Monday, March 21, 2016

SEAWORLD - Caves-in to Fanatics

IMHO:  It's a sad day when fanatics rule.  They can go to hell as far as I'm concerned.  What's next, banning of fish tanks in your home because your fish are harmed by not being in oceans or rivers?

"No more Shamu — SeaWorld to end breeding of killer whales" PBS NewsHour 3/17/2016


SUMMARY:  SeaWorld has made headlines several times in the past decade; trainer Dawn Brancheau was killed by a captive orca during a live show in 2010, and a 2013 documentary focused intense scrutiny on the family-oriented theme park over the use of killer whales as show animals.  On Thursday, SeaWorld announced that it would no longer breed or keep orcas. Jeffrey Brown reports.

JEFFREY BROWN (NewsHour):  Orca whales have been entertaining audiences at SeaWorld parks since 1964.  Once feared — they’re commonly known as killer whales — they have become hugely popular and even beloved.

Today’s announcement, made with the Humane Society, means the era of public exhibition is, gradually at least, coming to an end.

JOEL MANBY, CEO, SeaWorld:  Current orcas under our care will be the last generation at SeaWorld.  We’re going to phase out our theatrical shows.

JEFFREY BROWN:  SeaWorld is ending its breeding program for the animals, though it’s keeping the whales it already has.

And the Orlando-based company says the shows will give way to what it calls inspiring natural orca encounters.  Animal rights activists have long criticized keeping the animals in captivity.

WOMAN:  Any of us would be miserable if we had to spend out life living in a bathtub.  And orcas at SeaWorld are just as miserable.  They spend their lives confined to tiny tanks, where they go mad from confinement and boredom.

JEFFREY BROWN:  The parks came under new scrutiny in 2010 after one of the whales drowned a trainer.  That attack later became the peg for 2013’s “Blackfish,” a documentary examining the effects of captivity on killer whales.

The company also faced regulatory and legislative efforts to ban orca captivity.  And ticket sales to the parks have dropped significantly.

And we’re joined now by the man who made today’s announcement, SeaWorld CEO and president Joel Manby; and by Wayne Pacelle, CEO of the Humane Society of the United States, a longtime critic of SeaWorld that worked with it on the new reform measures.

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