Blackfish Research Paper

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SeaWorld. We have all heard the name, considering they were once one of the most successful amusement parks in the world. Everyone wanted to come see Shamu, the huge majestic killer whale, do tricks so close to us we could get soaked. The whales always seemed to be in sync with the performers; we thought nothing could top getting splashed by gallons of water by a humongous whale. Unfortunately, in recent years, the saying “all press is good press” has not seemed to apply to SeaWorld. In 2013, the documentary Blackfish debuted at Sundance Film Festival. It was then released around the world, highlighting what goes on behind the scenes in SeaWorld. The movie especially focuses on one particular whale, Tilikum, who has been involved in three killings. …show more content…
As shown in Blackfish, though these animals may seem harmless during shows, they are still dangerous. Tilikum killed Dawn Brancheau in 2010 after a “Dine with Shamu” show. Tilikum altogether has been linked to three different deaths during his tenure as a show animal. The first was at “Sealand of the Pacific” in Canada, where they withheld food from him as well as knowingly put him in the same living space with animals that wanted to hurt him. Unfortunately, when a young trainer’s foot slipped into the water Tilikum grabbed it, subsequently pulling her under (“Dawn Brancheau’s Death: The Shocking Truth”). This girl did nothing to provoke the whale; he most likely had become extremely agitated as well as hungry for attention. The next two incidents happened at SeaWorld parks. The first was when a man managed to sneak his way into the highly securitized park. He was found the next day on Tilikum’s back, dead. SeaWorld told the press that the man had died of hypothermia, however, the fact that Tilikum had already been involved in a killing prior to this event made SeaWorld’s explanation highly suspicious. Then, as mentioned before, Dawn Brancheau’s death happened. This was incredibly shocking to everyone that had come to love SeaWorld. Ms. Brancheau was known in the SeaWorld employee community as a trainer who took safety extremely seriously …show more content…
First, these animals have families that they are deeply connected to. Then all of sudden they are ripped from that connection and put with unknown orcas (“10 Things You Didn’t Know About SeaWorld”). We view the kidnapping of a human as one of the ultimate crimes, something that only the scum of the Earth would ever think of doing. Yet we condone the act of taking these Orcas away from their families. Second, one of the men involved in the kidnapping of the whales in the documentary described it as one of the hardest things he had ever had to do. He had to endure through listening to Tilikum’s protests as he was literally ripped away from his parents. How is this moral? How can someone condone, much less support this type of behavior all in the name of entertainment? Third, this act is basically torture to these animals that are so docile when out in the wild. Another account of this immoral behavior in the documentary is when SeaWorld bred a female whale. Soon after she had her baby, it was taken away from her and transported to another park. The interviewees from the documentary said the mother was making noises that none of them had ever even heard before. The whale’s mother whale was trying to communicate with her son while she was clearly in agony. There is no possible way to support this act of procuring whales simply for our viewing

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