About Me

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I am an attorney practicing in Hartford, Connecticut. A particular focus of mine is the legal needs of the amusement and tourism industry. My focus on the amusement industry derives from my pre-law career as an operations manager with Cedar Fair Entertainment Company and Universal Orlando. Having started my career as a ride operator at Cedar Point in 1992, I progressed through the seasonal ranks and ultimately became the Manager of Ride Operations and Park Services at Worlds of Fun in Kansas City. I also worked in Universal's operations department during the construction and development of Islands of Adventure. Today, I am an active member of the New England Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions and the International Association of Amusement Parks & Attractions. I have been invited to speak at amusement industry meetings and seminars and have worked on a variety of matters relating to this industry.

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Saturday, November 9, 2013

Blackfish / White Lies? (Pt. 2): The Art Of Advocacy Film-Making





I had to decide that my structure was going to be to tell the truthful, fact-driven narrative from beginning to end, following Tilikum’s trajectory through the eyes of the former trainers, that I can just tell the truth and lay out the facts.  Someone said that if you try too hard to do “on the one hand, but then on the other hand,” you may become faithless to the truth.  And so, if I just promise myself that I would not sensationalize, not shoehorn information in there that will manipulate people into feeling things and stick to the fact-driven story, then that is a story that people need to hear.“
Gabriela Cowperthwaite, describing Blackfish (available at http://collider.com/gabriela-cowperthwaite-jeffrey-ventre-blackfish-interview/).  

Is this accurate?  Is Blackfish really just an un-sensationalized piece of documentary film-making that doesn’t try to “manipulate people into feeling things?”  Does Blackfish simply “stick to a fact-driven story?”  That’s the question and the point of this series.  Ms. Cowperthwaite has given interviews to at least two media outlets claiming that Blackfish is just a straightforward presentation of “fact driven narrative,” without advocacy.  I do not see how that can be a credible claim given the inherent bias of the people involved (the discussion of my last entry), the structure and film-making tricks used seemingly for the sole purpose of “manipulate[ing] people” into considering only one side (the subject of this piece), and the inconsistent and sometimes demonstrably incorrect statements presented in the film (the subject of the next, and last, piece).  



What’s the Point of All This?

Now, before getting into the substance of this piece, I want to address a question that has been asked of me both privately and publicly over the last 48 hours:  What’s the point?  Does it matter whether this is a piece of advocacy or not?  I think it does.  

When a film is shown on CNN, the natural assumption of most viewers is that CNN, a news organization, made the film or at least had a hand in its production and, thus, that the film is a piece of journalism – an investigative report, perhaps – and thus meets certain journalistic standards.  This assumption is only underscored when the director of the film insists publicly that the film is “not advocating for anything,” and errs “on the side of the journalistic approach, not the advocacy approach.”  

An audience that sees such a film may reasonably assume that it is a fact-driven piece of journalism that is presented without bias, that presents both sides of the issue, that recognizes and addresses the weakness of each, and that allows the viewer to reach an educated conclusion based on the reported facts.  The viewer can reasonably assume that the statements have been fact checked and are reliable.  The very fact of presenting a piece as “journalism” lowers the audience’s critical filters and skepticism about the material presented.   

The same is not true of a piece of acknowledged advocacy.  An audience that is aware that it is watching a piece of advocacy necessarily views it with a more careful eye.  The audience knows that the advocate is trying to persuade the viewer to “buy in” to her position.  The viewer is, therefore, more suspicious and more critical in its approach to the piece.  They are less likely to simply take the advocate’s word for it. 

The distinction is, therefore, critical to the audience’s willingness to accept the content presented without questioning it, and I believe that is why Blackfish’s director has been reluctant to admit that her film is advocacy.  If she were to acknowledge that her film is intended to persuade the audience to a particular viewpoint, if she were seen as an activist, or if she were to acknowledge, for example, the ties between some of the people involved and PETA (an organization whose positions and tactics are frequently viewed by the public as unreasonable) or other activist groups, she risks a more critical and skeptical audience.  But by cloaking Blackfish in a cloak of journalistic objectivity, director Gabriela Cowperthwaite has obtained the Holy Grail of advocacy:  she has sold her message to an audience that wasn’t aware she was selling anything in the first place.  And that is what I find objectionable.  The audience of Blackfish deserves to know that they are being sold a product.  They deserve to know that there is another side to the story – even if it is not fully presented in the film.  They deserve the chance to decide for themselves whether to buy the product or leave it on the shelf.  That’s the point. 

