Not gonna lie: TINY HATS.
So I watched Blackfish.
In a bit of a emotional purgatory about this one. One one hand I know its obvious that whales shouldn’t be in captivity for the profit of places like Sea World, but on the other hand it was a very emotive piece of film making with a very heavy bias. As I gather, SeaWorld does do a lot of conservation work for whales, but is that just a smokescreen to make them feel better about keeping Orca’s in captivity?
After the whirlwind of emotive filmmaking that was Kony2012, I’m SO reluctant to give a knee jerk reaction based off the emotional testimonies of just one film.
And to be honest, what the fuck do I even know about whales? Their habitats, habits, emotional state etc. Essentially the only thing I know about whales is from watching Blackfish and Free Willy and a couple of aquariums when I was a lot younger. My exposure to marine life has been limited, and I am in no position to comment on what is right and wrong for Tillikum in particular.
If I was to say anything, it would be that Whales need to be phased out, rather than stopped completely. The Orcas they have in captivity at the moment might have an instinct for open water, but all they know is the structured life they have. You would have to spend a lot of time and research into how to introduce them to the wild or even to open water.
I certainly think that SeaWorld is on the wrong side of history keeping any large animals in captivity, and I hope to see a day where there are other methods to creating revenue for conservation work. But Tillikum, and others like him probably (probably, because I’m not a marine biologist) wouldn’t benefit from being forced into open water.
Best case scenario is that SeaWorld and others plans to phase them out over a period of 5-10 years. The revenue generated from people wanting to see the “last close up tank orca whales” would be tremendous, and it would benefit the conservation work SeaWorld does, but at the same time, with the definite end game of having no Whales, or other large animals, in captivity.
Essentially, I don’t know what the best thing to do about this is, but I’m certainly not treating Blackfish and The Cove as my only source of information on the issue. It’s one I will be looking into a lot more before I make any donations or become an advocate of any side.
Watch Blackfish, watch The Cove, watch documentaries, but I urge you to not become a bedroom activist off the back of them alone. Scenes are upsetting in them, but its a film.
Last point: When I was a lot younger I visited the Loro Parque mentioned in the film. And the best part I can remember was all the Koi Karp in the entrance pool getting fed and watching them scramble for food. The tigers, dolphins and other large animals left me feeling empty, guilty and un inspired. So I think what pro-captivity activists say about children being inspired by seeing them up close I don’t personally think is true.
Dear (your name here),
I hope you’re having a great day, maybe you can make mine better? I need to start gathering material for my university dissertation project, which is a music magazine directed towards a female audience that focuses on showcasing the best up and coming talent, unravelling…
Bekka has successfully run an amazing independent music magazine and constantly amazes me at how much she puts into all of her projects. This new one is bound to be another winner. Musicians? Send her an email :D