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  • #21
    Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

    I may sound lile and enviromentalist Hippie right now but Animals do not belong in captivity. They lose their knowledge and abilty to hunt and lose their wild behavior. They are WILD animals for a reason, meant to roam in their natural habitat. Keiko went back to Iceland after being in captivity for umpteen years and starved to death because he lost the ability to hunt and was relieng on human hand outs. This is just my two cents.

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    • #22
      Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

      ^That's fair. So what do we do with the ones in captivity? Let them die off?

      I don't think it would do anymore harm to continue breeding captive animals. They only know what they are raised with, so they don't have the emotion of missing the wild.

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      • #23
        Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

        Originally posted by brendonb28 View Post
        I may sound lile and enviromentalist Hippie right now but Animals do not belong in captivity. They lose their knowledge and abilty to hunt and lose their wild behavior. They are WILD animals for a reason, meant to roam in their natural habitat. Keiko went back to Iceland after being in captivity for umpteen years and starved to death because he lost the ability to hunt and was relieng on human hand outs. This is just my two cents.
        Animals in captivity were once kept for purely entertainment and exploitative reasons. I think that is what is stuck in so many people's heads when they think of captive animals. You need to recognize how important captive animals are now, for many different reasons (as long as they are kept in AZA approved facilities and are kept to a standard).

        In a perfect world we would all live in harmony with nature, and all animals would have plenty of healthy habitat to roam in and would roam free with no interference from human beings. Unfortunately we don't live in a perfect world. In this world, people rarely care for that which they cannot see, touch and experience. That's why animal ambassadors are so important to keep us aware of what we need to do to care for our animals and the habitats they live in so we can preserve them. Also, without captive animals, there are many animals that would be extinct. One example is the Black Rhino, which would be extinct if we didn't have them in captivity.

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        • #24
          Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

          From a purely business standpoint, SeaWorld desperately needs to fight an ongoing decline in attendance. In a year (2013) where every other major theme park operator saw increases in attendance (Disney/Universal/SixFlags[!]/Cedar Fair) SeaWorld is the only group with a decline.

          As the orca showcases are the bread which the business is buttered upon, this bill would be a disaster for SeaWorld. If I were an investor in SeaWorld (I'm not; personal distaste for circus animal captivity,) I'd be really miffed that the company is spinning, masking their attendance decline with higher revenue via concession and merch sales, and focusing on that as a long term strategy. You can read it here. Anyone who has taken a basic college economics class knows that one can only push price elasticity so far before you have to address driving people into the store.

          I mean, Disney has been raked across the coals for MyMagic+, specifically designed to increase per guest revenue over guest satisfaction via rides and attractions. And yet, Disney has posted attendance increases each quarter of the past year while raising prices on admission and merch. More people going to the store. More money spend by each person inside the store. More total profit for the store. SeaWorld is at the top of a vicious cycle here: less people coming to the store; more spending per person by the people in the store; less people wanting to spend more so less attendance; discounts to get people in the store (Groupon); less revenue generated by the store but more popularity. And so on.

          While I think that Blackfish has had some form of impact on the business, and I suspect that the film will continue to be shared and spread among friends, furthering the impact, at present, I think the film, for the most part, has preached to the choir. Which is to say that if you already found large, intelligent animals performing circus tricks in captivity distasteful, Blackfish reinforced your perception of distaste. But...those people were already NOT going to SeaWorld. SeaWorld's issue right now is why their overall attendance (which didn't include that cohort which would be predisposed to watch Blackfish,) is sliding, especially in a year where theme park attendance is thriving and growing.

          To put this another way, this bill will appeal to those voters already disinclined to go to SeaWorld, empowered by Blackfish. SeaWorld needs to mos def fight its passage, but long term, their issue is less Blackfish and more declining public interest in their theme park offerings. Higher prices on plushies can only take them so far.

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          • #25
            Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

            "In this world, people rarely care for that which they cannot see, touch and experience."