Now… moving on.

Aside from the people involved in  Blackfish, Gabriela Cowperthwaite uses a variety of film-making techniques that seem designed to manipulate the viewer to adopt her point and, more importantly, to give little or no consideration to the possibility of an opposing view.  Some of these are relatively obvious, others not as much.  All of them are very effective.  Let’s start with an obvious example.

Where Is The Opposing Point of View?

This one can’t really be missed:  the film gives no voice to anyone with an opposing view until nearly two-thirds through the film.  The only viewpoint that is in opposition to the views expressed by every other interview subject in the film is that of former SeaWorld trainer Mark Simmons and, while he appears on camera early on in the film to talk about the relationship that exists between trainer and animal, it is not until one hour and twenty-one minutes (based on the CNN running time) into this film that he appears on camera to say anything that opposes the views that have been expressed by every other person previously.  By the time the film gives any time to an opposing viewpoint, the audience has already been exposed to eighty-one minutes of non-stop advocacy.  This only serves to diminish the credibility of the one person expressing a different viewpoint.  The way the film is cut makes it appear that the views held by Mr. Simmons are outliers rather than legitimate points for consideration.  Put simply, the film’s structure is set up to minimize any thought given to Mr. Simmons’ viewpoint.

Now, I think I can guess what many of you are thinking right now:  Why didn’t SeaWorld offer its own view?  Gabriela Cowperthwaite has said that she asked SeaWorld to be interviewed for Blackfish but that they ultimately declined.  Could it be SeaWorld’s own fault that its view is not represented well in this film?  I don’t think so.  The problem with this line of thinking is in assuming that SeaWorld was the only party that could represent an opposing view.  But that’s simply not true.  Mr. Simmons proves that.  Ms. Cowperthwaite has stated that she understands why SeaWorld may not have wanted to participate, acknowledging “that at a certain point there was no way they could come off as not being defensive” given the questions she would ask and that SeaWorld was “never going to look good” in this film.  If that is true, then who can blame SeaWorld for not setting themselves up for that?   

But the fact that SeaWorld does not want to appear in the film does not mean that no one representing its side of the issue would have.  Surely, there are other former SeaWorld employees or others in the field of zoology, conservation, or veterinary science that could have been interviewed to represent an opposing viewpoint – but none were (or, if they were, they were left on the cutting room floor).  The absence of any opposing voice until the film is nearly over effectively conditions the audience to disfavor anything other than the message being repeatedly advanced so that, when an opposing view is raised, it can be easily discarded.  While effective from an advocacy point of view, this structure seems, in my opinion, designed to “manipulate people into feeling things” – exactly what Ms. Cowperthwaite claims not to be doing.

The Mark Simmons / Loro Parque Interview

Blackfish uses another technique to undermine Mr. Simmons’ credibility, but this one is more subtle.  Watch this clip (used here pursuant to 17 U.S.C. §107) and see if you spot it.

{this clip has been removed due to technical difficulties}


It is admittedly easier to spot this when seen in context with the rest of the film, but Mr. Simmons is the only person interviewed whose immediate reaction to an off-camera question is shown.  The interviewer is not heard asking questions in any of the other testimonials at any other point of the film.  Moreover, the answers given by these other individuals are very polished, with little or no “umms” “uhhhs” or obvious signs of thinking or mental preparation of an answer, such as looking away or tilting the head.  Whether this is because they are merely better speakers than Mr. Simmons or because Ms. Cowperthwaite took several takes with each and used the best footage (which is a common and accepted practice – I’m not suggesting that’s wrong), I don’t know.  But the difference between everyone else and Mr. Simmons is jarring.  We hear the question and see the immediate raw response as he answers it.  We see Mr. Simmons looking off camera and struggling to find the right words to say something as simple as, “I wasn’t there.”  He looks nervous – which is natural when one is not an actor, a camera is rolling, and questions are being asked.  And, after seventy-nine minutes of polished responses with no off-camera questioning, he appears to the viewer to be potentially hiding something.  He appears perhaps not credible.  I believe that was by design – another filmmaker’s technique to “manipulate people into feeling things” about this person and what he is saying.

