Target: Greg Creed, CEO of Taco Bell
Goal: Stop the abuse of beautiful, intelligent orcas living in captivity
As many animal lovers know, life for orcas and other members of the dolphin family in captivity is inhumane and includes an early death sentence. With summer just around the corner, amusement parks and sea life exhibitions have begun enticing consumers to pay them a visit. Taco Bell has a hand in this, and is offering customers a discount on SeaWorld tickets. SeaWorld and facilities like it are painted as a place for family fun and unity where families can connect with sea creatures, and sharing the wonder of marine mammals with their children seems like a harmless and positive experience to many parents. Sadly, a large portion of the population is not informed about the reality of the situation for these animals.
Life for marine mammals in SeaWorld is inhumane for several reasons. Orcas feel strong emotions and develop deep social bonds with their families, from whom they are often separated when taken from the wild. Many family members lucky enough to share a tank together are eventually separated and moved to different facilities for nothing more than business purposes, causing them great despair as significant as any human would feel in the same situation.
Additionally, orca tanks are practically like bathtubs for these animals, who normally can swim over 60 miles a day. In constricted captivity, orcas only live out a third of the lifespan they would have in the wild. Due to spacial limitations, all males in captivity experience a dorsal fin collapse, yet Seaworld tells all of their customers that this is normal. In the wild, this is rare and only occurs in an average of 1-5% of male orcas. They feel so much stress, anxiety, and aggression in captivity that they can become violent towards each other and towards trainers. Seaworld trainers have been killed in the past by frustrated orcas.
Thankfully, since the release of the documentary Blackfish, SeaWorld has lost a lot of business. Taco bell is a huge corporation which can have a big influence on consumers and is unfortunately driving more of them toward supporting the maltreatment of intelligent and emotional creatures. Don’t let Greg Creed target more unsuspecting families and gear them towards this mammal prison. Join us in opposing his choice of investment, which perpetuates the shortened lives of these majestic mammals for today and for the future.
Dear Mr. Creed,
Orcas and dolphins are extremely intelligent and social creatures that have an emotional capacity equal to, if not exceeding that of humans. Seaworld’s treatment of these mammals is unacceptably inhumane. These creatures deserve to live peaceful, happy, social, and active lives in the wild with their families where they belong, and where their full lifespans may be fulfilled.
By giving your Taco Bell customers SeaWorld discounts, you are sending a negative message to consumers, many of whom have no idea that when they visit these captive animals they are paying for their suffering. Taco Bell is a thriving company and can afford to invest in promotions elsewhere. Just because animals can’t communicate with us doesn’t mean that their emotions are any less powerful than ours. We urge you to replace this promotional offer with something positive that both you and consumers can feel good about pursuing.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: lolilujah via Flickr