion and a lack of established operational goals are a given. And they will happen.
Our boating traditions should be adhered, this means you become a mariner or you were one already.
What does ‘being a mariner’ mean? Seamanship skills, not rescue skills! Rescue is just one little corner of what we do when we go to work. And our field preparation is 85% of that role.
A large majority of these lifesavers are not going to study seamanship skills, and will not put time into developing them.
Especially in their group if the one they follow resists our culture, they will resist in concert. Instead they will protect the comfort of ‘getting by with it’ until a mishap forces them to face our maritime reality.
The problem we have is the inherent cultural worth is reduced people will give that up to get more for less.
Our ancestors gave us meaning for boating and water safety. When we define the facts and the objectives of what our water safety reality is, we make agreements on constraints of what we should do.
We conduct ourselves with rules and regulations and what we should do evidenced by prior mishaps.
Do not wait to create a mishap and then review it and prompt the trite comment of ‘we will learn lessons from this’. We already learned and we won’t create an accident. They have it backwards!
Social connection has created groups that protect their territory rather than look at our true heritage. In fact they ignore it at all costs drawing attention back to themselves. They are not community based.
They look at their department, their team vs. the other team, even if they have mutual aid, the dominance of one group over another smothers our safety reality under perceptions of competitiveness.
They have lost the structure and the ethic of acting in a professional manner that keeps us away from mishaps.
Instead these groups prefer to stay comfortable in potential risk and will do anything to stay there. Who doesn’t know that it’s a law to wear a USCG properly fitted, and type of Lifejacket? Yet we see many who resist this basic life support and they call themselves lifesavers!
How many get underway with a painter line hanging on their bow? The list is long like an infection these poor habits spread in migration of others not knowing what a maritime community is, and therefore they are not part of it.
What is our objective? Is it the structure of protecting their ego for the sake of service that important? It is when there is no agreement in a shared reality of objective facts that we have two different ways to look at how our community functions on optimal stability. This has been going on for centuries.
Children will negotiate and they do it by getting together and playing with one another, they look at other viewpoints, and they start to play pretend roles and they act it out, and they all play the game together to learn.
Watch how you act. Tell your story. Observe the story consequence.
Be willing to play with one another and see other viewpoints.
Play Fair and Listen.