Monday, July 12 2004

Your brother is dead, but you’re a moron

An Australian surfer died recently after being mauled by a shark. So what’s his brother’s reponse?

“I don’t believe that the shark should be killed just for the sake of what’s happened in this situation. I don’t believe that Brad can be revenged by killing a shark.”

Hate to break it to you, Steve, but the local authorities aren’t planning to kill it for “revenge.” They’re planning to kill it (if, and only if, they can conclusively identify the shark responsible) because carnivores that attack humans tend to repeat the act in the future, having discovered that humans are not only easy prey, but pretty darn tasty. Our place at the top of the food chain is not a result of animals recognizing our natural superiority; indeed, as ably chronicled in The Man-Eaters of Tsavo and other books, there are always a few predators who violently disagree with our position on that subject. I think that it’s in our best interests as a species to continue to press our claim.

I should note that the head curator at the Aquarium of Western Australia isn’t much brighter:

“If you hunt him, so what? A day later another one cannot come and kill someone else?”