Monday, December 23, 2013

An Exercise in Free Speech

Captain Paul Watson · 283,646 like this
3 hours ago · 
  • Dirty Dancing With the Duck Dynasty Devotees

    That Was Fun!

    What an amazing day it was yesterday. I posted a satirical opinion about a homophobic bigoted duck killer and received hundreds of hateful and nasty responses, and mainly from “Christians” or at least people who call themselves Christians.

    It does not really concern me because it has given me the opportunity to ban numerous individuals from my page. For those who say they will no longer support me anymore, well, what makes them think I want support from homophobic, racist, intolerant bigoted people and I sure as hell don’t want any support from duck hunters, or any other types engaged in the murder business.

    This is my page and I support conservation and environmental activism. I don’t just believe in climate change, I know it to be a scientifically proven reality. Climate change deniers are simply in denial of that reality. I am against hunting. I am against racism and I am against people who denigrate gays and lesbians.

    I’m also against people who mask their bigotry with the bible and put words into the mouth of Jesus Christ and God to justify their homophobic and racist points of view.

    If people don’t like what I stand for they are welcome to unfriend this page. Or if it makes anyone feel better, they can leave a nasty hate comment and I’ll ban them. It does not matter either way. The comments do not bother me, in fact I find them amusing, so to such people, feel free to knock yourself out.

    People spit out the word “liberal” like it’s a bad thing. I’m not really a liberal myself but I certainly don’t view it as a bad thing. In fact I think liberals are certainly more tolerant of helping the poor than most so-called Christians. I would suggest a reading of President John F. Kennedy’s speech on being Liberal. It is a brilliant defense of Liberalism.

    Of course for the Tea-baggers, oh sorry, the Sarah Palin Tea Party crowd, even Richard Nixon is considered a Liberal and considering that he gave us the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act, I guess he qualifies as a Liberal.

    The exception of course are Australian Liberals who are rabid right wing anti-environmentalists. (There are of course a few individual exceptions)

    I am against war. I am against corporate welfare.

    I am for veganism and vegetarianism. I am for helping the poor and the disadvantaged. I am for defending the rights of animals.

    I am also for the Constitution of the United States and thus for Freedom of Speech but with the understanding that Freedom of Speech implies accepting the consequences of speaking out. Yes everyone is free to say bigoted and offensive things but they must accept that others will exercise their freedom of speech in return. Phil Robertson said his piece on Gays and African Americans and A & E exercised their right to remove him from their network. I in turn exercised my freedom to satire Phil Robertson and his fans are free to denounce me for it and I am free to exercise my freedom to ban them from commenting on my page.

    This is who I am and this is my page and if anyone disagrees with what I do or believe, the solution is simple. Leave the page.

    I did find some of the comments quite amusing. Some assumed that I must be gay to support the gay and lesbian community. Well I’m not gay and I find it strange that anyone would expect only gays to object to homophobic comments. I’m not black either but I oppose racist comments about African Americans.

    I was somewhat surprised (well not really) at the hateful rhetoric many people have left. Much of it did not get past my filters because of the obscenities. But I saw the posts and thus was able to ban the people who posted them.

    I have nothing against Christianity. I find most of the people who responded with hateful rhetoric are not Christian at all. They may think they are, but no real Christian would exercise anything but love for all people. They certainly would not be preying for my death and my ships to be sunk.

    I have known, and I know some really genuine Christians (of all denominations) and I respect them immensely and I am thankful to them for providing the example for which to measure what a Christian really is. Regrettably they are apparently few in number.

    For those who say I am ignorant of the Bible all I can say is that I was thoroughly educated as a Catholic student (in my youth) and I’ve read the bible cover to cover in both English and Latin. I am not a Catholic today but I do like this new Pope, especially the name he has chosen. Francis, the patron saint of animals. And I like the fact that he is the most tolerant Pope in the history of the church.

    Others suggested I was jealous that Duck Dynasty has more viewers than Whale Wars. Of course they do. A &E is a much bigger network than Animal Planet and in a world where the Kardashians have even higher ratings this means nothing. I could care less what the rating are. I’m not in the television business.

    For those who call me a wanted fugitive. Well, I am in America right now and the U.S. government is well aware that I am here. I attend public events and do interviews with the media. Hardly a definition of a fugitive.