Mr. Simmons’ reaction to the Loro Parque question was not necessary to set the stage for or segue to that section of the film – particularly since Mr. Simmons apparently was not there and doesn’t know much about it.  But his raw response to the off-camera question, the only one in the entire film, did portray him as potentially not credible and evasive when the topic of a tragic event was raised.  The directorial choice to fundamentally change the way Mr. Simmons is presented as compared to the other ex-trainers in Blackfish works brilliantly to subtly encourage the viewer not to believe what he is saying.

The Unsubstantiated Suggestion of a Cover Up


The last manipulative technique I want to mention in Blackfish is particularly egregious: Blackfish accuses SeaWorld of some kind of cover up connected to the death of Daniel Dukes but offers not a shred of evidence – or even speculation – as to what SeaWorld could possibly be covering up.  The effect of this is to leave the audience to imagine the worst – whatever that might be.

But there is no cover up.  Until this film, there does not appear to have even been the suggestion of a cover up.  I’ve spent time trying to find anyone that has written about this supposed cover up at any time before this movie.  I haven’t found anything (although I freely admit that I haven’t looked everywhere on the Internet).  Sure, many questioned SeaWorld’s characterization of this death, but I haven’t found anyone suggesting something more nefarious as Blackfish does.  More importantly, even if there were whispers of such a cover up lurking somewhere in the deepest corners of the Internet, there is certainly no evidence of such a thing – after all, does anyone think that such evidence, if it existed, would not have found its way into this film?  

 But, after hearing an hour and twenty minutes of one-sided interviews about SeaWorld and about injuries and deaths, both of trainers and of whales themselves, the audience is primed to believe that SeaWorld might even go so far as to engage in a conspiratorial cover up.  Never mind that there is not a shred of proof, evidence, or even reasonable inference to support such a claim.  Hardly the stuff of a typical “fact-driven story,” is it?  Indeed, no responsible editor in a journalistic setting would have even allowed this wholly speculative allegation to appear in a story without something to substantiate it.  But it can’t be beat if you’re trying to manipulate the viewer to accept the advocacy presented.

So… Blackfish features a cast predominantly made up of people with undisclosed biases and agendas and uses a variety of (admittedly effective) film-making techniques to manipulate its audience in a way that discourages critical thought and skepticism of the statements and assertions being offered.  Ms. Cowperthwaite, how exactly can you really claim that this is not a piece of advocacy but is, instead, just a piece of “fact driven” work that errs "on the side of the journalistic approach"?  If there’s any remaining doubt, the final piece in this series will look at the substance of some of the statements and arguments presented in Blackfish - statements and arguments that gloss over logical inconsistencies, may have been at least partially disavowed by Ms. Cowperthwaite herself, and ignore at least one seemingly false assertion so that the advocate’s narrative is preserved.  See you then.

35 comments:

  1. Thanks for writing out this series.

    I couldn't get further than about 30 minutes into this documentary before I had to turn it off. It's not that they are telling straight up lies, but they are leaving out details in a way that makes the whole thing come of disingenuous and biased. I especially can't stand it when it's about sensitive subjects that rally up mobs. Show me both sides and let me make an informed decision.

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    1. I also had a hard time finishing the film. It was a so obviously manipulative it disturbed me. I want to be informed with all the facts, not just those supporting one position. I felt like the film's presentation was designed to illicit an emotional response and make me feel like taking any other position is wrong on my part.

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    2. Hi Its great others feel the same way. I forced myself to watch this from beginning to end because I wanted to get the anti caps side Its ovb from minute one that this is going to be an anti cap film and they will do what ever it takes , Lie Manipulate, etc to get the audience to be blinded

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    3. this is why those of us that are ignorant must view all sides before judging to harshly and rapidly! Which is what I have been doing!

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  2. Really interesting piece. Did feel that the film was honourable, if not one sided. Wish it had been more even handed in it's depiction of the topic. Looking forward to the final installment of your piece on the film. (Also, the film clip seems to have been removed)

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  3. Hmmm... Thanks for the heads up about the clip. I don't know why it was removed. The third installment has been delayed due to professional obligations. I hope to have something up soon.

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    1. So many people are anonymous here that it only fuels speculation. I am a former Sea World trainer. I swam with and trained killer whales for the better part of 10 years. Thank you for taking the time to put into words a well organized and thought out piece. The take-away's from you well worded blog helped me put a few finishing touches on my book. I would plug it here, however this is your stage and I would only ask you to take my call sometime after the New Year.

