They Are Called Killer Whales For A Reason...What's Next--"The In-Salinity Plea"? ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Thursday, February 25, 2010

They Are Called Killer Whales For A Reason...What's Next--"The In-Salinity Plea"?

Let's talk about the killer whale that killed its trainer. An awful and tragic event to be sure, but the news is resonating. We're not talking Free Willy here. No, this is more like Moby Dick. Jaws. The Leviathan. The Old Man and The Sea.

Or as Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote over 150 years ago:

Who trusted God was love indeed
And love Creation's final law
Tho' Nature, red in tooth and claw
With ravine, shriek'd against his creed
I actually heard a radio commentator say this man-eating whale event was a pre-meditated act and that the whale was not prompted to simply eat its trainer. "The whale decided to do this as opposed to simply swimming around in circles," he said.
Hmm.   Hmm.....Okay, let me get this straight. An animal committed murder with a human victim?  If it was hungry, would it have simply been a dining experience? It was pre-meditated, he said.  Did the whale know right from wrong? Was it fully cognizant of its behavior. The operative term is mens rea--or criminal intent. What was inside its head?

If whales abstract, if they are sentient beings, why do we incarcerate them?

What's next? The insanity plea...or would it be the In-Salinity Plea???

Perhaps the real issue is whether Killer Whales and other marine mammals should be in captivity? Perhaps that made the creature...uhh...want to kill? There is a reason why evolution seems to favor animals with enormous teeth.

Incidentally, the radio commentator whale expert predicted this would lead to an increased interest in having more such creatures in captivity--and not a diminution of interest.

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