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Op-Ed: Former SeaWorld Ad Writer’s Anguish post Blackfish

November 5, 2013

An amazingly talented woman who once created major advertising and public relations campaigns for SeaWorld is having a drastic change of heart. After viewing the documentary film Blackfish, Cara Wilson-Granat will no longer list SeaWorld as a former client on her resume, but instead seeks healing as she prays to right the wrongs of the past… and the present. The California based author and inspirational speaker submitted an op-ed to The Orca Project and we are pleased to present it to you here… in her words:

San Diego, California – Years ago when I was a copywriter for an advertising agency in Los Angeles, one of my favorite accounts was writing for SeaWorld. I could barely contain my joy writing the ads, radio and TV spots that touted the “touching experience” of SeaWorld. Oh the delight I felt when I first met Shamu and was able to experience a world of magnificent marine mammals supposedly there for the edification of humans to see the sea wonders up close. A devout animal-lover, I thought (as did most of the creative team) I was participating in the preservation of Orcas seemingly delighting in this magical environment of hands-on trainers soaring through the choreographed acts with them. Oh how very wrong I was. And oh how deeply ashamed I am today for being a part of this vile travesty. I never knew or saw SeaWorld in the truest sense. I bought the lie…

Documentary film BLACKFISH

Documentary film BLACKFISH

Today, I can no longer remain silent in my fury and anguish after just viewing the extraordinary documentary, Blackfish, which reveals the profound cruelty of Orcas, primarily those at SeaWorld. This is a film that must be seen by the world because it uncovers that which most of us never knew nor wanted to believe, that these “happy” whales flipping and breaching on command are indeed, miserable, highly stressed, sickly, going insane, deeply grieving, separated from their natural habitats, their familiar pods—babies and mothers screaming for each other, all isolated in cruel and abusive ways that are unfathomable. We can no longer sit by nor support this immoral madness and applaud in delight. It would be no different than cheering on the destruction of life itself.

I can’t contain the massive sorrow that I feel right now knowing that those brilliant mammals, with complex brains, languages and family structures equal to and even superior to humans, are living out their brief lives so horrendously. All because of greed under the umbrella of “family entertainment”—making fat the coffers of the SeaWorld corporation and destroying these gentle beings before our very eyes. When left alone we are learning, Orcas never kill or attack humans; they live long lives in close-knit family bonds—vocalizing in unique ways of communicating in distinct languages that we’re only now beginning to understand. This is true for dolphins as well.

There is absolutely no reason for marine mammals—especially Orcas and dolphins—to be kept in captivity such as the circus-like watery prisons of SeaWorld. In a recent article by Naomi A. Rose, Ph.D., marine mammal scientist for the Animal Welfare Institute, Dr. Rose explained that she’s part of a team working with Merlin Entertainments Group creating the very first sanctuary for captive bottlenose dolphins. For over 20 years now she has been advocating this very same solution for the welfare of captive whales and dolphins as well.

SeaWorld Today

…and so must the featureless pools

If SeaWorld and other marine theme parks were to work with enlightened marine scientists and animal behaviorists, like Dr. Rose to transform their worlds into safe and beautiful marine sanctuaries this would definitely be a win-win for all. People would show up to view the Orcas from a distance—either through video cams, full-screens projected around the park, animated, and 3D presentations narrated by humans talking about the animals but not in any way interfering nor interacting with them in intrusive ways.

And the Orcas wouldn’t be separated from their original pods, their sanctuaries would be spacious and as close to their natural habitats as possible; and all would only cared for by veterinarians and hands-off care-givers—leaving these beautiful mammals to live their lives peacefully until the blessed day when they are completely free to be in their worlds separate from ours.

Today, many wildlife preserves (like San Diego’s Wild Animal Park) are wisely putting humans in trams to view the animals in their “natural” habitats from a safe distance. Unfortunately, the world is encroaching on almost every species putting most of them on the endangered lists because of poaching, deforestation, wars, starvation, global warming, etc. Zoos are evolving into educational, conservation-consciously safe harbors for the last of so many breeds. These top wild life sanctuaries and zoos are leaving the animals to be animals—in cage-free environments—without having to perform like puppets for the “entertainment” of crowds.