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    2. Certainly Rich. I would be happy to talk to you. Happy Holidays.

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  4. This is a well written series of blogs! You are examining a difficult and explosive topic, one that has a following that greatly resembles a "cult" of sorts. You present valid questions and points, though I fear they will be far to advanced for some already enthralled in the current bandwagon. I look forward to reading the third installment, when time allows you to complete it.

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  5. Bravo, sir. I am looking forward to reading your next piece.

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  6. Thank you for taking the time to write this. This serious of posts has been spreading like wildfire through facebook over the past 24 hours. It is a very interesting and important perspective. I eagerly await Part 3.

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  7. Thank you.
    Thank you for writing a piece that is not "in support of" or "in defense of" but simply looks at the angle of the film and it's motivations in a straightforward manner.

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  8. The opposing point of view is that what Sea World does is educational and to the benefit of marine biology- and that is simply false.
    Sea World refused to be interviewed and kept quiet until the film hit it big. They were hoping it would just go away.
    I loved Sea World as a kid, and yes it really neat to get close to my favorite animal- that was the 80's, when we didn't know as much about them in the wild. The biggest problem is that they claim to be educational, when in fact the park is more akin to a circus than a zoological institution.
    They refuse to evolve their business model to reflect modern science... and it is really sad.

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    1. Oh, and PS, Loro Parque is currently home to a WILD CAPTURED Orca named "Morgan" who was deemed fit for release back into the wild by scientists and now is listed as Sea World Property. Read a book that's not written by a corporation.

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    2. How exactly do scientists, at least any with experience and reputable standing, deem an animal fit for release, without ever having examined the animal in question? And how exactly does one expect intelligent people to accept the opinion of those scientists over the opinion of the experienced individuals who have actually been hands on with the animal since its rescue?

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  9. Morgan was found emaciated and in need of human intervention to survive. Again making the point of this blog that's it's important to present the facts accurately. To call that a "wild capture" is purposefully misleading and biased.

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  10. How can you seriously criticize footage which shows detah and injuries of trainers a nd deaths of whales and want to see the other sid e of the question . There is no other side. Death is final.

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    1. Those trainers accept the risk of working with wild animals. That's part of their job. Just like astronauts accept the risk of space travel. Death is final but when the deaths of willing participants are exploited in order to advocate for lack of human-animal contact, it adds insult to the injury.

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  11. Thanks for this material about Blackfish. Those of us who felt a squeamish feeling during the film have now understood why...it just didn't ring 100 percent accurate as a portrayal of SeaWorld and the orcas. There are those in modern society who are adamantly against the use of any animal for any purpose. I am not of that mind set. Responsible treatment of all animals is critical. But, that does not mean we cannot use animals and provide appropriate animal husbandry practices in their care.

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  12. someone I know posted this 'letter' from Paul Watson - talk about spin. Lots of half truths in here...

    http://www.seashepherd.org/news-and-media/2013/12/21/a-reply-to-sea-worlds-open-letter-1537

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  13. arghhh I cannot get the link to work.. anyone else have that problem black on black but no matter the rest is true..if you want to see another "trick of interviewing" watch this one:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gO75r-_kU5Y
    note the backgrounds and the tone of the interviewer and the fact that only ONE side of the picture is shown.. none of this is "off the cuff" all is staged to present the picture the director wants the public to see.. as in Blackfish

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    1. It wasn't staged. It was film clips of prior incidents. What exactly would the "other side" of this be?

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    2. I seen where they took various clips and submerged them with other clips to make their point more valid. This was in accurate, because SeaWorld knows their whales so well.

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    3. Actually Sea World used Dr,.Visser self published and twisted the facts. She is still waiting for an apologyThis report was on one pod New Zealand where 125 had some sort of dorsal deformity, A curve a twist... Which makes 0.8% of all orcas, less than.0.1% have a dorsal deformity or collapse. 100% Of adult mature males in captivity have complete collapse.

