Some time ago, a certain type of videos took the internet by storm – a weird trend of sorts, involving whale sharks and people who think it would be awesome to ride them. Sure, when you and your friends are out in the ocean on your fancy boat, getting hammered and wondering what to do, someone might get the brilliant idea to jump into the ocean, find the nearest whale shark, grab it by its fin and use it as a surfboard because – what the heck, there is no one to stop you.
Well, these videos have caused quite an outrage in the global community, with some people denouncing the apparent animal cruelty, while others cheer them on and cannot seem to understand why all this fuss is about. There was a footage of two guys being dragged by their boat while they are attempting to ride a whale shark that happened to be nearby.
As if the sound of the engine was not enough to disturb the animal, two idiots grabbing a hold of it and using the whale shark for their amusement seems way too cruel to be fun, even if the animal was not physically harmed by their little “stunt”. In any case, no whale shark would welcome this type of attention, but unlike most of its cousins, this one does not have the means to defend itself from drunken idiots.
Had it been a hammerhead or a great white shark, the attempt would have probably gone in an entirely different direction, and after seeing what they did to that poor animal, the sight would seem far more satisfying, all things considered. Still, other than the loss of karma, it is unlikely that these guys would face more serious consequences of their actions.
The worst part is that these sharks have membranes on top of their heads that are not meant to support human weight. Had they attempted to do this to an actual whale or a dolphin, they would be facing criminal charges, as this would directly violate the laws of several countries, including the U.S. However, since this is technically a “fish”, the law takes an entirely different stance, despite the fact that this is an endangered species we are talking about.
Just because something is not illegal does not make it right. They could have killed that shark, had they stopped her from moving for too long – it would impede its oxygen metabolism and the shark would have suffocated; not that these guys care. Unfortunately, as this trend continues, all we can do is appeal to the people not to do these things, and to the politicians to change the laws on this issue before it is too late.