Why is it hard to do what's right?
We've all done not right things. And then wished we hadn't. We're human, we think. It'll be okay.
And it will.
But right is still hard, hard for people, hard for brands.
SeaWorld announced this week that it was ending its theatrical performances of Orcas at its San Diego location. Here's an excerpt from Monday's San Diego Union-Tribune:
Next year will be the last for the theatrical performances and coming in 2017 will be what SeaWorld Entertainment describes as an entirely new orca experience, designed to take place in a more natural setting.
A "more natural setting." You mean, like, the ocean?
Eureka! What if SeaWorld went all-in on what's right? What if it decided to acknowledge the scientific evidence about the detrimental effects of captivity on orcas -- if not the purely ethical questions that arise from the practice -- and anchored its logo on the rough edge of truth? Imagine what an excerpt from one of next year's daily editions of the San Diego Union-Tribune might sound like:
SeaWorld Entertainment announced, today, that it will build sanctuary-style viewing and research areas around the globe that will be open to the public and offer people of all ages the opportunity to witness various species of dolphins, humpback whales, gray whales, and orcas -- the cetaceans on which it built its global reputation -- in the wild. SeaWorld plans to open its first SeaSanctuary on Vancouver Island in the fall of 2018. Visitors will have the opportunity to engage in open water tours that will be led by teams of marine biologists and oceanographers who will educate visitors on native ecosystems and their inhabitants, including up-close encounters with pods of orcas prominent in the area. In addition, SeaWorld also announced that it will begin reintroducing and transitioning its healthy aquatic mammals back into their respective native habitats and become a "captive" facility only for those creatures that cannot survive in the wild due to injury or illness.
The late, great Yogi Berra might've put it this way, "Right isn't easy because it's hard."
Right requires sacrifice.