Not to make light of the tragedy at Sea World yesterday where a whale killed its trainer, but I just read an article (The Guardian, via Google News) that seemed sort of silly in his characterizations of the whale:
"The fate of the whale that killed its trainer in Orlando, Florida, yesterday has not yet been decided, although this is the third time the animal has been involved in the death of a human."
"Tilikum has been involved in two previous fatalities. In 1991 he was one of three orcas blamed for the death of a trainer who lost her balance and fell into the pool at another marine park, Sealand in British Columbia. In 1999 the body of a man who broke into SeaWorld was found draped over the whale: the intruder is believed to have died of hypothermia after jumping into the tank."
Not to defend a killer whale, but how do you "blame" a whale for the death of people who fall into a tank? What are they supposed to do? How are they supposed to save them from drowning? The guy who broke into SeaWorld-- it's not like the whale left its tank and tracked the guy down on foot.
This whale seems like it would be good friends with the woman who was denied tenure in Alabama and shot and killed her colleagues, who had been mysteriously involved in the shooting death of her brother years earlier. Except she's a person, who shot a gun, and this is a whale, who swims around in a tank. "Release into the wild is highly unlikely" -- what? Is the whale an unusual danger to humans if it gets put back in the ocean? I feel like the whale needs a lawyer.
Of course what happened is a tragedy. But it seems pretty silly-- at least after reading a couple of articles-- to assume the whale was acting with some sort of real intent, or at least intent that's in any sense comparable to human intent.