Cara Wilson-Granat

Author/Speaker Cara Wilson-Granat

It takes courage and humility to admit that what one is doing is wrong and hurtful and the most compassionate and wise path is one that takes the higher ground; in SeaWorld’s case—the safer waters. It’s not too late to re-do, start-over, do what is best. They would be far more popular than ever if they did. The world is watching. But if they are sticking to their stance that SeaWorld is educationally sound then what they’re teaching is that cruelty and greed are all that matter. There are former trainers who have admitted that Blackfish has only scratched the service of the horror behind-the-scenes at SeaWorld. I can’t even go there in my mind.

I do believe that there are good and compassionate people at SeaWorld who genuinely love those animals with all their hearts and would die for them to protect them in any way possible. The tragic death of SeaWorld trainer, Dawn Brancheau in 2010 should have been the deciding moment when everything came to a halt and all of those animal welfare/animal rights advocates were acknowledged for what they were saying: NO ORCAS SHOULD BE IN CAPTIVITY. This dedicated trainer who loved those animals with a passion had no idea what she was in for swimming in waters with a whale who was so emotionally and physically mistreated.

Right now I have removed SeaWorld from the list of clients on my resume. That doesn’t negate the fact that I once believed in the fantasy that they wanted us all to believe. To say I’m ashamed to have ever been associated with them is an understatement. I will forever carry the guilt I feel now in knowing I chose to look the other way for the sake of advertising. There aren’t enough “I’m sorry…forgive me” words to assuage my pain. But now that I know the reality I’m praying this corporation and others worldwide will realize that once they relinquish their devastating control and treat these magnificent mammals the way we all wish to be treated, then love not fear is what results. Every. Single. Time.

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”– Socrates

~ Cara Wilson-Granat, Author/Inspirational Speaker

About Cara

Cara Wilson-Granat is a professional speaker and writer/author located in San Diego, California.

She has been a copywriter (TV, radio, print) for award-winning accounts in Los Angeles, Monterey and Sacramento and has created major advertising and public relations campaigns for clients such as The Tropicana Hotel, L.A. County Fair, Hilton Hotels, Princess Cruises, Tibor Rudas Organization (Superstar Theater), Monterey Museum of Art, CTB/McGraw-Hill and many others in the health, education, art, business, technical, family, retail, building, hospitality, entertainment and non-profit fields.

Although she enjoyed her time as a copywriter she is now loving her new career as a full-time author and speaker.

Be sure to check out Cara’s latest works which recreate orcas in captivity. Amazing!! See her incredible work HERE.

81 Comments leave one →
  1. March 18, 2016 4:22 pm

    I have cried for days over Tilikums illness, I can not believe that after Black fish there has been no improvement for Tilikums horrific conditions. I am not surprised he is dying after all Sea World DOES NOT CARE ABOUT ANY OF HIS ANIMALS. IF YOU DON’T BELIEVE ME DO THE RESEARCH I HAVE DONE MINE. THE VIDEOS OF KILIKUMS ABUSE TELL THE TRUTH ABOUT SEA WORLD THEY ARE EVIL!

    • June 24, 2017 4:39 pm

      I’ll tell you whats evil. People who are COMPLETELY uneducated smearing the image of one of the best zoological institution in the world, people who spew lies from emotion alone, people who criticize the best efforts to save animals, and people who do nothing to help wild animals; but would rather become activists and criticize those who do.

      SeaWorld is not evil, they have done nothing but good for animals. Your simply to corrupted to see it. Please, go do research on some other platform than Blackfish and PETA.

      • Teresa Wagner permalink
        June 24, 2017 6:10 pm

        What’s evil is intentionally forcing the ocean’s apex predator to live in a concrete pool and do tricks for the public so a corporation can make money.

