Captive Orcas Will Not Have to Perform at Sochi Opening Ceremony
by Natalia Galbetti
Categories: Animals, Causes.

Blackfish has done it again. After exposing the horrors that captive orcas go through at SeaWorld and other water parks, the documentary has played a crucial role in making sure that torture doesn’t happen again.

On Wednesday Congress unanimously passed an amendment that requires the USDA to research the effects that captivity has on orcas and other large marine mammals and develop updated regulation to protect them.

“For almost 20 years, USDA has failed to review and update the Animal Welfare Act regulations for captive orcas and other marine mammals,” stated Jared Huffman (D-CA) and Adam Schiff (D-CA) in a release about the amendment they proposed together. “Our amendment reminds USDA that inaction is unacceptable – the American people want to see these regulations reviewed and updated to reflect the growing scientific and public concern about the effect of captivity on these animals.”

Both Congressmen admitted to watching Blackfish and being disturbed by the stories of orcas in captivity. At first they tried sending a letter to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack along with other 36 Congressmen demanding that the USDA come up with updated regulation concerning the “awe-inspiring creatures” but when that when unanswered, Huffman and Schiff proposed the amendment.

After both Congressmen pleaded their case, Congress approved the Agriculture Appropriations Act. The amendment gives the USDA a budget of $1 million that must be spent on researching updated records of the effects of captivity on orcas and marine mammals, and coming up with updated regulations to protect them based on modern science.

And it all took five minutes — literally. Better late than never. You can watch the Congressmen proposal and vote below.

Via The Dodo

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

  • Michael

    This is good, but they MUST STOP the breeding programs now. SW will continue to breed and farm these animals out and the torture will never end.

  • http://batman-news.com April West

    I wouldn’t trust the USDA as far as I can throw them. Now, they will get 1 million dollars and I’ll bet the majority of that money will be wasted, and no real research will be conducted. Look at our own factory farms and how horrible the animals are treated. Does the USDA do much about that? Nope.

    • phoenixlake

      The USDA is too busy trying to promote Monsanto & Syngenta GMOs in our food supply. I do not trust the USDA to do the right thing at all. That is why Tom Vilsack did not answer the first letter, too high and mighty to be bothered with Orcas, Dolphins. #EmptyTheTanks #DoNotBuyATicket
      THANK YOU Rep Huffman and Rep Schiff!!!! Thank You!!!

      • http://batman-news.com April West

        It’s sickening how Obama keeps hiring former Monsanto employees into his cabinet. Bush and Clinton did that too and Obummer is no better. Far worse, I’d say. That evil prick needs to go.

  • Lisa Scharin

    I hope they can actually PASS something!!! This Congress has been the WORST, MOST obstructive ever! I have to wonder how some can keep their jobs! TOO bad we can’t fire some of them!! Anyway, I am VERY thankful that we have some aware, compassionate people in Congress that are trying!!!

  • EARTHLINGS

    THE USDA IS A FAILURE ON SO MANY LEVELS. IF MERCERY FOR ANIMALS WERE NOT DOING THEIR JOB, THE PUBLIC WOULD NEVER KNOW JUST WHAT A FAILURE THEY ARE. I BLAME TO CORRUPTION WITH THESE GREEDY INDUSTRIES INTEREST GROUPS AND THE STATE REPS THEY PAY TO KEEP THESE HELL HOLES OPEN WITH NOTHING EVER CHANGING. SHAME ON ALL THREE HAVING NO INTEGRITY AND LOST VALUES FOR GREED.

  • kelley wyskiel

    Money in the millions given to the USDA to tell them to do their job….why? Why not come up with regulation to stop tank holding, stop wildcapture and slaughter to get a showfish, stop breeding to get more entertainment. Just give back a safe haven for what is already in its own environment and use those areas to teach and entertain without the ownership. I think we have already seen the failure of factory farming and slaughterhouses being regulated and studied for safety and humane conditions.