If you were unaware, a SeaWorld trainer died tragically yesterday when Tilikum (also known as Shamu) apparently drowned her during a show. PETA is quoted as saying that they have been talking with SeaWorld for years about confining ocean-going mammals to small tanks and having them perform the same tricks over and over again. They explained that it is almost natural that the whale would "lash out". You know, if I were a whale, I would lash out too. I do think that animals are quite amazing and being able to see them is extraordinary (even though the zoo always depresses me because the animals are stuck in boring cages). However, why should an animal have to suffer for its instincts? People often try to throw human qualities on them. Statements like, "It didn't mean to hurt anyone" are completely ridiculous. Orcas are wild and are known for killing whales. It meant to do what it did because that is its nature. Why punish it for being a killer whale? I say this because in most instances, the animals are killed after things like this happen. In some animals, that is because they have developed a taste for human flesh (like lions), but that would not be the case if people would just leave well enough alone. We have stunning 3D technology now and efforts from the creators of Planet Earth and Blue Planet have shown us creatures we might never have seen otherwise. Instead of putting money into the continued confinement of wild animals, why not support their freedom? Is it that important to see the animal up close? Is it that life changing?
But I'm open to other opinions. If you think otherwise, sound off and let me know.
Image Animal Planet via istockphoto