  2. Gerry Nobes permalink
    February 24, 2015 6:45 pm

    We love Sea world of Orlando, the love and care that is given to the mammals and birds is outstanding, You have so much negative remarks, but what about the stranded mammals, do you come and take care of them. Give Sea world credit they are out there helping , in fact just yesterday there was a group of Manatees caught in a sewer, where you there??? No, Sea World was, you people should get a real job and come to work for caring of animals in this fine park instead of finding so much fault look for the good things
    Bob & Gerry Nobes

  3. Celine permalink
    September 25, 2014 8:14 am

    I’m happy that people change their mind on the Seaworld entertainment show. I’ve been at Seaworld but didn’t see the show. I saw one in Miami and remember well my feeling of sadness and unease after. I could not understand why animals were left in these tiny areas. I’ve seen Blackfish last week, and I was shocked and feeling bad for their conditions of living. I’ve gone to see the Facebook page of Seaworld today, people saying we love you, it makes me sad, these people don’t notice there’s something wrong? What happened in 2010 in front of the audience is horrible and stresses the psychological damage on Tilikum and other orcas. It must have shocked people for the rest of their life, and children saw it, but people are still going, it’s sad. Anyway, I have hope since more and more people have consciousness of nature preservation.

  4. September 21, 2014 4:29 pm

    That was very well written Mrs. Cara, and thank you for standing up for these beautiful mammals. I completely condemn Sea World and any other park where Orca’s are in captivity or people who have been capturing them, they belong in the wild with their families and where they can eat when they are good and damn ready to. They deserve to live the long lives that they are intended to live. I just hope that we can all put an end having Orca’s in captivity and keep them from becoming psychologically damaged. The minds of these beautiful and special beings are superior to that of any man, and they should be left to live their own personal, complex lives.

  5. Alison Roberts permalink
    January 6, 2014 8:21 pm

    I just saw “Blackfish,” and i cried through almost the whole thing. After I saw it I am going to try and encourage everyone I know to not support SeaWorld. These poor innocent creatures… I never even thought much on what goes on and how they live. In the future I hope I can do more to help let loose these beautiful animals. I really do hope and pray that SeaWorld will go out of business very soon. It is very selfish on what people will do just for entertainment and money. Sham on those of you who don’t give a damn about this!

  6. December 7, 2013 3:02 pm

    I was only about 5 when I saw my first whale in captivity. I fell in love with these amazing creatures. I saw Tilikum twice in Canada and I saw Keiko multiple times in Oregon. I had never really liked the idea of them being enclosed in small areas but the documentary Blackfish is what truly opened my eyes. I will NEVER go to SeaWorld or any other aquarium to view these animals. I cringe when I view photos online of Tilikums housing in Canada. As a little girl it didn’t seem so small. NOW I am appalled at his and other whales living conditions. What animal wouldn’t have issues from being enclosed in a dark container for hours and hours. It is so sad to me. 😦 Considering the way they have to live I am actually surprised there are not more trainer deaths. Apparently the whale is more forgiving of mistreatment than we humans are!

    • March 18, 2016 4:27 pm

      Thank you. We need to help all the animals that are been killed at Sea World!

  7. December 6, 2013 12:19 pm

    Blackfish has been on my mind since I saw it when it premiered on CNN last month. After I watched the film, I bought the book, Death at SeaWorld, because I wanted to know more. I remember going to see these shows as a kid and thinking they were silly. Now I know that it is SeaWorld that portrays these animals as silly when in reality they are really quite evolved emotionally, perhaps more evolved than us. It breaks my heart to think of poor Tilikum spending his days motionless and isolated in a concrete prison. But if we’re on this site, then we all pretty much share the same feelings, and I really logged in to share that I showed this documentary to my niece and nephew (ages 8 and 11). Their responses were so encouraging. They thought SeaWorld was horrible and they said they never wanted to go to SeaWorld, they added that the whales should be free and with their families. Their generation will be the ones to put an end to these aquatic circuses. I hope.

  8. jmventre permalink
    November 23, 2013 11:54 pm

    I love this article. Thank you TOP for your ongoing dedication to Tilikum, Lolita and all the captives, as well as their wild counterparts. The Orca Project’s contributions to Death at SeaWorld, Blackfish, VOTO and the public are gigantic and appreciated. Thank you.

  9. November 10, 2013 8:37 pm

    I too fell for the SW myth, still remember the childhood tingle of excitement at watching a show. BlackFish was so moving for me and hit so close to home. My father treated a young orca named Miracle. She went on to “perform” for SeaLand in BC. Even before her death she had begun to display neurotic stereotypical behaviors such as striking her head repeatedly. She drowned in the nets less than a year later. Tragically this led to the use of the metal shipping containers to keep Tllikum and the others “safe” from the nets. The story began with miracle…all my father’s effort to save that whale. Tillikum’s earlier years spent in seclusion that later influenced all the other tragic events. Blackfish was far too close to home for me.

