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Sunday, April 07, 2013

Tampa Bay Rays apologize for mascot holding offensive sign

I am sorry for holding up the funny, offensive sign.

Jim Furtado Posted: April 07, 2013 at 08:29 AM | 206 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: rays

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   101. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:28 PM (#4407611)
Granted I don't know exactly what "spinning out Elliot" means.


Bump...

...ing another car in a manner that causes it to go into a tailspin.
   102. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:32 PM (#4407614)
Not really, no. He was a zookeeper who made TV programs about animals, like an Australian version of Jack Hanna. This isn't one of the guys from "Jackass".


I saw a show where he visited the US Southwest and he was running around out in the desert, grabbing unsuspecting critters by the tail to hold them up in front of the camera... I kept hoping one of the rattlesnakes he did this to would bite him.
   103. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:33 PM (#4407617)
Everybody hoped that. That is why his show was so popular.
   104. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:39 PM (#4407622)
Swedish/johnny

sure animals can learn. but to take a single event and extrapolate that now the animal 'has learned' and therefore is more dangerous is a varying riff on the the jungle book's discussion of maneating tigers

animals take time and repetition to learn. would they try again? (if they actually tried the first time) sure. but one would think a trained professional would be ready. and ready again. and ready again.

the 'kill a human you must die' is just bad policy. it seems based in man's inability to accept consequences.

or worse yet it's just done for pr purposes. the tiger mauled someone who fell into the enclosure so the tiger needs to die to satisfy the victim's family. meaning it's liability concerns and not anything zoological.

boooooo
   105. PreservedFish Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:40 PM (#4407625)
That show was so terrible. He'd be antagonizing some reptile, in the desert, surrounded by nothing, and then it would switch to a camera angle from the reptile's point of view. So sloppy.
   106. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:42 PM (#4407631)
Everybody hoped that. That is why his show was so popular.


Kind of like NASCAR, where people watch them drive around in circles until one of them (or someone in the stands) dies.
   107. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:42 PM (#4407632)
All "reality" shows are staged. It ain't just the Kardashians that are faked.
   108. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:51 PM (#4407641)
Irwin is defended as being a "conservationist" and "animal lover" or what not. And that may or may not be. But he was also going around antagonizing the animals for show. So there is no complete defense of him; at best it's a partial one.
   109. PreservedFish Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:53 PM (#4407645)
I own a copy of this book: The Man-Eaters of Kumaon.

A tiger on a fresh kill, or a wounded tiger, or a tigress with cubs, will occasionally kill human beings who disturb them; but these tigers cannot, by any stretch of imagination, be called man-eaters, though they are often so called. Personally I would give the tiger the benefit of the doubt once, and once again, before classing it as a man-eater.


So there you go, from a true expert on man-eating animals. Three strikes and you're out.
   110. vortex of dissipation Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:54 PM (#4407647)
Everybody hoped that. That is why his show was so popular.


Kind of like NASCAR, where people watch them drive around in circles until one of them (or someone in the stands) dies.


I don't think that most real racing fans think that accidents are "cool". I certainly don't. I love the skill shown by drivers who can race cars at high speed, and I love to see exciting racing, but I never, ever like to see an accident. I do feel a sense of relief when a big accident happens and a driver walks away unscathed, but that's about it. I want racing to be as safe as possible for all concerned. There may be a small minority of fans who think that crashes are thrilling, but I think they're in the decided minority.

It's also worth noting that Earnhardt is the only driver who has been killed in a Sprint Cup race (the highest level of NASCAR) in over 20 years, and that the last driver's death in a Formula One race was Ayrton Senna in 1994. There have been deaths in other series, most notably IndyCar champion Dan Wheldon two years ago, but thankfully it doesn't happen that often.
   111. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:57 PM (#4407651)
He was filming a documentary called "Ocean's Deadliest" (an all too appropriate name as it turned out), and as part of that he was swimming on top of a stingray, and if he wasn't intentionally effing with it, at best he was bothering it to the point where it felt trapped, and it lashed out.


Philippe Cousteau, with whom Irwin was working on the documentary in question: "...we were looking at these animals that people think of as, you know, dangerous and deadly monsters, and they're not. They all have an important place in the environment and in the world. And that was what his whole message was about. And I know all of us will continue to fight to bring that message to everyone." -Link.

Bull-nose rays can hurt you with their tails, but being killed by one is pretty much a million-to-one shot. If that barb had gone into his chest an inch to the left or the right, it would have gotten stuck on his rib cage, and he'd be fine.

I disagree. He made a big show (both literally and figuratively) of effing with animals, particularly crocodiles, in order to... well, I don't know why, exactly, since I'm not Irwin. Prove that he could? Make money? Become a celebrity? I just know that he did it.

Hanna doesn't go around screwing with animals.


In his irreverent, rambling style, Hanna told the crowd about what must have been his most-memorable appearance on David Letterman’s TV show in the 1980s. Hanna appeared with a 35-pound beaver he had borrowed from another zoo. Things were going along swimmingly, he said, when the beaver — frightened by an unexpected burst of music from Letterman’s band — bit into the meat of Hanna’s left hand with its large front incisor. Hoping to keep the embarrassing incident to himself, Hanna hustled off the stage with the offending animal, his hand bleeding furiously. But he had to return onstage with two electric eels, so he quickly wrapped a paper towel around his hand and stuck it in a rubber glove to hide the wound. “By this time,” Hanna related, “I’m about ready to vomit.” Still, he went on with the eels. As blood seeped out of the glove, Letterman realized what was going on and quickly wrapped up the segment. Hanna walked quickly to a hospital six blocks away. Entering the emergency room, he realized that his standard khaki shirt was covered in blood. “We’ve got a shooting victim!” an emergency-room worker yelled. “No,” Hanna yelled back. “I was bitten by a beaver!” - Kathy Lynn Gray, The Columbus Dispatch, April 8, 2013.

Jack Hanna is also a man who once pepper-sprayed a wild bear in the face, and there was an incident at his farm in the 1970s where a little boy got his arm torn off by a lion.

