Southwest Airlines: Stop Promoting SeaWorld Animal Cruelty
  • Petitioned Kevin Krone
  • Responded

This petition was delivered to:

Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer
Kevin Krone
Vice President Communication & Outreach
Linda Rutherford
Vice President Strategic Planning
Mike Delehant
Senior Vice President Customers
Teresa Laraba
Branding
Whitney Eichinger
Board of Directors
David W. Biegler
Board of Directors
J. Veronica Biggins
Board of Directors
Douglas H. Brooks
Board of Directors
William H. Cunningham
Board of Directors
John T. Montford
Board of Directors
Daniel D. Villanueva
SeaWorld Partners
Deana Duffek
Southwest Airlines
See response

Southwest Airlines: Stop Promoting SeaWorld Animal Cruelty

    1. Robin Merritt
    2. Petition by

      Robin Merritt

      Edwardsville, IL

  1.  
  2.   
July 2014

Victory

We did it! I love Southwest, but I stopped flying with them when I learned about their partnership with SeaWorld. I started my petition on Change.org because Blackfish got so many people talking about how these orcas are confined to tiny tanks, and then 32,000 people joined me. I’m so ecstatic. This just goes to show that companies do really value customers’ opinions, and I thank Southwest for listening to us and making this decision. Thank you, too! This is getting a lot of media coverage and so much of it talks about my petition which would have been nothing if not for your support.

If you've seen the film Blackfish, you already know that SeaWorld has a long history of abusing animals and covering up injuries sustained by trainers. Southwest Airlines has been a cheerleader for this cruelty by partnering with SeaWorld for 25 years -- offering deals on flights and promotions to customers who attend SeaWorld. Now that SeaWorld's inhumane practices are in the spotlight, I'm asking the airline to stop partnering with SeaWorld immediately.

There are so many problems including abuse of Tilikum, the main breeding male orca, who was caught in the wild when he was just 2 years old and has since been stressed out, isolated, and pushed to the point of eventually killing a trainer. Orcas in captivity live miserable lives which are much shorter than those in the wild. Nakai, an orca at SeaWorld in San Diego had "a dinner plate-sized chunk" injury that many believe came from an attack from another orca at the facility. Another example is that orcas at SeaWorld have collapsed dorsal fins which does not happen in the wild where they belong. It's a sign of being physically and mentally unhealthy. In all, The Orca Project reports that "37 orcas have died in captivity at SeaWorld's 3 parks."

The New York Times describes some of the footage from Blackfish as: "bleeding whales, flanks raked by the teeth of their fellow captives; a trainer crushed between two gigantic beasts with only his wet suit holding him together; another trainer dragged repeatedly to the bottom of a pool until he manages to escape."

On top of all this, SeaWorld is currently waging a battle to bring wild caught beluga whales into the US from Russia even though the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) denied the permit due to concerns of the animals' welfare. More than a dozen belugas have already prematurely died in SeaWorld's 'care' but they still want to capture more wild animals. The shameful list of SeaWorld's unethical treatment of animals can go on and on.

I have flown on Southwest as recently as this year and was even considering getting one of those Southwest Airlines mileage credit cards, but no more -- Southwest needs to understand that they are promoting animal cruelty seen in Blackfish if they continue to partner with SeaWorld as they have done for the last 25 years. They do promotional deals, sent out joint-press releases patting each other on the back, and are working hand in hand to profit from the misery of animals exploited for SeaWorld.

Tilikum and the other animals at SeaWorld deserve better, and that will start to happen when SeaWorld feels wide public action. We have the awareness, now let's get active!

Southwest Airlines has a choice. Will it support the animal cruelty at SeaWorld or make a compassionate choice to end this partnership of cruelty?

Please sign my petition.

To:
Kevin Krone, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer
Linda Rutherford, Vice President Communication & Outreach
Mike Delehant, Vice President Strategic Planning
Teresa Laraba, Senior Vice President Customers
Whitney Eichinger, Branding
David W. Biegler, Board of Directors
J. Veronica Biggins, Board of Directors
Douglas H. Brooks, Board of Directors
William H. Cunningham, Board of Directors
John T. Montford, Board of Directors
Daniel D. Villanueva, Board of Directors
Deana Duffek, SeaWorld Partners
Southwest Airlines
Stop Supporting SeaWorld Cruelty.

Southwest Airlines has a choice. Will it support the animal cruelty at SeaWorld or make a compassionate choice to end this partnership of cruelty?

Sincerely,
[Your name]

Recent signatures

    News

    1. American Express is now cheerleading for SeaWorld

      Robin Merritt
      Petition Organizer

      Hey everyone. My friend recently found out that American Express is a corporate partner to SeaWorld and started a petition that I hope you will sign.

      https://www.change.org/p/american-express-stop-promoting-seaworld-animal-cruelty

      I don't know why they want to make money from animal cruelty, but we convinced Southwest Airlines to end its partnership. I know we can politely tell American Express why we're so upset and encourage them to stop working with SeaWorld, too.

      Will you please take a minute to sign and share?

      https://www.change.org/p/american-express-stop-promoting-seaworld-animal-cruelty

      Thanks.

      -Robin

      American Express: Stop Promoting SeaWorld Animal Cruelty

      American Express is one of SeaWorld's newest corporate partners. Earlier this year, they became the "official card" of SeaWorld, and we need to tell...

    2. We won!

      Robin Merritt
      Petition Organizer

      Hey everyone,

      We did it!

      I love Southwest, but I stopped flying with them when I learned about their partnership with SeaWorld. I started my petition on Change.org because Blackfish got so many people talking about how these orcas are confined to tiny tanks, and then 32,000 people joined me.

      I’m so ecstatic. This just goes to show that companies do really value customers’ opinions, and I thank Southwest for listening to us and making this decision.

      Thank you, too! This is getting a lot of media coverage and so much of it talks about my petition which would have been nothing if not for your support.

      http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-07-31/southwest-seaworld-end-partnership-after-animal-petition.html

      http://www.usatoday.com/story/todayinthesky/2014/07/31/southwest-seaworld-marketing-promotion-agreement-ended/13413997/

      http://www.orlandosentinel.com/business/os-southwest-seaworld-20140731,0,4071434.story

      Thank you!

      -Robin

    3. Reached 30,000 signatures
    4. Decision-maker Southwest Airlines responds:

      Southwest Airlines

      Southwest has a longstanding relationship with SeaWorld that is based on travel and bringing families together. We are currently in a multi-year contract with SeaWorld, and we are not contemplating changes to that at this time. We are en...


    5. Reached 25,000 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Amber Maag SHERWOOD PARK, CANADA
      • 2 months ago

      Enough with the animal cruelty! No more!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Anthony Pendley PERKASIE, PA
      • 2 months ago

      Seaworld should have seen their error and closed a long time ago. Their collective greed has not only killed far too many people and animals, but have lied to youth worldwide. Any company that puts money above the preservation of intelligent life has earned my absolute hatred.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Holly Craig AUSTRALIA
      • 2 months ago

      whales of any kind should not be kept in this horrible conditions.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Ashley J Miranda NORTHRIDGE, CA
      • 2 months ago

      I have always been a Southwest Customer but I have no problem looking elsewhere for my travels so long as animal cruelty is being exploited for the base of marketing.It's just wrong plain and simple.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Corrine Rosenfeld BOCA RATON, FL
      • 2 months ago

      Very important that we stop torturing these animals

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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