He was abducted from his homeland at the age of two, right before the eyes of his family, while his mother shrieked in what can only be called gut-wrenching agony. He was put in a habitat smaller than a jail cell with other captives who bullied and beat him. He watched on as other youngsters wore torn away from their mothers by captors with the same motivation, to make money. These mothers also screamed trying to connect with their babies as they were shipped far away. When their calls went unanswered they went into a state of paralyzing grief. Adding to the unfathomable situation, many of these babies were created by his sperm after he was forced to lie on his back, his penis stroked by his captives until he ejaculated.
He performs for his captives in order that he can get food and his captives can stuff their wallets and retirement funds. Does he get frustrated? You betcha! When he reaches a point of frustration he can no longer contain he is known to do more than bite the hand that feeds him, he brutally lashes out at the person who feeds him, sometimes resulting in death.
He is now 32 years old now and he is still being held captive in America, of all places, the supposed home of the free. Who is this being? His name is Tilikum. He is a captive Orca in Seaworld, and the star of the documentary film, Blackfish, now playing in theaters and generating major Oscar buzz and the beginning of what could be a revolution.
Blackfish stands to raise the consciousness of humans. The research in the movie challenges that we may not be the highest emotional being on the planet. We humans may have created the most inhumane form of entertainment thinking whales and dolphins are just big fish. But let's hope that when we know better, we do better. Let's hope that Marine Parks and Aquariums will no longer capture whales & dolphins from the wild, no longer bread them in captivity, and begin rehabilitating the ones in captivity for release or transfer to ocean pens.
How can you help Tilikum and his fellow cetaceans?
1. See the Movie Blackfish or The Cove.
2. Boycott visiting Aquariums, Marine Parks, Vacation spots that keep dolphins and whales captive unless they have been deemed injured so badly that releasing them in the wild would result in death.
3. Re-educate our youth that whales & dolphins live in the sea, not a tank.
Hang in there Tilikum, there are a bunch of us trying to help you. To learn more about Tilikum and the movie Blackfish, please visit: http://www.magpictures.com/blackfish/
Would you like to share an inspirational story about someone you admire? In 500 words or less, tell me about that person or persons (or animal) who not only managed to climb out of a deep canyon, but went on to hike to a mountaintop. I will select one guest blogger who will win a $25 Visa gift card and their entry will be posted on my weekly blog. The entry deadline is September 30, 2013. Email your blogpost to SusanAllisonDean@aol.com.