When you work with wild animals, there's always a chance of something going wrong. It's just part of the job.
   112. PreservedFish Posted: April 08, 2013 at 02:58 PM (#4407653)
(Regarding #109) With that said, the author made a living of exterminating tigers and leopards that had the blood of dozens or hundreds of humans on their paws, so, yeah, it does look like man-eating can be a pretty serious thing when it's legit.
   113. Mike A Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:07 PM (#4407669)
I certainly didn't agree with Irwin's 'tactics,' but the big picture was he introduced wildlife conservationism to a younger generation. People, especially kids, loved his over-the-top personality and the whole spectacle. So, I tend to think his good outweighed his bad, which is similar to how I feel about zoos.

Though I'm not above laughing at the Rays' joke, it probably wasn't particularly appropriate for the setting. A lot of kids at the game grew up celebrating Steve Irwin and were hit hard by his death (plus, Irwin himself has two kids). I mean, if Mr. Rogers were killed in a bizarre tiger attack, you wouldn't expect the Detroit Tigers to make jokes about it. Hopefully.

As a side, I've swum with stingrays a number of times. I've seen friends step on them, and it wasn't pretty. But to be killed by one is still a million to one shot, as noted.

   114. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:10 PM (#4407673)
Jack Hanna is also a man who once pepper-sprayed a wild bear in the face, and there was an incident at his farm in the 1970s where a little boy got his arm torn off by a lion.

Not seeing the connection between this kind of stuff and Irwin purposefully pissing off wild animals for entertainment purposes.
   115. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:11 PM (#4407675)
I certainly didn't agree with Irwin's 'tactics,' but the big picture was he introduced wildlife conservationism to a younger generation. People, especially kids, loved his over-the-top personality and the whole spectacle. So, I tend to think his good outweighed his bad, which is similar to how I feel about zoos.

What in the world did Steve teach little kids with his TV shows? The stuff was pure brain candy. This kind of junk doesn't teach anything to anyone.

A lot of kids at the game grew up celebrating Steve Irwin and were hit hard by his death

And they would be teenagers or adults by now. 7 years.
   116. Rants Mulliniks Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:11 PM (#4407676)
Jack Hanna always struck me as not very bright, sort of like the Bob Vila of animal shows.
   117. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:17 PM (#4407685)
Ray (#95): Yes, Earnhardt was both a spectacularly skilled and a notoriously dirty driver. But he died in a wreck caused by his engaging in a particular activity that, while dangerous, was and is routine to all NASCAR drivers, at least at Daytona and Talladega.
   118. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:18 PM (#4407687)
Speaking of animal shows, I really miss the old style animal docs they used to have on PBS all the time when it was just a narrator and then a lot of film of animals. Animal Planet seems to be annoyed they even have to show animals anymore and most of their shows seem to revel in killing them anyway. Planet Earth was fantastic but that style of nature documentary used to be more common (if not quite the same quality. That Planet Earth footage is something else.)

   119. BDC Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:29 PM (#4407694)
I was – actually I was in the backwoods of Georgia, but presumably they show this show everywhere – I was at a hotel last week and the affable innkeeper turned on Swamp People on the History Channel. The whole damn show seemed to consist of these morons shooting alligators. Well, maybe they weren't morons, they may have been sensitive and intelligent guys, but what they were doing seemed to be the most ####### pointless mayhem possible. What is the appeal of this show? At least Lady Hoggers purport to be doing a public service.
   120. Mike A Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:32 PM (#4407698)
What in the world did Steve teach little kids with his TV shows? The stuff was pure brain candy. This kind of junk doesn't teach anything to anyone.

To quote David Attenborough: "Steve taught (children) how wonderful and exciting (the natural world) was, he was a born communicator....he spent a lot of his time and money in nature protection and calling people's attentions to the danger the natural world is in, so all credit to him."

And I think there's something to that...how many kids watch animal shows these days? Irwin, for all his faults, was popular and introduced kids to a world many of them will never see...and pushed for the importance of preserving that world even though many don't live in it.

But like myself, Attenborough was not always enamored with Irwin's methods: "I was uncomfortable about some of his stunts. Even if animals aren't aware that you are not treating them with respect, the viewers are." Like anything, there's a lot of grey areas. I tend to look at his good side a bit more, but can understand the criticism.

I'm a wildlife/nature photographer, and whether I'm in my kayak or hiking backcountry, I try to be respectful to the animals...but also realize I'm still scaring them (perhaps not to the extent of Irwin, but it's still an intrusion.) A couple of days ago I was shooting a baby alligator nest, and I'm trying to judge how close is too close. Or whether I should even be there.
   121. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:35 PM (#4407702)
I worked around domesticated animals for 60 odd years and I only mixed it up with them when necessary. I certainly didn't invite a showdown. that's just stupid

a wild animal a 100 times more so

a 1000 times
   122. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:36 PM (#4407706)
Philippe Cousteau, with whom Irwin was working on the documentary in question: "...we were looking at these animals that people think of as, you know, dangerous and deadly monsters, and they're not.


This is false on its face, isn't it? I mean, when was the last time a butterfly or hummingbird or salmon killed someone?
   123. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:39 PM (#4407708)
Not seeing the connection between this kind of stuff and Irwin purposefully pissing off wild animals for entertainment purposes.


a) You're acting like "pissing off" the animals was the primary purpose of what he did, rather than filming a TV show about animals and animal behavior. You think all those baby lions and tigers and leopards that Hanna takes on TV with him are thrilled by the experience?

b) If you don't see any similarity between Hanna interacting with an unfamiliar animal under uncontrolled circumstances, being attacked, and sustaining an injury that can on rare instances be fatal (if the bite severed the radial or ulnar artery, for instance), and what happened to Irwin, then I guess there's no point in continuing to talk with you about this.
   124. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:43 PM (#4407716)
What in the world did Steve teach little kids with his TV shows? The stuff was pure brain candy. This kind of junk doesn't teach anything to anyone.


As evidenced, I believe, by the continuous need following his death to point out that, no no, you don't understand, he was a "conservationist."
   125. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:44 PM (#4407718)
a) You're acting like "pissing off" the animals was the primary purpose of what he did


Perhaps that's because it was.
   126. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:45 PM (#4407719)
I mean, when was the last time a butterfly or hummingbird or salmon killed someone?


