What if shark scientists went to Durban and in unity publicly denounced the Kwazu Natal Sharks Board for the sham that it is instead of participating in the massive shark conference (over 300 scientists) which is ironically being hosted by the largest known commercial killer of white sharks on the planet?
What if these scientists went even further and told the world on camera to boycott Durban as a tourist destination? After all, tourism $$ is the reason behind the nets, so what if we flipped that around and made tourism $$ the reason to take the nets out?
Quite often people are unaware of the atrocities committed right next to them, which is the very reason that raising awareness is important. Slowly but surely, the world is waking up, and while some will proceed business as usual, there are those who will make choices that reflect the impact of their new knowledge. A couple of quick examples; the shark cull in Western Australia has caused some would-be cash spenders to choose to vacation elsewhere. In my town of San Francisco, people who once assumed shark fin products were already outlawed, now ask restaurant owners if shark is on the menu and choose to go elsewhere if it is.
It is not the responsibility of scientists to be conservationists. However, they are in a unique position to be heard. What if, in some television-style drama all these scientists looked the cameras and the audience members in the eye and said "No more. I am here to tell you that the Natal Sharks Board is a sham and is a crime against the ecosystem. I may lose my job, but at least you know. Then the next scientist scraps his carefully prepared speech and in turn also denounces the shark slaughter conducted by their very hosts? What if? It's nice to think about. It won't happen. But if it did, would it even work?
What do you think?
Below, Michael "The Sharkman" Rutzen discusses The Natal Sharks Board with Skyler Thomas from White Shark Video.
Debra Canabal of Epic Diving in the WSV hoodie. Get yours!
About the Author
Skyler Thomas is the primary blog contributor, cinematographer, and lead editor at White Shark Video.