Animal activists protest outside SeaWorld San Diego: Group also took message to Lindbergh Field

SAN DIEGO - About 200 activists lined the streets outside SeaWorld on Sunday to discourage people from going into the park and also took their message to Lindbergh Field, hoping Southwest Airlines will cut its ties with SeaWorld.

They stood silently outside SeaWorld, but the message on their handwritten signs was loud and clear.

"What SeaWorld does is wrong and we want them to stop," said activist Ellen Ericksen.

The protesters gathered outside the park to inform the public about what they call animal cruelty at SeaWorld.

"The animals that are forced to perform in SeaWorld are abused and are aggressive," said Ericksen.

The group also protested outside the Southwest Airlines terminal at Lindbergh Field because of the airline's business ties with the theme park. As part of their cross-promotions partnership, Southwest put Shamu on the side of some planes.

Sunday's protest is one of many following the release of the documentary film "Blackfish," which is critical of orcas living in captivity, amid other online petitions.

"Every time we have a protest at SeaWorld, we will be at Southwest Airlines," said Ericksen.

In response to the protest, a spokeswoman for Southwest Airlines said in a statement, "We are currently under contract with SeaWorld, and we are not contemplating changes to that at this time. We are engaged with SeaWorld related to the recent concerns being raised."

In a statement, a spokesman for SeaWorld San Diego said, "To give this event some perspective, we've estimated only a few hundred protesters, however, we anticipate that more 17,000 people will visit SeaWorld today to enjoy all our park has to offer and be inspired by our animals."

Police were at both protests to make sure they were peaceful.

Print this article Back to Top