I dunno. This guy?

More seriously, while I don't think you have much to worry about from butterflies, you're still much less likely to be killed by a bull nose stingray than by some animals that most people would consider to be relatively safe, like a random domesticated dog. How many times have you seen someone bend down to pet a dog walking on a leash in a public park? One of my co-workers did that and it bit her on the face - she ended up needing plastic surgery to fix the damage.
   127. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:48 PM (#4407725)
Perhaps that's because it was.


Then why did he go to all the trouble of opening a zoo and creating and filming a TV show, if all he wanted to do was wrestle and subdue crocodiles? That's a hell of a lot of work. Bruce Aven used to wrestle alligators in his spare time, but he didn't make a big thing out of it.
   128. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:51 PM (#4407729)
What in the world did Steve teach little kids with his TV shows? The stuff was pure brain candy. This kind of junk doesn't teach anything to anyone.


I got interested in animals mainly because as a little kid I thought it was cool on Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom when Jim would lasso an alligator or lasso a leopard or lasso whatever the hell he was lassoing this week. I also liked footage of predators killing things. Only later did I graduate to David Attenborough and Nature and others of the sort of shows Shooty mentions in #118 (and then to actually going out in the woods and looking at critters). Kids can be roped into loving animals through their favorite things, mainly mayhem and violence.

I think that Irwin went overboard with this sort of thing, but the part of me that wants you off of my lawn thinks that he was just taking the bravado parts of Wild Kingdom and increasing the idiot factor enough to keep pace with the general culture.

P.S. And when Attenborough dies I am going to weep bitter tears. That man has done more to get people interested in animals (and plants!) than just about anyone ever.
   129. The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: April 08, 2013 at 03:53 PM (#4407732)
A's to do list:

1: Actively campaign for a new stadium in San Jose.

2: Deny to everyone that you are actively campaigning for a new stadium in San Jose
   130. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:00 PM (#4407737)
b) If you don't see any similarity between Hanna interacting with an unfamiliar animal under uncontrolled circumstances, being attacked, and sustaining an injury that can on rare instances be fatal (if the bite severed the radial or ulnar artery, for instance), and what happened to Irwin, then I guess there's no point in continuing to talk with you about this.

The pepper spraying incident wasn't as a form of entertainment. He was walking through a park when some other hikers were attacked by the bear. He fended off the bear with pepper spray. How is that similar to what Irwin did?

The kid getting his arm ripped off by a lion happened because a young kid wandered away from his parents and they weren't paying close enough attention to their child. It wasn't Jack pulling a lion by its tail in front of a kid.


Irwin purposefully antagonized animals and creatures with the sole intent of getting good film. He had no justifiable reason to grab a snake or wrestle with a crocodile. He did it to make money, plain and simple.

Thus. . .
a) You're acting like "pissing off" the animals was the primary purpose of what he did, rather than filming a TV show about animals and animal behavior. You think all those baby lions and tigers and leopards that Hanna takes on TV with him are thrilled by the experience?




Yes. That was the primary purpose of what he did. He became famous and made money by carving out a niche in the TV industry. He was the guy who would wrestle a croc or jump on snakes.

As for baby lions and tigers being thrilled. I'd say probably. But even if they weren't it is still different. Jack didn't go into the wild capture a baby lion and then drag it onto Carson. Those baby lions were generally raised under human control nor did he actively try to piss them off. That wasn't his schtick. If he had an animal that was agitated he generally wouldn't bring it out or at least he would say that while he was in front of the camera.
   131. vortex of dissipation Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:01 PM (#4407738)
P.S. And when Attenborough dies I am going to weep bitter tears. That man has done more to get people interested in animals (and plants!) than just about anyone ever.


In 2006, the BBC held a poll to see whom the public thought was the greatest living British icon. David Attenborough won the poll, which tells you all you need to know about how revered he is in Britain.
   132. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:03 PM (#4407740)
Speaking of animal shows, I really miss the old style animal docs they used to have on PBS all the time when it was just a narrator and then a lot of film of animals. Animal Planet seems to be annoyed they even have to show animals anymore and most of their shows seem to revel in killing them anyway. Planet Earth was fantastic but that style of nature documentary used to be more common (if not quite the same quality. That Planet Earth footage is something else.)

Speaking of cable networks that are a shock to anyone who thinks that they have anything to do with the name associated with it, has anyone checked out the schedule of the National Geographic channel lately?
   133. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:05 PM (#4407741)
Then why did he go to all the trouble of opening a zoo and creating and filming a TV show, if all he wanted to do was wrestle and subdue crocodiles?

Well, for starters he didn't. His dad opened the zoo in 1970.
   134. PreservedFish Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:09 PM (#4407742)
No one ever expects the butterfly.
   135. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:10 PM (#4407745)
Then why did he go to all the trouble of opening a zoo and creating and filming a TV show, if all he wanted to do was wrestle and subdue crocodiles?

1: His parents opened the Zoo

2: He created and filmed a TV show to

wait for it

MAKE MONEY
   136. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:12 PM (#4407746)
Speaking of cable networks that are a shock to anyone who thinks that they have anything to do with the name associated with it, has anyone checked out the schedule of the National Geographic channel lately?


What pray tell, is "Wicked Tuna?"
   137. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:17 PM (#4407749)
It was easy to see what Irwin had become at his core: someone who enjoyed antagonizing animals, particularly dangerous animals, for fun/money/fame/whatever. And people watching this were like, "Oh, he's an idiot, one day he'll probably be killed by one of these animals." And so one day he was. And when he was, there was a rush of people climbing over themselves to defend him.

   138. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:21 PM (#4407753)
As if people were idiots for thinking that he might one day get killed doing this. And when he did get killed, the claim was that people were _still_ idiots, because, hey, stingrays aren't dangerous, and, you know, he really wasn't messing with the stingray. Despite the fact that one of them had felt the need to drive its blade through his heart.

I mean, sure, the chances were low, etc. But when you #### with potentially dangerous animals all day long, all of a sudden the chances aren't so low, now are they? It was simple math that something was bound to go wrong one day.
   139. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:34 PM (#4407765)
has anyone checked out the schedule of the National Geographic channel lately?