    • November 10, 2013 8:51 pm

      Blessings to you and your father Beth. And to Miracle’s soul. We will live to see this end. Together we will empty the seats and get the whales to sea pens and laws to prevent any more whales being in captivity.

      • January 8, 2014 10:35 pm

        I watched Blackfish tonight, stupefied by shock and horror throughout the movie. I had no idea. As the ending credits rolled, my tears began (yeah, me, too, Allison). I cried for about an hour afterwards, my brain screaming, “What can I do?”

        I live in Atlanta, Georgia, where our brand new aquarium (funded, in large part, by Bernie Marcus – founder of Home Depot) downplayed the death of two of its two whales soon after it opened, before we Atlantans got a chance to know the place (or the whales) well. I spoke out against the exhibit to the guide on my first day there. And so you know, I looked it up after the movie: Atlanta has the largest aquarium in the world.

        What can we do that will make a difference? After ‘Blackfish,’ I can’t do nothing. My email is ‘’ for any of us who are impacted want to help end aquatic animal captivity. I’ll think of SOMETHING; check my email for ideas from my brainstorming, and let me know what you think.

        “Believe” is the motto of Sea World. Well, I ‘Believe’ we can make a difference. So let’s.

    • November 10, 2013 8:55 pm

      What a painful story, Beth. I really hope you write more about this and share it with others as you have shared it with me on this site. Devastating close-up of what you and your father experienced. The more the world knows of this the more fodder we have to hopefully transform the lives of these whales–and all other captive species. This is tremendously sad–so wrenching. I encourage you to write what you know and remember and then share it with The Orca Project and others. Thank you so much for taking the time to tell this. My heart goes out to you…

      • November 10, 2013 8:58 pm

        Let’s pray for a Miracle in honor of Miracle. Lighting a candle tonight….

  10. Darlene Jackson Marmol permalink
    November 10, 2013 6:24 pm

    Thank you for writing this. I have been grieving for our Orcas since viewing the film and before. I want to do more to help. You have put a voice to the hole in my heart.

    • November 10, 2013 8:08 pm

      Thank you, Darlene. When I wrote that letter I, too, had to find a way to do something about “the hole in my heart” after seeing Blackfish and knowing a truth I couldn’t ever fathom. When we do something in the direction of positive change, no matter how tiny the effort, the ripple effect grows. You’ll do more to help. You already are doing it…

  11. November 10, 2013 6:21 pm

    I invite you to do the same thing the former trainers did in the closing scene of Blackfish. Come here to western Washington in the summer and spend time with our Southern Resident Killer Whales. See them living in freedom. It will set your heart free..

    • November 10, 2013 8:10 pm

      I have family living in that part of the world and have witnessed the joy and beauty of those whales living in freedom. I hold strong to that vision and it does “set my heart free.” Thank you so much, Jim.

    • Claire permalink
      December 4, 2013 10:13 am

      @Jim – That is the first thing I wanted to do upon watching Blackfish and it is my lifelong mission to save up and come out to see them in the Wild. I am trying to pass the message on to as many people as possible but they really need to see the film to appreciate the severity of it. Keep up the good work Cara

  12. Gina McBride permalink
    November 10, 2013 4:50 pm

    I sincerely hope that the guilt you carry in your heart will be replaced by the courage that you so obviously have. I write about orcas and dolphins often, and one thing that I hope is that this, the 30th anniversary of the day that Tillicum was captured and became a slave of a different species, that Tillicum’s story, and that the movie, “Blackfish” will bring about a change in conscience and that one day, we will look back at this and realize just how barbaric our acts were. I hope that he is the catalyst of this change so that his life, miserable as it is, will be worthwhile for other orcas, and for humans as well. Thank you for the heartfelt testimonial, and for removing that blinders that we were all issued, and wore without realizing we were wearing them at all.