            I'd really like for this to stop being a point of debate unless there's quantifiable data to back this up. It's invalid opinion versus data-supported.

            I care about many things I can't see, touch and experience. I ain't never been to the stars and yet I still care about the space program. Plenty of folks care about a higher power that nobody in the history of mankind has been able to see, touch and experience. And in the reverse, there are plenty of people at intersections begging for food and money that we overlook and don't care about, despite being able to see, touch and experience their need and suffering.

            I agree with you that the issue of animal captivity is more shades of gray that black and white (my line is drawn at circus acts and 'people rides.') And I suspect that Blackfish focuses attention on a small debate (orcas in captivity) versus the more important debate (humans destroying the planet and its habitats.) But the "touch equals care equals change" is anecdotal evidence, at best, and that's anything but evidence.

            What to see how amazing an orca is? Tune into the Discover Channel or Animal Planet! Totally non-touch solution. The issue is that people WANT to actually see, touch and experience orcas in easily accessed comfort. People care, but on their own terms, and via the expression of the idea that humans hold dominion over every other creature on the planet. They want the orcas to flip and dance to "Conga" before grabbing some BBQ and buying a cute Shamu T-Shirt (no doubt in XXXXL whale size; see America's waist.)

            And that's their choice and currently entirely available to them. But that sight, that touch, that experience isn't leading to massive behavioral changes leading to habitat preservation and ecological renewal. Liking animals based on exposure to said animals at a zoo or marine display industry facility ain't stopping widespread ecological exploitation of the habitats around the world. We're still frakking, and shale mining, and deep-see drilling, and mountaintop removal mining and so on and so forth.

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            • #26
              Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

              No I will not concede that point, for the reasons I gave in my original post. Your use of those things in comparison to the cetaceans at SeaWorld is absolutely not in any way correct. If we can't base a conversation on the realities of cetacean captivity without resorting to incorrect and deliberately emotionally manipulative rhetoric, then we can't have a true conversation about it at all.
              SeaWorldMike, I am attempting to have a "true conversation" with you. In rhetoric, appealing to emotions is a vital tool in persuasion. I have used it and will continue to use it to get people to think about an issue I believe in. Please do not rebuke me for using a rheotorical method that is the oldest and most effective use of persuasion.

              SeaWorldMike, you state that I am factually incorrect to compare Orca inside of SeaWorld to that of various forms of captivity. By what powers of divinity gives you this right to declare that my comparisions are incorrect? Is it just your own singular opinion? Again, back this source.

              My orca captivity analogies are essentially stolen from far greater people than myself. Here is my proof that my analogies are based in truth:

              "There is about as much educational benefit to be gained in studying dolpins in captivity as there would be studying mankind by only observing prisoners held in solitary." Jacques Cousteau

              "No Aquarium, no tank in a marine land, however spacious it may be, can begin to duplicate the conditions of the sea, and no dolphin who inhaits one of those aquariums or one of those marine lands can be considered normal." Jacques Cousteau

              "I've been studying orca for over twenty years officially, unofficially since I was about six years old. It's been at least fifteen years studying them in the wild before I saw my first orca in captivity...and I was so devasted that I literally threw up. I vomited right there and then in front of these orca because I was just so horrified about what was going on with these animals in captivity." Dr. Ingrid Visser.

              "One faction views SeaWorld as a Garden Hilton for killer whales, and the other views it as Hanoi Hilton for killer whales." David Kirby, author of Death at SeaWorld
              SeaWorldMike, you asked me to re-read your post. I did. I also listened to your podcast and the comments garnered from your podcasts. Here are my conclusions: Your opinions reflect that of a SeaWorld apologist. The podcast seemed very one sided to that of the views of SeaWorld. You did not offer, or concede any points raised by the movie. I also note that in the comment section of the podcast many writers expressed the opinion that your views were one sided toward SeaWorld.

