It was just a normal, boring evening when I was scrolling through Facebook watching funny cat videos (and groaning at the political posts my family seems to enjoy arguing about) when I came across something interesting. I clicked play on a video titled something like, “Large Shark Caught On Coast.” What I saw was four young men dragging a shark out of the water on what looks like a quiet shore. Me, being the optimistic person I am, thought, “Oh well, they’ll put him back in!” Then, the video ended and the men left the shark stranded on the sand.
For a second I was speechless. I almost refused to believe that this shark was taken out of the waves of the ocean to be left for dead on a beach. I thought back to a few months ago when a dolphin was taken out of the ocean and people took selfies with the animal; consequently, everyone freaked out because of the cruelty to animals. This is where I become confused. Why is it so important that we save that dolphin from dying in the water, but we treat a shark so differently? Was it because it was an endangered dolphin? Would we let an overpopulated species of dolphin die on the coast? I would like to think we wouldn’t.
The problem I have with this is that no one is talking about it. The person who reposted this video added a caption that was something like, “OMG so terrifying,” and I’d like to think she was talking about the four boys but I would probably be wrong. The comments on the video ranged something from “Wow! I would be so scared!” to “Great catch!” But, no one once asked, “Hey, why did they need to take it out of the ocean?”
Let me put it this way: Imagine you’re sitting at home minding your own business when suddenly your neighbor comes and drags you out of your own house by your ankles. Now imagine you’re sitting in you own front yard and you ask “Hey! What’s the big idea?!” and your neighbor just looks at you and says “I was scared to go in your house because you were in there. I feel safe now.” and proceeds to leave you out there—Seems fair.
Do you think God created the shark for you to tear it away from its home? No! If you’re scared to go into the ocean because of a creature who lives there, you have to leave. It’s not the sharks fault you gave yourself an invitation into its own home. Obviously you can’t just knock on the ocean and ask if anyone’s home because there will always be someone home.
So, next time you take a swim in the ocean, remember that you are a guest, not a host. You should treat the ocean just like you would treat anyone else’s home.