    • November 10, 2013 6:09 pm

      Beautifully expressed, Gina. Thank you for your perspective and heartfelt commentary. Yes, if we continue to wear blinders we remain blind. It’s time to truly “see” Sea World and all the other entertainment prisons profiting from the enslavement of all species–including orcas and dolphins. I believe that together we can come up with an enlightened solution to create positive change. It doesn’t happen over night, but it does happen. And it will.And I too pray that Tillicum’s tragic life won’t be in vein. But we will learn from him and all the others how to live with these magnificent beings without causing their demise nor that of the humans who loved them so much. Let’s keep on envisioning and working for positive transformation. Thank you again!

  13. November 8, 2013 1:39 am

    Thank you Ms. Wilson-Granat! Wise and beautiful words!

    • November 8, 2013 12:05 pm

      Thank you, Anita! Much appreciated! Please share them with others. It takes a village…!

  14. November 7, 2013 6:52 pm

    WOOOOO HOOOOOOOO! God Bless you Cara! Thank you and I can’t wait to see your creative work help the whales! Let’s empty those seats and get the whales back in the ocean. THANK YOU!

    • November 7, 2013 9:34 pm

      Thank you so much, Teresa!!!!! Together we can do this!!!!

  15. November 7, 2013 6:03 pm

    God Bless you Cara. I watched Blackfish and could not believe what I saw. Stealing these beautiful creatures out their natural environment to have them do circus tricks in a cement pool just broke my heart. I feel so powerless, and cant understand why this allowed to happen in the first place, let alone have this cruelty continue. How very, very sad. I pray things change and one day this kind of abuse is a thing of the past.

    • November 8, 2013 1:29 am

      With all of us praying for the same outcome for these precious beings I have hope that we’ll be able to transform their lives. Yes, change must happen. Now! Thank you, Michelle!

  16. tahir permalink
    November 7, 2013 1:41 pm

    God bless you for doing the right thing. I am interested in learning more about the sanctuary for dolphins and whales. Also am wondering if anyone knows if the New England Aquarium in Boston supports holding God’s beautiful creatures in captivity; if you or anyone here has any info would be appreciated. Thank you for standing up.

    • November 7, 2013 3:39 pm

      Thank you, Tahir! I checked with a top marine mammal specialist and he gives the New England Aquarium in Boston a huge thumb’s down for dolphins. Sad. It’s worldwide. We need to make changes universally for these precious beings. Keep reading, learning, studying–the Internet is a gold mine of knowledge. Start with The Orca Project and they’ll guide you in the right direction. Don’t give up!

      • November 8, 2013 12:12 pm

        Tahir, please note what Christine M. Melton (here on this page) has commented about the New England Aquarium. With the exception of the seal show there it sounds like this aquarium is very enlightened and doing the right thing… Very encouraging!

    • Christine M. Melton permalink
      November 8, 2013 8:32 am

      The New England Aquarium dolphin show was discontinued sometime in the late 80’s or early 90’s . Now, the aquarium supports a whale watch and marine sanctuary where visitors can view the marine mammals in their natural habitat (a rich feeding ground about 30 miles East of Boston Harbor). The animals do not do tricks! However, the aquarium does still have a trained seal show.

      • November 8, 2013 9:32 am

        Cudos to them for stopping dolphin shows, but the seals should be released.

        • November 8, 2013 12:09 pm

          Yes, the seal show gotta go! Enough with performing animals. Let them be!

        • December 20, 2013 4:35 pm

          The seals cannot be released. All seals received today are rehab animals who cannot return to the wild or were born in captivity and would not be able to hunt. And they do not really perform. They get their teeth brushed, they wave, and they play around. That’s the show today. The Sea World-like sea lion show was discontinued in 2008ish.

      • November 8, 2013 12:08 pm

        Very heartening to know this, Christine! I hope you let others know about this as an example of what is working for these beautiful mammals. I thank you so much for sharing this. I’ll share this information as well!Thank you so much.

  17. November 7, 2013 1:40 am

    Hi Cara,
    I too am a San Diego resident. It makes me sick that these poor orcas live minutes away from my house and that I have to look at SeaWorld signs everywhere I go. I applaud you for writing this article.

    • November 7, 2013 10:04 am

      Hi “Neighbor”! Yes, we have to let everyone know that Sea World is a NO SHOW. Thank you for tapping in, Julian. Much appreciated knowing I have a kindred spirit nearby….