              I know that you are a co-host of the unofficial podcast for SeaWorld. Are you afraid to offer a criticism of SeaWorld regarding the health (mental, not necessarily physical) and well being of the orcas at SeaWorld? Are you or Micechat compensated by SeaWorld, either financially or by benefit of gift or access to the park? I think it would be important to disclose your or Micechat's biases.

              I am not compensated in any way by animal activist groups whatsoever. Nor am I member of any such group.

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              • #27
                Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                Seaworld has threatened to pull out of San Diego for reasons far less serious than what the possible ramifications that this legislation would bring. They don't own the land. They will salvage what they can, bulldoze the rest and head to a state that isn't as advisarial. and far more business friendly.The economic impact on not just San Diego but Southern Ca in general would be significant. Considering the state of the economy of the State of CA is at this time, (it's nowhere as good was what the general media is saying it is) this isn't a real smart move, IMHO. The fact that this legislation is being sponsered by someone who isn't from San Diego is of concern. Personally I would be upset if someone from the Peoples Republic of Santa Monica trying to dictate what is done here.

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                • #28
                  Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                  Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                  From a purely business standpoint, SeaWorld desperately needs to fight an ongoing decline in attendance. In a year (2013) where every other major theme park operator saw increases in attendance (Disney/Universal/SixFlags[!]/Cedar Fair) SeaWorld is the only group with a decline.
                  Not sure you're accurate on this issue....

                  "Attendance in 2013 declined by 4.1% from 24.4 million guests in 2012 to 23.4 million guests in 2013. The decline was primarily attributable to the expected result of planned pricing and yield management strategies that increased revenue but reduced low yielding and free attendance. Also contributing to the decline in full year attendance was unexpected adverse weather conditions in the Company's second quarter and July as well as the impact of an early Easter in 2013."

                  All facts borne out by the times when the drop in attendance happened specifically

                  Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                  As the orca showcases are the bread which the business is buttered upon, this bill would be a disaster for SeaWorld. If I were an investor in SeaWorld (I'm not; personal distaste for circus animal captivity,) I'd be really miffed that the company is spinning, masking their attendance decline with higher revenue via concession and merch sales, and focusing on that as a long term strategy. You can read it here. Anyone who has taken a basic college economics class knows that one can only push price elasticity so far before you have to address driving people into the store.
                  Circus animal captivity? Absolutely ridiculous. Circuses exploit animals for entertainment purposes. There is no science, there isn't anything being done in the way of making people aware of the animals plight in the wild, nothing along those lines at all. SeaWorld has a product; it is education and awareness of our oceans etc. made fun. Again, I don't understand why that is so hard to grasp for people.

                  I hardly see any spin to anything here, also. They accurately assessed when the drops in attendance occurred and the reasons why. They know what they are doing.

                  Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                  I mean, Disney has been raked across the coals for MyMagic+, specifically designed to increase per guest revenue over guest satisfaction via rides and attractions. And yet, Disney has posted attendance increases each quarter of the past year while raising prices on admission and merch. More people going to the store. More money spend by each person inside the store. More total profit for the store. SeaWorld is at the top of a vicious cycle here: less people coming to the store; more spending per person by the people in the store; less people wanting to spend more so less attendance; discounts to get people in the store (Groupon); less revenue generated by the store but more popularity. And so on.
                  I'm not sure about this, but I would suspect that while there is some crossover to be sure, I'm guessing that those who go to SeaWorld are a different crowd from those who attend Disney parks regularly. I'd love to have more information on the exact demographics involved. Interesting to say the least. They certainly are different kinds of parks, not counting AK.

                  Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                  While I think that Blackfish has had some form of impact on the business, and I suspect that the film will continue to be shared and spread among friends, furthering the impact, at present, I think the film, for the most part, has preached to the choir. Which is to say that if you already found large, intelligent animals performing circus tricks in captivity distasteful, Blackfish reinforced your perception of distaste. But...those people were already NOT going to SeaWorld. SeaWorld's issue right now is why their overall attendance (which didn't include that cohort which would be predisposed to watch Blackfish,) is sliding, especially in a year where theme park attendance is thriving and growing.
                  I suspect you are correct in saying that Blackfish had little to no impact on attendance and will continue to have little impact on it, at least for the immediate future. Sliding attendance in one year only isn't something to worry about and I believe that SeaWorld framed the slight slip in attendance accurately.

