When Are We Going To Shut These God-Awful Marine Mammal Prisons Down?
A Brief Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper
Posted July 20th, 2021 on Niagara At Large
How damn sad the latest Canadian Press news story is about the conditions aquatic animals are reportedly enduring at Marineland in Niagara Falls, Ontario.
Then again, I feel just as sad as I wonder.. How many of you out there give a damn? Let’s be honest after all of these almost seven decades this amusement park has been in operation, with all the concerns raised, over and over again, about the condition of marine mammals there.
How many of you really do?
Much to the many reasons that lead to my demise in journalism at Niagara newspapers, I started writing about questions and concerns around the Marineland park in Niagara Falls and the ethics around keeping mammals like whales, dolphins and seals there for our amusement, in cement ponds filed with chlorinated water, going back to at least the late 1980s, when I was still working as an environment reporter at The St. Catharines Standard.
There was always a segment of the population that felt these great mammals should be left to live their lives in their natural ocean environments, and do not belong in amusement parks like Marineland. An all-to-small portion of them would hold demonstrations every year in front of Marineland’s gates.
The remainder of the population apparently didn’t give a shit or was among those who filled Marineland’s giant parking lot every day of the summer season, and shelled out big bucks to get through the park’s gates for the splashy whale and dolphin shows.
I have always been afraid that those shelling out good money to watch these great mammals amusement is where too much of humanity (if one can even call it that) is at.
So now, here we are, with a story in the Canadian Press and gone national on CBC and other Canadian media outlets that an Ontario animal welfare body has concluded that water quality conditions for marine mammals at Marineland have become poor enough to raise even more concerns for the animals.
How much more do we need to know before we collectively stop patronizing these places with our good money and push to have our governments shut them down?
If anyone wonders why this reporter is rapidly coming to the conclusion that it is a waste of time going on trying to report on this and other issues, including the climate catastrophes too few seem to give a damn about, I submit this as one of the reasons.
What in hell is the point?
Doug Draper, Niagara At Large
Click on the following to read the reports on this latest news around the potential trouble for marine mammals at the Marineland site –
For information about a film about the Marineland situation that was aired on CBC’s The Nature of Things earlier this year, click on – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2021/02/24/the-last-walrus-a-film-exploring-the-issues-around-a-last-walrus-at-the-captive-animal-fun-park-marineland-in-niagara-falls-ontario-to-premier-on-cbcs/ .
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