  18. anagirlempath permalink
    November 6, 2013 8:34 pm

    Reblogged this on #CyberWhaleWarrior and commented:
    This article from The Orca Project moved me to tears. An ad copywriter who worked on SeaWorld commercials now regrets her work, and will no longer list the abusement park on her resume. CHANGE IS AFOOT — #Blackfish is awakening the hearts and minds of many, and brings such profound hope to those of us campaigning so vigorously against the keeping of cetacea in captivity.

  19. Jeana Partington permalink
    November 6, 2013 7:14 pm

    You didn’t know what you didn’t know – none of us did. I agree with Tiff – don’t be so hard on yourself. I watched the movie Blackfish several days ago and I still can’t get it out of my head and heart. I’m distressed right now thinking about it! The Orca Project now has a new, expanded group of supporters to advocate for these magnificent sea mammals. I have already forwarded the link to The Orca Project to several friends and family, encouraging them to watch encore presentations of Blackfish, and to boycott Sea World. I want to do more! Please advise how I can be even more involved in this important work.

    • November 6, 2013 9:23 pm

      Jeana, thank you so much for contacting me with your kind words. I’m new at this as well and all I can say is stay in contact with The Orca Project and have them guide us to do what we can. Also there are many other marine mammal organizations worldwide who are fighting Sea World and other captive orcas and dolphins. We’re up against a huge force and need to keep sharing our feelings and passion about saving these extraordinary beings.Don’t give up!!!! Thank you so much again–

  20. akismet-3e142415bedef2658717ae40a9fdf5b0 permalink
    November 6, 2013 3:27 pm

    Your confessional moved me to tears. I am sure that if it is possible for a killer whale to forgive a human for the indignities thrust upon it, you are forgiven. You were misled, as we all were, by a selfish and greedy group of people who have no real sympathy for, or empathy with, the majestic and sentient beings, true aliens among us, whom they imprison for profit alone.

    • November 6, 2013 4:12 pm

      And you moved ME to tears. The thought of being forgiven by a killer whale wrenches my heart. I can only pray and hope this is so. Thank you with all my heart for sharing and caring so deeply. Together we CAN and WILL make a difference…

  21. Christina permalink
    November 6, 2013 2:52 pm

    This is beautiful and I am in tears! Thank you for speaking your truth, this is more of what we need to fight this battle right now & to persuade people to stop supporting Seaworld. I’m floored & grateful for your speaking out!

    • November 6, 2013 4:15 pm

      Thank you so very much, Christina. As we all continue to express our deepest feelings about these magical beings in the hopes of seeing them live the lives they so deserve together we can and will change their worlds–and ours for the better….

  22. November 6, 2013 12:05 pm

    Thank you Cara. I hope all that read this and who are passionate about freedom for orcas and dolphins will also advocate for elephants in zoos and circuses. Their lives are just as miserable. They live in cramped spaces, way too small for the world’s largest land mammal, they suffer from joint and foot disease, which is often fatal, and they pace and bob all day, stereotypical behavior that is caused by extreme emotional stress. In circuses they are beaten to perform and even in zoos, bullhooks are used to manage them. It is time to move beyond our insistence on keeping wild exotic animals such as orcas and elephants in captivity. It is time at last for them to be free. Release the orcas to their home the sea when possible and send the elephants to sanctuary.

    • November 6, 2013 12:28 pm

      I so agree, Courtney! I have an equal passion for all animals, especially elephants and my lifelong hatred for circuses…. I know all too well what you’re speaking about, believe me. Elephants share the same heart as dolphins and whales and they’re being equally emotionally and physically destroyed daily. I’m praying that with all the attention Blackfish and The Cove are receiving that the world will focus on ALL captive animals and do what must happen now. Sometimes I become completely immobilized in my pain for these magnificent beings. But it takes all of us–step-by-step, letter-by-letter, to help move this mountain. And I do believe it will be moved. Thank you for your caring and compassion. Please continue to share it with the world…

  23. November 6, 2013 11:44 am

    This is a beautiful, immensely brave piece. Try not to be so hard on yourself. By sharing your experience and thereby educating others you are undoing any negativity you may have contributed to.

    • November 6, 2013 11:59 am

      Very heartening, Tiffany Rose. Thank you for your kind perspective. Much, much appreciated.