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  14. As mentioned in the blog, you would think that CNN would have shown a truly journalistic piece which would explore it as news and present arguments on both sides. However, I think CNN has abandoned their good journalism for sensationalism, as has most of the media. Unfortunately they are out to entertain and push their agenda. I really hate it when people fall into believing the propaganda garbage that goes around. It has been appalling to see what is being taught to our children as truth, without showing both sides of any topic. We stopped seeing both sides quite some time ago. I once had a conversation about 10 years ago, with a young man who was in the 5th or 6th grade about what he was taught about China and the decision for the Chinese to have a one-child rule. I was horrified at the total demonetization of the Chinese people because he was taught that they don't value girls so they don't keep them. There were other misconceptions about the one-child rule and about the Chinese people and culture. I was horrified because I had been to China to adopt our daughter, and most of what this young man had to say about what he was taught was wrong information and very one-sided. This is just an example of how much people accept being told a bunch of negative things about a topic and never finding out what the other side is or the truth in any way. It's not just the news networks, but in our schools. Shame on you, if you believe everything a one-sided story tells. If Cowperthwaite is telling us that Seaworld would not have had a chance either way, of COURSE it's biased. Set out to demonize any person, group, or organization and it can be done. Even Mother Teresa would not have a chance under these kinds of circumstances.

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  15. Perfect. Flawless execution, my friend. Can you make more articles on Blackfish? I feel there is so much more you can write about. Like how footage of a capture SeaWorld played no part in was featured or how Gabby fails to tell us that SeaWorld hasn't captured an orca in 35 years. The documentary is literally propaganda and lies. The fact they even mention captures is preposterous. The movie's main point is even skeptical. ' Orcas shouldn't be in captivity because it drives them psychologically insane to the point of attacking people. ' Uh, what? Orcas are large animals, erm maybe that's why there have been a few dozen incidents involving them? That shouldn't be surprising to anyone. Instead, the movie exploits the deaths of beautiful people to push a crazed opinion. It's DISGUSTING. I don't know who is more stupid, the liars in the movie or the morons who believe it. I'm leaning towards the idiocy of the public and their failure to not believe everything they're told. Blackfish not only exploits the trainer's deaths, but they exploit the naive, weak-mined public as well. Genius.

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    1. Are you on crack? Do you know where Seaworld gets their dolphins? From the wild. They breed their own Orca now. Did we mention that they are inbred? A majority of their whale population is fathered by Tillikum. They collect semen, and AI the females. Some are his own daughters. They also breed them many years before they would do so in the wild. They suffer from depression. Whales in the wild do not have flopped dorsal fins, as they do at Seaworld. They will tell you that it's normal as well, but I'll tell you that it's not. I have seen over 100 Orca in the wild. I have never seen a flopped dorsal fin. Dorsal fins laying to one side are caused by depression. That's a fact. Look it up. Genius.

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    2. you are right it surely does exploit their deaths! How sad that Black fish is doing the very thing they accuse SeaWorld of doing!!! IMAGINE THAT!

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    3. 23% wild orcas have flopped dorsal fins. 100 wild orcas is not a lot in the grand scheme of things. What you are spewing above is not fact, in fact. So you learn your facts. I did look it up, apparently you didn't. Genius. http://marinelife.about.com/od/marinelife101/f/killerwhaledorsalfincollapse.htm

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  16. Can't help but think that writing off people involved in the documentary as activists therefor biased in some way is more than a little hypocritical when written by an attorney whose "particular focus of mine is the legal needs of the amusement and tourism industry." Pot calling the Kettle Black - fish?

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  17. I couldn't agree more! While Blackfish was most certainly thought provoking...I didn't intend to feel the way I did!! I think we should all be educated in various matters such as this but to put out a documentary of such things, having no integrity behind it, is quite disturbing!! Many points were well taken and I have been doing lots of research on Killer whales only to conclude that I am still baffled by Blackfish!! I cant imagine SeaWorld a family operated business would allow such things to take place certainly not, realizing the in depth back lash from these horrific deaths. Not to mention how each family and person must have felt during those tragic days!! Frankly I'm quite irritated that there wasn't an opposing side to this debate in this film!! It left me seeking answers to the dumb founded questions I had!!!! Needless to say I am well on my way of discovering much. Thank you for this blog! It took me all day of researching to discover it!! And why now?? Where was she when all this started? What provoked such bias??? Who is she does anyone know? I find this quite disturbing as well...or better yet why didn't she produce this after the first death?? Because just like anything else she needed more than one account. Think of all the years whales have been training...I am quite surprised that there aren't more fatalities more often! It seems also that SeaWorld is doing well, many are still seeing their show. I have no desire to see it but for those that do and find it enjoyable more power to them. Further more I feel like that film has aroused attention and now some may just want to see Tilikum.