                  Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                  To put this another way, this bill will appeal to those voters already disinclined to go to SeaWorld, empowered by Blackfish. SeaWorld needs to mos def fight its passage, but long term, their issue is less Blackfish and more declining public interest in their theme park offerings. Higher prices on plushies can only take them so far.
                  I think there isn't much to worry about, in all honesty. Attendance is up so for for Q1 of this year. If this was a multi-year trend, then I believe there would be something to be concerned about.

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                  • #29
                    Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                    Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                    "In this world, people rarely care for that which they cannot see, touch and experience."

                    I'd really like for this to stop being a point of debate unless there's quantifiable data to back this up. It's invalid opinion versus data-supported.
                    When debating any subject you have to rely on your knowledge of things, as well as your knowledge of how people are as well. While I may not have quoted any empirical data on the subject, I know from experience that this tends to be true.

                    Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                    I care about many things I can't see, touch and experience. I ain't never been to the stars and yet I still care about the space program. Plenty of folks care about a higher power that nobody in the history of mankind has been able to see, touch and experience. And in the reverse, there are plenty of people at intersections begging for food and money that we overlook and don't care about, despite being able to see, touch and experience their need and suffering.
                    Now you're using less than empirical data, but I understand, it is to make a point. Unfortunately the point falls flat because people begging at intersections for money/food are rarely homeless or suffering. My local news station did a story on this very thing, investigating it pretty thoroughly. Most of the panhandlers have money and/or means; many of them are drug addicts, etc. And they get plenty of cash. They found that the average money made by panhandlers was between $60.00 and $300.00 a day. Also, our local police academy makes their cadets go out for one afternoon and beg at a street corner for experience in how these people operate (they give the money to charity). Their experiences also support this information. So, in fact, you have proved my point inadvertently. People DO care what they can see or touch and experience.

                    Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                    I agree with you that the issue of animal captivity is more shades of gray that black and white (my line is drawn at circus acts and 'people rides.') And I suspect that Blackfish focuses attention on a small debate (orcas in captivity) versus the more important debate (humans destroying the planet and its habitats.) But the "touch equals care equals change" is anecdotal evidence, at best, and that's anything but evidence.
                    I disagree based upon, again, personal experience. All the SeaWorld fans I know fell in love with wildlife, cetaceans, etc. from going to SeaWorld and again and again and again I see it inspire people to take action, to do positive things and make positive change. I've seen it over and over....from experiencing things for themselves at SeaWorld.

                    Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                    What to see how amazing an orca is? Tune into the Discover Channel or Animal Planet! Totally non-touch solution. The issue is that people WANT to actually see, touch and experience orcas in easily accessed comfort. People care, but on their own terms, and via the expression of the idea that humans hold dominion over every other creature on the planet. They want the orcas to flip and dance to "Conga" before grabbing some BBQ and buying a cute Shamu T-Shirt (no doubt in XXXXL whale size; see America's waist.)
                    Well, I think you are correct in some ways...people do want to have it easy to experience. That is the nature of the human animal, and if you know a way to change that, please let me know. It is unfortunate, but true, and it isn't likely to change anytime soon. But if Shamu inspires visitors to SeaWorld to get out and take action, make positive change, then it is worth it. I think your view is a bit cynical.

                    Originally posted by AaroniusPolonius View Post
                    And that's their choice and currently entirely available to them. But that sight, that touch, that experience isn't leading to massive behavioral changes leading to habitat preservation and ecological renewal. Liking animals based on exposure to said animals at a zoo or marine display industry facility ain't stopping widespread ecological exploitation of the habitats around the world. We're still frakking, and shale mining, and deep-see drilling, and mountaintop removal mining and so on and so forth.
                    I hear from people all the time who tell me how inspired their visit to SeaWorld made them. How it inspired them to change locally, and think on a more global scale. So my experience does not mirror your opinion at all.

