Activism: Hey, Sea World- (Don't) Free Tilly!

Those who know me, know I don't get all socially conscience. I am always weary of agenda. Not just from the organization or group of individuals doing wrong in the world, but the so called "do gooders". Yes I'm jaded. When I was younger I helped "Save the Whales". I even adopted a whale when I was in my early twenties. Oh Greenpeace... the memories we have to share back in the 80's...

As I mentioned in a past blog post, I love the ocean. Marine life. 

As a young girl there was little I did not know about whales, dolphins, and orcas. The more I did learn the more I loved them. 



I went to Sea World with my aunt when I was around 13 years old. Still have pictures. What a fantastic experience! At the same time I remember being sad. As I walked by the tank after the show...something just didn't feel right. They didn't belong there in that small space so I can be entertained by their splashing and tricks. Their floppy fin... I knew why it was flopped over. I was only 13. How come these "experienced trainers" didn't know? Why were they saying the life span was far less in the wild than what I knew to be different? Well there wasn't Google back then... People in the 80's couldn't verify instantly if someone was full of crap.

I wanted so bad to be a marine biologist. I wanted to work at Sea World and be near these wonderful creatures. As I got older I realized that it wouldn't be possible for me to fulfill that dream.

So. I watched Blackfish. I avoided it for a long time because I simply don't want to hear a bunch of bleeding liberals cry about injustices. I'm jaded, remember?

I cried. Not just because of the compelling testimonies from former trainers or the disturbing imagery, because it brought back feelings I had when I was 13. I remember seeing one of the killer whales bleeding after the show, just like in the film. I think I even asked my aunt why. I don't remember an answer. The mixed emotions I felt after watching them perform. Wanting them to be free and with their families. Yet, being awe struck by their presence.

My suggestion to you, Sea World, is to redeem yourself. Hire some reputable biologists, preferably those specific to marine mammals. Then, upon their recommendations only, provide an appropriate habitat. Since you already screwed up their family units the only thing you can do is make the rest of their life less messed up. This means no more performances. No more isolation. Educate your staff and the communities about these beautiful creatures. Be their advocate! People don't need to see them jumping in the air or having trainers ride on their backs. You have made enough money off the blood of the innocent. Time to stop and make things right. As right as they can possibly be at this point. Why do I say "don't free Tilly"? because it's clear that setting him into the wild won't make it any better for him. I don't have all the answers because I'm not an expert.

It's not just Sea World and killer whales... right now on our California coasts the whale watching charters are doing harm to blue whales. People want to get just a little closer to experience the wonders of the sea and are willing to pay big bucks for it... Now these gentle giants are reportedly attacking boats at random. Not just charter boats but boats minding their own business. Since when has a whale EVER shown an act of aggression on mankind? Guess what? They are fed up with our crap.

I took a 25 year break from defending my friends of the sea. Break is over.




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