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The Barenaked Ladies Cancel Their Show At Seaworld Because Of 'Blackfish'

The Barenaked Ladies care about orcas

 

I had never realized that Sea World had concerts, but if you check their website you will realize that Willie Nelson, Cheap Trick, REO Speedwagon are scheduled for February 2014 (and more in the following months) in Seaworld Orlando. But they should all follow the examples of Canadian band Barenaked Ladies, who just canceled their apparition in the amusement park for a very good reason: Seaworld is an abomination! Yeah, it took me some time to realize this, as, like anybody else, I used to love this sort of places when I was young, I was in love with these giant playful and gentle whales and dolphins! Except that they are in prison, except that they are traumatized because kept in a small pool whereas they swim miles and miles in the wild, and this is without mentioning the facts that the babies are captured and taken from their mothers at a very young age, and that these animals are mistreated for human entertainment.

So Barenaked Ladies saw this new documentary ‘Blackfish’ which aired on CNN last month. The controversial film tells the story of Tilikum, an orca probably responsible for the death of three trainers at Seaworld, and it presents a very convincing case that these animals were not made to be kept in captivity for our entertainment. Orca are very intelligent animals with a very complex emotional life, just like us, and it’s obvious that this animal, separated at 2 from his mother and put in captivity with two other female orcas which abused him, had all the reasons to kill humans. And this is where you realize that these trainings are totally abusive:

‘While living at Sealand of the Pacific Tilikum and the other orcas were taught behaviors using a punishment system. If Tilikum the young inexperienced whale, fresh from the ocean got a behavior wrong all of the whales were punished by not being feed. This practice increased the tension between the whales since the other females figured out Tilikum was the reason they were not being fed. Thus their bullying of him continued.’ Logically, Tilikum became really aggressive against humans whereas there is not one single report of an orca attacking humans in the wild.

I haven’t seen the whole documentary, I am still traumatized after watching this other movie entitled ‘The Cove’, which was denouncing the killing of dolphins by Japanese fishermen (and the capture of the youngs too), so the bloody beating of Tilikum was too much to endure.

But back to the Barenaked Ladies, this is what they posted on their Facebook page:

‘Hey everybody. We’ve talked things over, and decided not to play at Seaworld at this time. We watch movies too, ya know! Have you seen Star Trek IV? It’s quite good. Kidding… We sometimes do that.

This is a complicated issue, and we don’t claim to understand all of it, but we don’t feel comfortable proceeding with the gig at this time. The Seaworld folks have been gracious, and extended us invitations to the park to learn more about what they do, and how they do it.

We encourage anybody and everybody to get involved with a charity organization they feel passionate about. We here at Barenaked Ladies have made a decision based on what we feel. It’s not about money, or petitions, or press… But it is about our fans. We listen to them, and they’re important to us. Their sensibilities resonate with ours, and have for decades now. We’ve grown up together. Ultimately though, we made the decision that WE feel good about.

Thanks for all of your support. We’ll see you all at a mutually agreeable concert venue in the near future!

Love

Barenaked Ladies’

Actually, they seem to be more influenced by their fans than anything else, since their fans had launched an online petition asking them to cancel the show scheduled for February 15th 2014. Whatever, it’s a good thing they have decided to boycott Seaworld, despite the fact they are not going to hurt Seaworld very much. But at a time when Morrissey rightly complains about the slaughter of millions of turkeys, Willie Nelson and the other artists should cancel too.

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