                    Yes, we are still exploiting the oceans and the planet, but this won't stop until we reach people. If you have a better way to make people on a massive scale aware of these things, we are all waiting to hear it.

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                      Don't thiink they'll get the bill passed. If they did, the dolphins would likely be next on their hit list, followed by all the other animals at the park....and the the San Diego Zoo and it's wildlife park. Legislators like this I feel are out to make a name for themselves by banning everything they can that builds an up close and personal appreaciation by adults and children of nature and it's beautiful wildlife.
                      To Boldly Go Where No MiceChatter Has Gone Before!

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                      • #31
                        Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                        SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:SEAS) a leading theme park and entertainment company, on 13 march reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year of 2013. SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. (NYSE:SEAS) stock opened at $31.10 in last session, and closed at $32.56 by gaining 3.33%. The 52 week range of $27.48 – $39.65. Company’s market capitalization is $2.92 billion.]
                        Looks like Wall Street is not worried about the bill passing either.

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                        • #32
                          Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                          A politician should lose their job for crippling an important industry in the state. Leisure.
                          Be Cool Stay in School!
                          Next year I'm trying for a summer internship at Stark Industries.

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                            Not sure you're accurate on this issue....

                            "Attendance in 2013 declined by 4.1% from 24.4 million guests in 2012 to 23.4 million guests in 2013. The decline was primarily attributable to the expected result of planned pricing and yield management strategies that increased revenue but reduced low yielding and free attendance. Also contributing to the decline in full year attendance was unexpected adverse weather conditions in the Company's second quarter and July as well as the impact of an early Easter in 2013."

                            All facts borne out by the times when the drop in attendance happened specifically
                            ...and this is spin, as no other theme park chain reported issues with early Easter or "unexpected weather conditions."

                            Circus animal captivity? Absolutely ridiculous. Circuses exploit animals for entertainment purposes. There is no science, there isn't anything being done in the way of making people aware of the animals plight in the wild, nothing along those lines at all. SeaWorld has a product; it is education and awareness of our oceans etc. made fun. Again, I don't understand why that is so hard to grasp for people.
                            Err...if the animals are to perform circus tricks to a musical soundtrack, or blow a horn like an actual human, ma!...that's the very definition of a circus trick. The Monterey Aquarium this ain't. I respect, especially with regards to the orcas, that the tricks are behaviors that actually stave off boredom and provide stimulation for the whales. Which leads us into a paradox: in order for the orcas to be stimulated and entertained in their environments, they need to learn and perform behaviors, lest the environments that SeaWorld has created for them bore these intelligent creatures...which certainly suggests that at present, humans can't provide a stimulating, enriching environment for orcas that matches their lives at sea.

                            I suspect you are correct in saying that Blackfish had little to no impact on attendance and will continue to have little impact on it, at least for the immediate future. Sliding attendance in one year only isn't something to worry about and I believe that SeaWorld framed the slight slip in attendance accurately.
                            If the Blackfish supporters were clever marketeers (the jury is still out,) I'd suggest that they attempt to frame SeaWorld and people who go to SeaWorld as backwards, hateful freaks, much like say liberal America has done with Chick-Fil-A with regards to the gays. Don't get me wrong, Chick-Fil-A was and is in no danger of going out of business because of the framing, but it associates the brand with a demography that in the long term is unsustainable. Sure, much like everyone who lined up for a chicken sammy on Chick-Fil-A Day, some will wear their support on their sleeve, and absolutely not care. But...some will. (Lord, the left needs a Karl Rove *******.)