  24. November 6, 2013 11:01 am

    Here’s a great article from our friend Elizabeth Batt at Digital Journal
    “Op-Ed: Bombed by Blackfish, fallout continues for SeaWorld”
    with more letters and feedback from the public after watching Blackfish.

    • November 6, 2013 11:57 am

      Excellent op-ed! Some powerful points, including the fact that children visit dinosaur museums and there are no existing dinosaurs around. They don’t have to touch or experience the real thing in order to still receive the impact, the knowledge of them. Thank you for sharing Ms. Batt’s excellent article!

  25. Laura permalink
    November 6, 2013 6:30 am

    Thank you for sharing this with the world, articles like this alongside ‘Blackfish’, ‘The Cove’ etc are getting the message across to more and more people now. Thank you Cara for not shying away from your past, but for speaking out and sharing your experience and knowledge with everyone.

  26. Viivi Syrja permalink
    November 6, 2013 2:02 am

    During my days of active anti-dolphinarium campaigning days, I often ran into the questions; “Where would the animals go? Who would rehab them back into the wild? How much and who would pay for it?” In words of one of my heros Mr. Doug Cartlidge, UK, I would like to remind that it should be the responsability of these facilities to finance all RESPONSIBLE rehabs, releases and follow-ups. After all, Seaworld et al stole these animals from the sea and have earned millions upon millions (including our taxdollars, as in my country) out of their slavetrade for decades. All the anticaptivity campaigners that I know of, have more or less financed their campaigns from their own pockets and time, loss of lives even. We need to make Sea World pay for their mess, …now!

  27. November 6, 2013 12:58 am

    Thank you!

  28. November 5, 2013 10:48 pm

    It’s never too late to change, right? Together we can do this!!!! Thank you for your belief in the positive outcome. It gives me faith to know that there are people like you who are feeling as passionate about the plight of these great beings–and all animals. I believe that together we can do much good. It is my abiding hope that this is so…

    • November 5, 2013 11:13 pm

      It will be so! Thank you so much Cara for sharing your story with us. Today alone, your words have already reached thousands of caring individuals and will undoubtedly reach thousands more. This is not the end. It is only the beginning.
      Our very best, and many thanks, C & J @ The Orca Project

  29. November 5, 2013 10:08 pm

    Hi Cara (and Orca Project Supporters),
    I thought you’d like to see what some fellow San Diego residents have also done in response to learning about this issue. These students are from Point Loma High School and they’ve made a video called Dear Sea World.

    Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

    Best Regards,

    • November 5, 2013 10:36 pm

      Thank you so very much, Vicky! I am very touched by what the Point Loma High School students created in response to what Sea World is doing to their captive animals. I pray that Sea World truly not only “sees” it but hears it and feels it and ultimately changes to do what is morally right in every way. With all of us working together conspiring for the good I do believe our efforts will ultimately outweigh the evil and injustice already done to these precious beings. Please thank all the students for me for taking the time to create this important video. I applaud them all! And thank you for calling this to my attention. I’m greatly moved by it…
      Warmest wishes,

  30. Tip Burrows permalink
    November 5, 2013 8:54 pm

    Bless you for having the courage you have shown in writing this article. No one will condemn you for your past; you are surely not the first person to be duped by Seaworld and their ilk. This is a powerful piece of writing, emotional yes, but also factual and not hysterical. I believe if more Seaworld staff and supporters would actually take the time to watch Blackfish, and do some reading (I just finished Death at Seaworld), they might also realize the wrong they have been doing. Thank you again.

    • November 5, 2013 10:40 pm

      Thank YOU, Tip! Much appreciated. So wonderful knowing we’re all working together to get the word out and hopefully right this horrendous wrong. Your words touched me greatly.

  31. November 5, 2013 8:30 pm

    “There are former trainers who have admitted that Blackfish has only scratched the service of the horror behind-the-scenes at SeaWorld.” This quote pretty much sums it up. Thank you for writing this article. The more and more of the TRUTH that people learn about the amazing orcas, they will see the only place for them is their true home, the ocean.

  32. November 5, 2013 6:57 pm

    Great article, except for the Merlin Entertainments part which was acquired by Blackstone, owners of SeaWorld, in 2005. I don’t know about Dr. Rose’s work, but I’d be highly suspicious of anything to do with SeaWorld. Pity the author did not research this further and provide full disclosure of the relationship between Merline and SeaWorld in this post.