No because, if you listen to their commercials, it's not "National Geographic" anymore. It's "NatGeo."

Because as near as I can tell, "National Geographic" is stodgy and dated while "NatGeo" is IN YOUR FACE and XTREME!!!
   140. BDC Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:50 PM (#4407773)
What pray tell, is "Wicked Tuna?"

Sounds like the famous two-man laugh riot every Friday night at the Carthage, Texas Community Dinner Theater.
   141. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:54 PM (#4407778)
The pepper spraying incident wasn't as a form of entertainment. He was walking through a park when some other hikers were attacked by the bear. He fended off the bear with pepper spray. How is that similar to what Irwin did?


It shows that the wilderness is the wilderness, and even someone like Jack Hanna (whom Ray was touting as being careful, in contrast to Irwin) can end up having a near-death experience, regardless of how careful he was being at the time.

The kid getting his arm ripped off by a lion happened because a young kid wandered away from his parents and they weren't paying close enough attention to their child. It wasn't Jack pulling a lion by its tail in front of a kid.


It was, again, showing that no matter how careful a guy like Jack Hanna might be, there is still always the potential for accidents when wild animals are concerned.

Irwin purposefully antagonized animals and creatures with the sole intent of getting good film. He had no justifiable reason to grab a snake or wrestle with a crocodile. He did it to make money, plain and simple.


The times that I saw his show, he wasn't just wrestling animals into submission, throwing them down, and saying, "Boom, #####! You just got served!" He gave information on the animal's characteristics, habitat, and behavior. If he snuck up on a crocodile and grabbed it, it was usually because it needed medical care or needed to be relocated or something like that, and throughout the whole process he'd talk about why he was approaching the crocodile in that particular way, and what kinds of behaviors the crocodile would display in order to demonstrate its attitude toward a human in its habitat, and then after it was subdued he'd point out notable physical features of the crocodile and talk about how those made it different from other animals. That's genuinely educational programming. And even though the show had "crocodile" in its name, there was a huge amount of programming about birds and turtles and small mammals/marsupials and other comparatively non-threatening species.

I'm sure he was happy that he was able to make money by doing something that he loved, but if you think he didn't have any genuine affection for the animals under his care, you're nuts. Just look at this.

As for baby lions and tigers being thrilled. I'd say probably. But even if they weren't it is still different. Jack didn't go into the wild capture a baby lion and then drag it onto Carson. Those baby lions were generally raised under human control nor did he actively try to piss them off. That wasn't his schtick.


A wild animal raised in captivity is still a wild animal. They don't stop being dangerous just because they weren't caught in the wild. Christ, here's a clip where Hanna brought an un-muzzled adult cheetah onto Piers Morgan's set. It's like three inches away from that lady's face. You think that could have turned out badly if it had gotten startled?

And people watching this were like, "Oh, he's an idiot, one day he'll probably be killed by one of these animals." And so one day he was.


He was killed by a stingray. That's not a referendum on his techniques for handling animals - it's a freak occurrence, like having a toy poodle bite you in the throat and sever your jugular.
   142. Publius Publicola Posted: April 08, 2013 at 04:56 PM (#4407781)
P.S. And when Attenborough dies I am going to weep bitter tears.


Yeah, me too. He's Cousteau's worthy successor. The things he captures of film are astonishing and amazing and confounding.
   143. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:00 PM (#4407786)
What pray tell, is "Wicked Tuna?"


A Red Sox fan who works on pianos.
   144. PreservedFish Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:04 PM (#4407793)
Irwin crying over the dead croc is YouTube gold.
   145. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:08 PM (#4407795)
has anyone checked out the schedule of the National Geographic channel lately?

No because, if you listen to their commercials, it's not "National Geographic" anymore. It's "NatGeo."

Because as near as I can tell, "National Geographic" is stodgy and dated while "NatGeo" is IN YOUR FACE and XTREME!!!


OK, I guess that'd explain their new logo.
   146. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:08 PM (#4407796)
It shows that the wilderness is the wilderness, and even someone like Jack Hanna (whom Ray was touting as being careful, in contrast to Irwin) can end up having a near-death experience, regardless of how careful he was being at the time.

So because occasionally something unforeseen can happen once you leave your home it is okay to wrestle a crocodile? We might as well all drive drunk. Afterall bad things can happen when driving.

The times that I saw his show, he wasn't just wrestling animals into submission, throwing them down, and saying, "Boom, #####! You just got served!" He gave information on the animal's characteristics, habitat, and behavior. If he snuck up on a crocodile and grabbed it, it was usually because it needed medical care or needed to be relocated or something like that, and throughout the whole process he'd talk about why he was approaching the crocodile in that particular way, and what kinds of behaviors the crocodile would display in order to demonstrate its attitude toward a human in its habitat, and then after it was subdued he'd point out notable physical features of the crocodile and talk about how those made it different from other animals. That's genuinely educational programming. And even though the show had "crocodile" in its name, there was a huge amount of programming about birds and turtles and small mammals/marsupials and other comparatively non-threatening species.

I'm sure he was happy that he was able to make money by doing something that he loved, but if you think he didn't have any genuine affection for the animals under his care, you're nuts. Just look at this.



So he says, it's amazing how many crocodiles needed his help. What about him picking up poisonous snakes? He was doing that for medical reasons?

A wild animal raised in captivity is still a wild animal. They don't stop being dangerous just because they weren't caught in the wild. Christ, here's a clip where Hanna brought an un-muzzled adult cheetah onto Piers Morgan's set. It's like three inches away from that lady's face. You think that could have turned out badly if it had gotten startled?



And the connection to Steve is?

Steve's whole schtick was to piss off the animals and put himself in "dangerous" situations for the titillation of the viewer. If he simply narrated filmed footage of animals he never would have gotten on the air.
   147. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:09 PM (#4407798)
The times that I saw his show, he wasn't just wrestling animals into submission, throwing them down, and saying, "Boom, #####! You just got served!" He gave information on the animal's characteristics, habitat, and behavior. If he snuck up on a crocodile and grabbed it, it was usually because it needed medical care or needed to be relocated or something like that


You and I must have watched a verey different selection of Irwin shows.