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                            • #34
                              Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                              While I may not have quoted any empirical data on the subject, I know from experience that this tends to be true.
                              Which, of course, breaks the first rule of any rational debate. We unfortunately live in an era where "truthiness" is more important that empirical data. Your experience is merely one point in a cohort of people in a study providing empirical data with the thesis: does physical proximity to animals provoke behavioral change in large groups of human beings? Since all we have to rely on is your personal experience or anecdotal evidence, that's not debate; that's an exchange of opinion. You're expressing a belief that experience engenders empathy, not demonstrating that via hard data.
                              I care about many things I can't see, touch and experience. I ain't never been to the stars and yet I still care about the space program. Plenty of folks care about a higher power that nobody in the history of mankind has been able to see, touch and experience. And in the reverse, there are plenty of people at intersections begging for food and money that we overlook and don't care about, despite being able to see, touch and experience their need and suffering.



                              Now you're using less than empirical data, but I understand, it is to make a point. Unfortunately the point falls flat because people begging at intersections for money/food are rarely homeless or suffering. My local news station did a story on this very thing, investigating it pretty thoroughly. Most of the panhandlers have money and/or means; many of them are drug addicts, etc. And they get plenty of cash. They found that the average money made by panhandlers was between $60.00 and $300.00 a day. Also, our local police academy makes their cadets go out for one afternoon and beg at a street corner for experience in how these people operate (they give the money to charity). Their experiences also support this information. So, in fact, you have proved my point inadvertently. People DO care what they can see or touch and experience.
                              Actually, that was to make a point ENTIRELY about the inaccuracy of anecdotal evidence. My personal interest in the space program is as invalid as evidence as your belief that direct experiences with animals at SeaWorld engenders behavioral change. Would I be more interested if I could touch the Moon? I don't know. What I do know is that my personal interest or lack thereof is irrelevant as a single point. It's only as a part of a stream of data that one could quantify that.

                              And unless your local news station provided data over a period of at least three months for an accurate read regarding panhandling trends, that's not research; that's reporting in the epoch of diminished standards.

                              Here's one I know off the top of my head: Roughly 60% of people in the United States believe in God. Nobody has seen, touched or experienced God. Certainly nobody can prove it. And yet...60%.

                              I disagree based upon, again, personal experience. All the SeaWorld fans I know fell in love with wildlife, cetaceans, etc. from going to SeaWorld and again and again and again I see it inspire people to take action, to do positive things and make positive change. I've seen it over and over....from experiencing things for themselves at SeaWorld.
                              Your personal experience is irrelevant. Get the data, dude.

                              I think your view is a bit cynical.
                              Oh, no doubt! Massively so. I work in marketing. I know the true empty nature of the human soul. In all seriousness, there are so many things that we actually have data on, actually have hard numbers to work with, and yet we do nothing.

                              Yes, we are still exploiting the oceans and the planet, but this won't stop until we reach people. If you have a better way to make people on a massive scale aware of these things, we are all waiting to hear it.
                              Oh, I'm certain we're going to kill half the planet before we do anything. But I'm also unsure that SeaWorld is the way to reach that massive scale of awareness. Incidentally, this isn't just SeaWorld: this is a human problem. Here's an example (and something that SeaWorld has helped with, as part of the endangered species program,) the Florida manatee. We all know that these animals are endangered primarily because humans like sport boating. And yet, if its between the survival of a species or the survival of a pastime, the pastime wins. So, I guess I'm saying SeaWorld is something of a cultural manifestation of this refusal to engender actual, genuine, lasting action. (An optimist might say that it's the first step towards it.) "Look, we're saving these animals from...us."

                              (SeaWorldMike: that's for engaging with me intelligently.)

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                Re: Bill may ban SeaWorld San Diego from using Orcas

                                Originally posted by SeaWorldMike View Post

                                So Orca should be free but not all other animals? I don't get it. Why is that? I'm trying to make sense of your internal logic here. If Orca should be free, shouldn't dolphins? Shouldn't sea Lions, otters, lions and tigers and bears (Oh My!) horses, cows, dogs, cats etc. etc. Where do you draw the line? What constitutes slavery for one animal but isn't slavery for another animal? Please enlighten me.

                                .
                                Self awareness. Dolphins and Orcas.

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