    For those who decided it would be relevant to insult my appearance all I can say to that is, if the Duck Dynasty men are the standard of attractiveness that I am being judged by, I am flattered that I am regarded as looking unattractive. And for the others who said I look Gay, well I had a chuckle of that. I wish I had the fashion sense of many Gay men but also I am hopelessly heterosexual in that regard.

    I have never injured or killed another human being and I don’t engage and never have engaged in the killing of animals. I began my career at age 11 rescuing beavers from leg-hold traps and disrupting duck and deer hunts. (It is amazing what flying a hawk shaped kite can do to ruin a duck hunter’s day)

    I appreciate all those haters who have exposed themselves on my page and thus have given me the opportunity to ban them. I don’t mind people having an opinion pro or con, but this is not a page to post perverse and blasphemous opinions about God hating Gays.

    I would think that a God who stands for love would be tolerant of love, be it between a man and a woman, a man and a man or between a woman and a woman. People do not make a choice to be Gay. That is who they are.

    I know many Gay men and women and they are like everyone else. Some are people I admire, some are people I disagree with on various topics and some are good friends. When people insult my friends, I believe it is right to stand in their defense.

    As for the Duck Dynasty, my primary criticism is that they are killers. They are rich enough that they do not need to hunt for food so all the comments about how they need to feed their families are just silly. What would this country be like if every American exercised their “right” to kill ducks and deer? It would be a country devoid of ducks and deer. We need only do the math. Say if one third of the three hundred million Americans each took their “limit” on ducks and deer. That would be over some two hundred million deer and well over a billion ducks and there simply are not enough of these animals to endure such an annual massacre. Thankfully hunters are a small minority of the population, and getting smaller.

    For those who say we come from a hunting and gathering background and thus hunters are simply in touch with our roots, all I can say is where the hell are the gatherers? I don’t see acorn-gathering clubs.

    In prey predator relations, the predator takes down the sick and the weak, as did early humans. The modern hominid hunter cowardly kills (from a distance) the biggest and strongest and thus contributes to the diminishment of the species.

    Killing an animal with a rifle is a craven activity. To call this “sport” is absurd. Spraying the sky with shot to slaughter birds is not sport, it is a massacre.

    I do not like hunters. I deplore the pictures they post with their big smirking smiles with the corpses of their victims. I deplore their lack of respect for the animals they kill. I deplore their lack of empathy for the suffering they inflict.

    I make no apologies for this. If you are a hunter or support hunting, I don’t need your support. I’m not going to betray my principles for support.

    For those who said they will no longer support Sea Shepherd because of my views on hunting or on bigots, well that’s just fine with me.

    It was interesting that when I posted the commentary I had 282,667 “friends”. After banning some 500 haters, I now have 283,492. So instead of losing “friends” I seemed to have gained over 850 new ones. Not that the numbers matter.

    Whale Wars is now filming it’s 7th season. It is a popular show but unlike other reality shows we don’t have the infighting and silly personal squabbles. I realize that such things have contributed to the higher ratings of say “Deadliest Catch” but that is not what we are about.

    We are about saving whales from unlawful whaling activities in an established Whale Sanctuary. We demonstrate commitment to a common cause and we do not play the game of on-air feuding and petty disagreements.

    And for those who say that Sea Shepherd does not know what we are doing, that we are incompetent, all I can say is that we have sailed the oceans for over 35 years without causing or sustaining any serious injuries. We have never had an oil spill. We have never gone aground nor lost a ship to storms or ice.

    The “professional” Japanese whalers have had three casualties at sea, two catastrophic fires, two oil spills (that we know of) and one ship damaged by ice.

    Sea Shepherd has mounted 10 campaigns to the Southern Ocean, the most hostile body of water on the planet without a mishap. Sea Shepherd ships have weathered storms and ice, have circled the globe numerous times, outrun Somali pirates and escaped pursuit from the Soviet Navy. Thus any accusations of incompetence are simply a cause for amusement to us. We know what we are doing and we could not care less for the opinions of those who think otherwise based on their prejudiced opinions that have no basis in fact.

    But all in all it was an interesting exercise in expression and consequences with the benefit that I now have 500 plus fewer people on this page that I am happy to be rid of, and 850 new friends that I welcome onboard.