It was, again, showing that no matter how careful a guy like Jack Hanna might be, there is still always the potential for accidents when wild animals are concerned.


Which is a point against the "gee guys like Irwin shouldn't needlessly antagonize wild animals" camp?
The fact that you can be hit by lightning on a clear day does not mean that standing out in a thunderstorm holding a nine iron over your head sin't stupid.


   148. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:11 PM (#4407801)
He was killed by a stingray. That's not a referendum on his techniques for handling animals - it's a freak occurrence, like having a toy poodle bite you in the throat and sever your jugular.


If I knew stingrays were so murderous I wouldn't have spent so much time swimming around them. Seriously, in South Florida if you like snorkeling or diving or even just flopping around in the surf you'll run into scads of Atlantic rays and Eagle rays, some as big as card tables. I think I was warned to shuffle my feet while walking in the surf when I was like 6 years old.
   149. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:14 PM (#4407803)

It shows that the wilderness is the wilderness, and even someone like Jack Hanna (whom Ray was touting as being careful, in contrast to Irwin) can end up having a near-death experience, regardless of how careful he was being at the time.


I was touting Hanna as not being a jackass on tv, at least in the times I've seen him.
   150. Greg K Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:14 PM (#4407804)
In terms of promoting respect for animals at a young age:

As a 15 year old, Tom Green's appearance on Mike Bullard's talk show made a lasting impression on me.
   151. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:18 PM (#4407808)
If he snuck up on a crocodile and grabbed it, it was usually because it needed medical care or needed to be relocated or something like that


Uh-huh. Does this even pass the giggle test?
   152. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:26 PM (#4407814)
As a 15 year old, Tom Green's appearance on Mike Bullard's talk show made a lasting impression on me.


There was the time Penn and Teller had been on Letterman, and left a hat on Dave's desk...

He picked it up as/after they walked off, and a couple hundred cockroaches scurried every which way.

Penn explained the "trick" simply- the bugs were in a bag, the bag was in the hat, he opened the bag as he put the hat on the desk, the bugs stayed hidden under the hat because it was dark in there, light outside.

So on a return trip Letterman told Penn that he wasn't going to allow him to leave a hat, box, or anything else on his desk, to which Penn replied along the lines of, fine with us, we're comedians as much as we are magicians, so for our purposes a direct frontal assault works just as well...
   153. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:30 PM (#4407816)
Vlad, can you look at the second photo in this link - the one where Irwin is feeding a crocodile with one hand while holding his infant son with the other - and educate me as to precisely what "medical care" or "relocation services" he was providing to the crocodile, and what assistance his son was providing towards those ends?

If not, do you care to revise your presentation?
   154. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:31 PM (#4407819)
There was the time Penn and Teller had been on Letterman, and left a hat on Dave's desk...

He picked it up as/after they walked off, and a couple hundred cockroaches scurried every which way.


A couple of HUNDRED cockroaches? Whose hat did they use, Hideki Matsui's?
   155. spike Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:33 PM (#4407823)
   156. Greg K Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4407840)
So on a return trip Letterman told Penn that he wasn't going to allow him to leave a hat, box, or anything else on his desk, to which Penn replied along the lines of, fine with us, we're comedians as much as we are magicians, so for our purposes a direct frontal assault works just as well...

Unfortunately the Canadian celebrity talent pool isn't as deep as the US, so Bullard didn't really have much leverage with Green. He had him on his show three or four times after the live-shaving-of-the-raccoon-which-had-been-dead-for-several-days. Though to Tom's credit he didn't make Bullard throw up on air again.
   157. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 05:54 PM (#4407863)
Vlad, can you look at the second photo in this link - the one where Irwin is feeding a crocodile with one hand while holding his infant son with the other - and educate me as to precisely what "medical care" or "relocation services" he was providing to the crocodile, and what assistance his son was providing towards those ends?

Hell, according to that link there was apparently a rattlesnake on the stage of the Kids' Choice Awards that was desperately in need of medical attention. Luckily for the snake Steve was in attendance.
   158. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:05 PM (#4407870)
So he says, it's amazing how many crocodiles needed his help. What about him picking up poisonous snakes? He was doing that for medical reasons?


Sometimes, yeah. I've seen him catch dangerous snakes so they could be relocated from a location where they were likely to come into contact with people and injure them. I've also seen him capture snakes so they could be milked for their venom, to create antivenom. Here's an episode where he captures snakes and alligators... as an instructor for a class of prospective Army Rangers at a military training facility. Those kinds of things are perfectly reasonable motivations for doing that kind of stuff.

And the connection to Steve is?


Ray was putting Jack Hanna forward as a guy who did things safely and responsibly, but putting a potentially hazardous animal in an uncontrolled situation around untrained personnel is at least as dangerous (if not more so) as anything Irwin ever did. Irwin wasn't dragging crocodiles into the Late Night studio and dumping them onto Dave's desk.

Which is a point against the "gee guys like Irwin shouldn't needlessly antagonize wild animals" camp? The fact that you can be hit by lightning on a clear day does not mean that standing out in a thunderstorm holding a nine iron over your head sin't stupid.


Irwin wasn't "antagonizing" the ray that killed him. According to the crew, he never even touched it. He was just walking toward it through the water, and it freaked out and stabbed him. He didn't do anything that thousands of other people living on the coast don't do ever day.

Uh-huh. Does this even pass the giggle test?


Well, yeah. For instance, this clip with him wrestling crocodiles has him doing it as part of a scientific tag-and-release program for tracking crocodile behavior and habitat. That's a perfectly legitimate reason for doing so.

Vlad, can you look at the second photo in this link - the one where Irwin is feeding a crocodile with one hand while holding his infant son with the other - and educate me as to precisely what "medical care" or "relocation services" he was providing to the crocodile, and what assistance his son was providing towards those ends?


