Thursday, October 13, 2011


Today seems to be shaping up as a day when I may end up just pissing a bunch of people off.  The story below may have started it and now comes this little bit of news concerning the Atlanta Pride Party recently held at the city's Georgia Aquarium  I have to admit, perhaps, confess, that I have enjoyed visiting aquariums and looking at fish.  I have to admit that while I have certainly "noticed" the similarity between zoos and prisons (having been in one, prison, not zoo), I never gave much thought to aquariums.  Maybe, I should have.  Maybe Atlanta Pride should have.  Now, Atlanta Pride says PETA is just looking for publicity in their attack on them for going to the Aquarium for their big gala and playing loud music with flashing lights which they say hurt the fish and mammals "housed" there.  Obviously this is true.  Never hit the side of a fish tank. Haven't we been up all on the Navy for booming the oceans with their toys.  

Atlanta Pride complains that PETA should have contacted them first, but then when asked if they would consider moving the venue due to PETA's concerns, they replied, "...absolutely not."  I guess that is the part that bothers me most.  Won't consider it?  Why the hell not.  Can they not see that loud music played in an enclosed aquarium might not sit well with the inmates? 

The Aquarium itself claims it is no problem for the fish because they just love to dance.

This story comes to you from GA Voice.  In case you wonder who that is: The Georgia Voice seeks to be the news outlet of record for the state’s LGBT communities and their allies.

PETA: Atlanta Pride kickoff party ‘torture’ to aquarium animals

OCTOBER 12, 2011 16:33
Atlanta Pride kickoff party
Not everyone who attended the Atlanta Pride kickoff party at the Georgia Aquarium came away with rave reviews. Dan Matthews, a senior vice president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, published an opinion piece on Huffington Post Tuesday calling the event “a celebration of freedom in a building that celebrates captivity.”
Matthews, who was in town to work at the organization's booth during the two-day festival, attended the event and is urging Atlanta Pride organizers to hold the party elsewhere in the future. At issue for Matthews and PETA, aside from the animals being held in captivity, was the music playing during the event which Matthews says “has further devastated the lives and psyches of these uniquely gifted animals.”
Matthews writes of a conversation he had with an aquarium volunteer in which the volunteer allegedly remarks that the animals in the tanks were irritated by the dance music, so much so in fact, that the beluga whales began to attack the seals kept inside the same tank.
“The UN may have banned the torture of prisoners with music, but it is routinely practiced at the Georgia Aquarium,” Matthews writes in his article.
James Parker Sheffield, executive director of the Atlanta Pride Committee, called Matthews' article inaccurate and questioned why PETA did not address concerns to the APC before contributing an article to Huffington Post.
“I have complete faith in the staff of the [Georgia] Aquarium. No animals were harmed by our party,” Sheffield said.
“I find it bothersome that an organization with a direct line to us chose to say absolutely nothing,” he added. “Why wasn't there an encouragement of a conversation? No one called us. No one asked a single question. It's really hard for me to view this any other way than PETA looking to have their name in the news.”
When asked if the APC would consider moving the venue due to PETA's concerns, Sheffield said, “Absolutely not.”
Mackenzie Whalen, a spokesperson for the Georgia Aquarium, confirmed today that she was aware of the article and said the Georgia Aquarium was preparing an official response. Whalen said that no animals were harmed during the event or any event held at the aquarium featuring music.

Top photo: The 2011 Atlanta Pride Kickoff Party was held at the Georgia Aquarium for a third consecutive year. (Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photography)

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