Subject: Re: OCRA/Captivity:SEATTLE TIMES EDITORIAL (fwd)
Wed, 5 Mar 1997 15:17:21 -0500 (EST)

In a message dated 97-03-05 09:29:14 EST, (Michael
Williamson) writes:

<< We in the Northwest be-
 lieve the world would benefit from leaving orcas and other
 whales to roam the oceans.  >>

However, would the whales? Everyone is quick to say, "The open ocean is much
healthier for these animals than a tank," but then they forget the oil
spills, the toxic chemicals, and the other evils. (Case in point -- Belugas
in the St. Lawrence.) Just which is truly better for the whales and dolphins
of the world? With the way mankind has been treating the oceans, the answer
has become rather obscured. 

I can speak for no one else when I say that I would rather see a species
*existing* within a carefully-contrived tank than washing up dead along a
shoreline. If the animals can give birth to young, have those calves mature,
and then have those calves beget new animals, I think that captivity is a
necessity. At least then we can mention the captive animals and say, "Look.
This is what we must preserve in the open oceans." If the oceans were healthy
and mankind were wise enough to keep his harpoons locked away, captivity
wouldn't even necessary!

I am a 16-year-old girl looking for a career in the Cetacean Biological
fields. I have been writing speeches, papers, and giving talks in school
concerning the importance of taking care of the animals in the wild and in
captivity. I would not have such an interest in the welfare of any marine
mammals anywhere if it weren't for that fateful day at Sea World when I was
seven years old.

Clear Skies and Seas,