It was part of a regular public demonstration on crocodiles and crocodile behavior at the zoo. It's not something I'd do with kids, if I had any, but I don't think it's particularly remarkable that a guy would bring his son to work with him, and I generally think that I'd defer to the crocodile expert when assessing the risks associated with it. I used to go to my dad's work when I was a kid, and they had guns and high-powered lasers and heavy industrial machinery, all kinds of crazy ####, and nothing bad ever happened to me because he kept a close leash on me when I was there.
   159. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:12 PM (#4407878)
There are some Pols and PR firms who may want to consider hiring Vlad.
   160. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:15 PM (#4407880)
Hell, according to that link there was apparently a rattlesnake on the stage of the Kids' Choice Awards that was desperately in need of medical attention. Luckily for the snake Steve was in attendance.


Yeah, because it's not like Irwin had an entire TV series dedicated to veterinary science or anything like that. At 2:34 in this episode, for example, they're anesthetizing and conducting exploratory surgery on a snake at Irwin's zoo, in order to remove a tumor in its kidney. But #### him, right? He's just a stupid ####### for wanting to get kids interested in science and wildlife.
   161. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:16 PM (#4407884)
Ray was putting Jack Hanna forward as a guy who did things safely and responsibly, but putting a potentially hazardous animal in an uncontrolled situation around untrained personnel is at least as dangerous (if not more so) as anything Irwin ever did. Irwin wasn't dragging crocodiles into the Late Night studio and dumping them onto Dave's desk.

And your examples were Jack Hanna hiking through a park and seeing people get attacked by a bear and a little kid wandering into a lion's pen. Neither of which is in anyway similar to Steve purposefully pissing off wild animals just so he could get a 2.4 rating.
   162. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:17 PM (#4407886)
It was part of a regular public demonstration on crocodiles and crocodile behavior at the zoo. It's not something I'd do with kids, if I had any, but I don't think it's particularly remarkable that a guy would bring his son to work with him,


I didn't really expect this answer, but, well, we got it nonetheless.

This was similar to "bring your kid to work" day? I guess we should be thankful Irwin didn't work on the SWAT team or as a fireman or in the military or as a NASCAR driver.

and I generally think that I'd defer to the crocodile expert when assessing the risks associated with it


Just as we deferred to Siegfriend and Roy, and just as this very "expert" ended up understanding so little about how a stingray might kill him that he ended up getting killed by the stingray.

it. I used to go to my dad's work when I was a kid, and they had guns and high-powered lasers and heavy industrial machinery, all kinds of crazy ####, and nothing bad ever happened to me because he kept a close leash on me when I was there.


So he didn't let you play with a loaded weapon, then, or walk out on the firing range with you while people were firing their weapons, nor did he let you operate the industrial machinery, I imagine. I wonder why.

If my answers are dripping with sarcasm, that's because I believe I'm not getting serious answers from you in the first place.
   163. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:17 PM (#4407887)
There are some Pols and PR firms who may want to consider hiring Vlad.

If I ever get caught with a dead hooker in my backseat and 6 kilos of cocaine in my front seat I want Vlad as my PR guy.
   164. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:18 PM (#4407889)
Yeah, because it's not like Irwin had an entire TV series dedicated to veterinary science or anything like that. At 2:34 in this episode, for example, they're anesthetizing and conducting exploratory surgery on a snake at Irwin's zoo, in order to remove a tumor in its kidney. But #### him, right? He's just a stupid ####### for wanting to get kids interested in science and wildlife.

What does this have to do with dangerously holding a rattlesnake at an awards show?

I'll also add that according to Steve himself he wasn't doing this for the "kids". In order of importance for him it was the zoo animals, his zoo business, and finally people.
   165. PreservedFish Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:20 PM (#4407891)
Ray is obviously right that Irwin was a hypocrite and a jackass. But, characteristically, he seems unable to perceive the issue in anything less than stark black and white. Relationships with animals are complicated. My grandfather hunted ducks for decades. When he got too old for the pursuit he started painting loving oil portraits of ducks. He wasn't a reformed and repentant duck murderer; he loved ducks just the same when he was shooting them. I work with farmers and meat processors and butchers, and they have complicated relationships with animals too. And those are good, normal people. I have no doubt that Irwin's tears over that dead croc were real, because I also have no doubt that Irwin was kind of nuts. He surely had a touch of the mania of that wacko portrayed in Grizzly Man. That guy was brought to tears by his love of Alaskan bears and he did a lot of fervent and honest work promoting their cause - but to the bears he camped near he was nothing more than a nuisance, and, finally, a meal. I'm sure that Irwin saw no contradictions between his efforts to promote nature love, to rehabilitate sick animals, and to hook viewers by annoyingly messing with animals on camera.
   166. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:28 PM (#4407895)
Irwin wasn't "antagonizing" the ray that killed him. According to the crew, he never even touched it.


I won't presume they're lying about what he was doing when he got killed, but I won't not presume it either. They did have an interest in not painting him as someone who was molesting the stingray, and there was no need to trample on his grave at that point by making a further mockery out of him than he had already made out of himself.

The video was destroyed, and only a few people ever saw it.
   167. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:32 PM (#4407901)
And your examples were Jack Hanna hiking through a park and seeing people get attacked by a bear and a little kid wandering into a lion's pen. Neither of which is in anyway similar to Steve purposefully pissing off wild animals just so he could get a 2.4 rating.


And Jack Hanna borrowing a strange animal from a casual acquaintance, taking it into an uncontrolled situation, and getting bitten badly enough that he went into shock and headed straight to the hospital, where he was covered in so much blood that they thought he'd been shot.

Once again, what makes you think Irwin was deliberately pissing off the animals, rather than it just being a side effect of them being caught and manhandled? My cat gets furious when I trim his claws, but that doesn't mean that pissing him off is the whole point of the exercise. And what's more irresponsible? A professional herpetologist handling snakes and reptiles, or a zookeeper who puts a dangerous animal in a habitat to which a toddler can gain access with little or no effort? If you owned a pit bull and it mauled a neighbor kid, people would think you were criminally negligent - so how much higher should the standards be for control of a ####### lion?

Just as we deferred to Siegfriend and Roy, and just as this very "expert" ended up understanding so little about how a stingray might kill him that he ended up getting killed by the stingray.


That's like saying that an astronomer must not have known anything about stellar bodies because he was unlucky enough to get hit by a meteorite.