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  18. You have brought up some very good points. Let’s see if we can work through some these together. This is a bit long.

    “And I know that the most compelling advocacy comes from “true believers” – those who have bought in so deeply to their position that they are not only trying to persuade their audience to come to a certain conclusion, but that they firmly believe this conclusion is the only one backed up by “the truth” or “the facts.”

    The ex-trainers also talked about the love they had for the orcas and the strong bond they formed. They took care of “Their whales” like they were their own. Have you ever been somewhere or worked somewhere and loved what you did and took care of animals or elderly people and became attached. You also saw thing that wasn’t quite right. You are young and have landed your dream job. All of the trainers said they loved working with animals. I’ve worked in convalescent care and knew the nurses and aids were not doing something that should have been. I was new and didn’t push it. As I got more experienced I felt responsible to take care of my charges and didn’t know what would happen to them after I left. I finally had to leave and I started to speak up for voices who couldn’t speak for themselves. So, you could say that I was an advocate. It's the only humane thing to do. Mark Simmons said his part. He was pro captivity and works capturing, placing and training dolphins for aquarium amusement parks.

    http://www.oceanembassy.com/team-simmons.html and http://articles.latimes.com/2007/jun/24/world/fg-flipper24

    Speaking of Ms. Cowperthwaite
    “Her film manipulates its audience brilliantly and seamlessly, not only convincing its audience that only facts. “The film presents facts but convincing them that the film presents only the facts.’’

    You can research the facts and you will find most of the to be factual and documented, thus the term documentary. It needs to be based on documents and does not need to show both sides,
    Sea World refused to be a part, but they had some of their former and current employees in the fill stating that they loved being with the whales and did all they could for them.

    “The audience of Blackfish deserves to know that they are being sold a product. They deserve to know that there is another side to the story – even if it is not fully presented in the film. They deserve the chance to decide for themselves whether to buy the product or leave it on the shelf. That’s the point.”

    The majority of us have not judged on Blackfish alone. That would be just as absurd as believing Sea World’s million dollar image campaign just because some bad actors and a dolphin hunter told you to believe them.

    Continued

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  19. Continued
    “By the time the film gives any time to an opposing viewpoint, the audience has already been exposed to eighty-one minutes of non-stop advocacy.”

    It is near impossible to find a credible third party scientific peer reviewed journals that say that Tilikum was not at fault and wasn't made aggressive because of his treatment. He had a traumatic, lonely, picked on life and was never taught by his mom how to be a whale and protect himself. They claimed it was it was trainer error, then when the evidence proved otherwise, it wasn’t her fault. The three independent witnesses to the event were walked to a room when if was found out that they actually saw something different. All the employees met up at the terrace and were coached before the cops were called. They lied and tried to cover it up and bribe the guest.
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/53285070/Connell-Family-Witness-Testimony-to-OSHA-OCSO-re-Dawn-Brancheau-death-at-SeaWorld

    There are three different statements from guests. Read them and then read the police report when they arrived at the scene.

    “The absence of any opposing voice until the film is nearly over effectively conditions the audience to disfavor anything other than the message being repeatedly advanced so that, when an opposing view is raised, it can be easily discarded.”

    Sea World will not put themselves in a position where they have to answer questions face to face. They chose to take out one-sided full page newspaper ads and nitpicking bully websites to discredit everyone behind the safety of their computer. That alone should speak volumes about the motives. This has gotten long and I could go on and show proof of almost every point if you wanted. Even if none of it was true, Tilikum killed a girl before and two other deaths could have been prevented and large marine animals do not belong in concrete tanks and it doesn’t take a documentary to know that it is wrong. Try and find one instance where Sea World accepted an invitation to tell their side. They will not. Not even on the phone. They choose Twitter and when we ask the real honest questions we are labeled Extremists. Radicals and trolls. We have nothing to gain by informing the public of the truth. Sea World has every reason to lose by hiding the truth and have been caught lying, misquoting and stealing research and twisting it to cater to their agenda. The only propaganda going on here is from a sinking Sea World who would rather fire 300 employees to spend millions to try and repair their image. If they were honest they would admit their wrong doings and work with the city and consumers and find something that will work. Many people have ideas where this corporation can still make money.They could expand the rides portion, see marine in the bay during feeding times and maybe get a picture with one. Sea World could still do rescues and research all the data theve collected for the last 50 years. There are only a handful on orcas.

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