    • November 5, 2013 10:41 pm

      Not that Dr. Naomi Rose requires any defending, but we feel it is important to note that her life’s passion has been for the welfare of orcas and dolphins. You can click on the links contained in this article to learn more, or better yet, read David Kirby’s “Death at SeaWorld” and you will have a clear understanding of her life’s work. Crossing party lines (as it may appear)… or better yet, working with the other parties only further shows her commitment to doing what is best for the cetaceans in captivity.
      As far as Cara not researching things further… that is not her responsibility. She has made tremendous strides in her thinking in a relatively short time following viewing Blackfish and has expressed the sentiments of many who also had prior connections with SeaWorld.
      The Orca Project stands behind both of these women- in their actions, their compassion and devotion. Perform a little research on either and we’re sure you’ll reach the same conclusion.

  33. November 5, 2013 6:56 pm

    $eaWorld was a good concept at first when they were strictly rescuing marine life, then GREED took over. If you want good information, visit

  34. Sandra Seary permalink
    November 5, 2013 6:36 pm

    Ric O’Barry previously worked with and trained dolphins for the Flipper TV series many years ago. He now works 24/7 to free them from marine parks and to stop the murder at The Cove. We have all been guilty in the past of thinking (or perhaps not stopping to think) that they were happy. It is not true. Same with animal circuses (haven’t we all been there ?), rides on animals in captivity, zoos ( the majority of animals live in areas far too small and enclosed for them. Things need to change. We do not own these animals any more than they own us. We are all on this earth as equals. Why should we think we are in charge to do as we wish? Time is running out for elephants, rhinos, orang-utans and many more. We must all join together now and do something xxx

    • Amber permalink
      November 5, 2013 6:53 pm

      If you haven’t already I recommend reading his book behind the Dolphin Smile.

    • November 5, 2013 10:43 pm

      Yes, we must definitely do everything we can together to call attention to the plight of ALL the animals on our planet who are suffering. Our “joining together” is what will move the mountain–pebble-by-pebble. But change does and will happen as we stay focused on this united vision of harmony and peace and protection and love for them all….

  35. anonhuman person permalink
    November 5, 2013 4:40 pm

    Great article & important information to get out but definitely not trusting Merlin Entertainments/SeaLife spin thru the world of marine mammal conservation. Their trust says in big bold letters BREED & they are afterall snapping up & managing hundreds of dolphin shows throughout the world. They kinda remind me of SeaWorld for some strange reason….could it be that Merlin Entertainments is a subsidiary of Blackstone?

    • November 5, 2013 7:08 pm

      I will look into Merlin Entertainment. I was hoping that, they too, were turning themselves around to work with enlightened scientists and marine biologists to change their circus perspective and ultimately free the orcas and dolphins from their present enslavement. This is very upsetting. Thank you for calling this to my attention!

    • November 5, 2013 8:14 pm

      Not that Dr. Naomi Rose requires any defending, but we feel it is important to note that her life’s passion has been for the welfare of orcas and dolphins. You can click on the links contained in this article to learn more, or better yet, read David Kirby’s “Death at SeaWorld” and you will have a clear understanding of her life’s work. Crossing party lines (as it may appear)… or better yet, working with the other parties only further shows her commitment to doing what is best for the cetaceans in captivity.
      As far as Cara not researching things further… that is not her responsibility. She has made tremendous strides in her thinking in a relatively short time following viewing Blackfish and has expressed the sentiments of many who also had prior connections with SeaWorld.
      The Orca Project stands behind both of these women- in their actions, their compassion and devotion. Perform a little research on either and we’re sure you’ll reach the same conclusion.

  36. Andrea Bosiger permalink
    November 5, 2013 4:17 pm

    You said it all so eloquently when you said “We can no longer sit by nor support this immoral madness and applaud in delight. It would be no different than cheering on the destruction of life itself.” Thank you

  37. Cyn Cribbs permalink
    November 5, 2013 3:55 pm

    Thank you for speaking out now and telling the world what you discovered. Many of us fell for the lies that SeaWorld fed us. We were mystified by these magnificent animals and wanted to believe they were happy. Now that we know differently it is our responsibility to them to get them released out of captivity and into a life where they will truly be happy and healthy.


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