So he didn't let you play with a loaded weapon, then, or walk out on the firing range with you while people were firing their weapons, nor did he let you operate the industrial machinery, I imagine. I wonder why.


Yeah, and Irwin didn't tie a steak to his son and let him crawl into the habitat alone. He held onto the boy to make sure he didn't get into anything that he shouldn't.

If I ever get caught with a dead hooker in my backseat 6 kilos of cocaine in my front seat I want Vlad as my PR guy.


I have very reasonable rates!
   168. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:32 PM (#4407902)
If I ever get caught with a dead hooker in my backseat and 6 kilos of cocaine in my front seat I want Vlad as my PR guy.


This reminds me of a discussion on Howard Stern's show some years ago of how Dennis Rodman allegedly handled the situation of his wife finding him in bed with another woman.

The claim was that Rodman tried to convince his wife that she was imagining things. Basically a, what are you talking about, there is no woman here in the bed with me; I think you need some rest and a sleeping pill.
   169. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:34 PM (#4407907)
According to the articles the videotapes shows that Steve came over the top of the stingray and that is when it attacked him with its tail.
   170. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:37 PM (#4407912)
According to the articles the videotapes shows that Steve came over the top of the stingray and that is when it attacked him with its tail.


Yeah, I don't know where Vlad's "he was just walking towards it through the water" thing comes from. Vlad's description is at odds with the basic public facts on this.
   171. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:38 PM (#4407915)
What does this have to do with dangerously holding a rattlesnake at an awards show?


You were making fun of the idea that Irwin ever handled and subdued animals in order to provide medical treatment for them, so I showed you an example of Irwin handling and subduing a snake in order to provide medical treatment for it. Seems pretty relevant to me.

I'll also add that according to Steve himself he wasn't doing this for the "kids".


His appearance at a children's awards show had nothing to do with kids?

The video was destroyed, and only a few people ever saw it.


And some of those people were government employees, the staff at the coroner's office tasked with investigating his death. If the film crew had lied about the contents of the video, you don't think that would have come up?
   172. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:39 PM (#4407918)
Yeah, I don't know where Vlad's "he was just walking towards it through the water" thing comes from.


OK, swimming toward it. Big frickin' difference.
   173. Mike A Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:39 PM (#4407919)
From Philippe Cousteau: "I was with (Irwin) in his last few weeks. I was with him that morning and I never saw anything but the utmost care and love for all of the animals in everything that he did...Steve was not doing anything inappropriate. This was a freak accident. And I have been swimming with stingrays many times."

I guess Cousteau has reason to lie in this situation, but it's actually pretty easy to come too close to a ray/shark/whatever since you don't have complete body control in the water. My guess is Irwin got too close and the ray just got spooked. Cousteau then touched upon the broader point:

"I think if you want to talk about the exploitation and the encroachment upon wildlife we shouldn't be talking about a man who gave his life dedicated to the conservation of these animals. We should be talking about deforestation and unsustainable fisheries and the things that happen all over the world every day that are really detrimental to the natural world, not to this great man."

For some reason, Steve Irwin gets more heat than many things that actually *do* serious harm to wildlife beyond annoying a few crocodiles/snakes. I'm not saying Irwin's perfect by any means and some of the things he did bothered me as well, but as noted, this is a multifaceted issue.
   174. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:39 PM (#4407920)
And Jack Hanna borrowing a strange animal from a casual acquaintance, taking it into an uncontrolled situation, and getting bitten badly enough that he went into shock and headed straight to the hospital, where he was covered in so much blood that they thought he'd been shot.

If all Steve Irwin did was bring boas, ferrets, marmots, and such on to a show you might be on to something. But that wasn't his schtick. He purposefully put himself into dangerous situations unnecessarily for ratings.
   175. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:40 PM (#4407921)
Once again, what makes you think Irwin was deliberately pissing off the animals, rather than it just being a side effect of them being caught and manhandled?


1. Because deliberately pissing off the animals is what he did. Time and again.

2. Because, w/r/t the stingray in particular, since there are so few reported stingray deaths, a reasonable inference is that he was deliberately pissing off the stingray when he was killed.
   176. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:44 PM (#4407926)
From Philippe Cousteau: "I was with (Irwin) in his last few weeks. I was with him that morning and I never saw anything but the utmost care and love for all of the animals in everything that he did...


Well, full stop, because we all saw him do dangerous things with the animals, so I don't know what the point of this comment is.

Steve was not doing anything inappropriate. This was a freak accident. And I have been swimming with stingrays many times."


That's kind of what leads me to question whether he was doing something inappropriate -- because people do swim with stingrays and somehow manage to not get stabbed in the heart by one.
   177. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 06:47 PM (#4407929)
I guess Cousteau has reason to lie in this situation, but it's actually pretty easy to come too close to a ray/shark/whatever since you don't have complete body control in the water. My guess is Irwin got too close and the ray just got spooked. Cousteau then touched upon the broader point:

Which kind of makes him irresponsible. He and the film crew knew the stingray was there and he was purposefully interacting with it and when you don't respect your surroundings and what is going on bad things can happen.
   178. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 07:15 PM (#4407953)
He purposefully put himself into dangerous situations unnecessarily for ratings.


I'd like some evidence of this, please? Above and beyond the fact that he was handling snakes and crocodiles, of course, since pretty much all herpetologists do that.

Well, full stop, because we all saw him do dangerous things with the animals, so I don't know what the point of this comment is.


He did things that looked dangerous to you, but you aren't an expert on crocodiles or snakes. Are you? When you come down to it, how well-equipped are you to assess the level of risk associated with the things Irwin was doing? Is it really any higher than the risks taken by other people doing the same kinds of work off-camera? Or is it your position that nobody should work with crocodiles or poisonous snakes at all, in any capacity?

Because, w/r/t the stingray in particular, since there are so few reported stingray deaths, a reasonable inference is that he was deliberately pissing off the stingray when he was killed.


And given the low number of people killed by meteorites, if an astronomer were hit by one, the reasonable inference would be that he was pissing it off, too?
   179. cardsfanboy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 07:19 PM (#4407958)
And given the low number of people killed by meteorites, if an astronomer were hit by one, the reasonable inference would be that he was pissing it off, too?


Wouldn't a better analogy be a tornado hunter getting killed by a tornado? But yes, if you play with something dangerous, even if you are an expert, when it comes back and bites you in the ass, you kinda deserve it.

   180. cardsfanboy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 07:23 PM (#4407962)
   181. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 07:30 PM (#4407974)
He purposefully put himself into dangerous situations unnecessarily for ratings.

I'd like some evidence of this, please?


It wasn't my claim -- I've claimed that I don't know why the hell he was doing it, whether for ratings or thrill or money or out of insanity -- but I don't think it's so implausible a suggestion that one should be pushing back hard on it.

Well, full stop, because we all saw him do dangerous things with the animals, so I don't know what the point of this comment is.

He did things that looked dangerous to you, but you aren't an expert on crocodiles or snakes. Are you? When you come down to it, how well-equipped are you to assess the level of risk associated with the things Irwin was doing?


More equipped than Irwin was. Obviously.

Or is it your position that nobody should work with crocodiles or poisonous snakes at all, in any capacity?


No, that's not my claim, but please give up the "work with" part of this. He was antagonizing them.

And given the low number of people killed by meteorites, if an astronomer were hit by one, the reasonable inference would be that he was pissing it off, too?


I'm actually receptive to this argument. But since (a) he spent his life antagonizing dangerous animals, (b) he had a camera rolling at the time, and (c) he was one of the rare people killed by a stingray in this fashion, it's a fair question whether he was antagonizing it. Why you would find that question so out of bounds I cannot say.
   182. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 08:18 PM (#4408010)
More equipped than Irwin was. Obviously.


Why is that obvious? He wasn't killed by a dangerous animal. He was killed by a ray.

He was antagonizing them.


Once again, I'd like some evidence that he was unnecessarily antagonizing the animals.

Why you would find that question so out of bounds I cannot say.


Because there's film of it, and according to every account of the film, he wasn't provoking the ray in any unusual fashion. And rays aren't "dangerous animals" any more than taking a shower or shaving is a "dangerous activity". You've got actual evidence on one side, and your suspicion on the other, and you're treating them with equal weight.
   183. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 08:19 PM (#4408012)
Wouldn't a better analogy be a tornado hunter getting killed by a tornado?


No, because tornadoes are much more dangerous than stingrays.

But yes, if you play with something dangerous, even if you are an expert, when it comes back and bites you in the ass, you kinda deserve it.


He wasn't "playing with" the ray. He didn't touch it at all (well, up until it stabbed him, anyway).
   184. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 08, 2013 at 08:27 PM (#4408014)
"I think if you want to talk about the exploitation and the encroachment upon wildlife we shouldn't be talking about a man who gave his life dedicated to the conservation of these animals. We should be talking about deforestation and unsustainable fisheries and the things that happen all over the world every day that are really detrimental to the natural world, not to this great man."


This man sounds like a communist who hates America and wants us all to live in huts and starve.
   185. cardsfanboy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 08:59 PM (#4408041)
Once again, I'd like some evidence that he was unnecessarily antagonizing the animals.


Go to my link in post 180. Are you trying to tell me that isn't antagonizing the animal?
   186. cardsfanboy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 09:00 PM (#4408043)
No, because tornadoes are much more dangerous than stingrays.


No analogy is perfect, but the tornado is much more accurate than the meteorite analogy, which was silly.

   187. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: April 08, 2013 at 09:14 PM (#4408047)
Honestly, why can't Irwin have been a guy who loves animals and is primarily interested in their well-being, preserving their habitats, studying them, and educating people about them? And also be a guy who decided to have a TV show where he could do some of those things while making some money, becoming famous (which will actually help with the other stuff), and yes, showing off?

My god, there's a world in between "Ghandi for animals" and "Jeffrey Dahmer torturing creatures". Irwin seemed much, much closer to the former.
   188. cardsfanboy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 09:25 PM (#4408054)
Honestly, why can't Irwin have been a guy who loves animals and is primarily interested in their well-being, preserving their habitats, studying them, and educating people about them? And also be a guy who decided to have a TV show where he could do some of those things while making some money, becoming famous (which will actually help with the other stuff), and yes, showing off?


Is anyone saying that he wasn't? I thought the debate was whether he cashed in on high risk actions and therefore his ending was somewhat expected.
   189. McCoy Posted: April 08, 2013 at 09:46 PM (#4408065)
This weird either or that some are putting forth is just kind off odd. Plenty of people "love" and do terrible things in the name of that love. So what if Steve loved animals? How does that change the fact that he pissed off animals for his own enrichment?
   190. Bourbon Samurai Posted: April 08, 2013 at 11:58 PM (#4408145)
Vlad seems to be the only person in this thread who ever actually watched the show.
   191. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 09, 2013 at 12:28 AM (#4408155)
Honestly, why can't Irwin have been a guy who loves animals and is primarily interested in their well-being, preserving their habitats, studying them, and educating people about them? And also be a guy who decided to have a TV show where he could do some of those things while making some money, becoming famous (which will actually help with the other stuff), and yes, showing off?

My god, there's a world in between "Ghandi for animals" and "Jeffrey Dahmer torturing creatures". Irwin seemed much, much closer to the former.


This sounds like a "Hey, OJ was a great guy except for the two murders!" defense. No, I'm not claiming that killing two people is the same as being a jackass to an animal, but how does his love for animals erase the jackass part?
   192. Tom T Posted: April 09, 2013 at 12:36 AM (#4408157)
He purposefully put himself into dangerous situations unnecessarily for ratings.


I would disagree with McCoy's statement here. I think this was quite necessary for ratings. As noted earlier, you don't see any of the "traditional" animal shows on the cable channels these days (and not even all that commonly on PBS). I think Irwin knew his market and did what was necessary. I also believe he enjoyed it. And I don't think that combination leads to his supplanting snapper on the list of greatest monsters....

Also, keep in mind that Irwin was building his reputation in Australia, not in the US. That means that Paul Hogan, Australian Rules Football, and other cultural eccentricities are among the mix of influences for Steve and his show. Heck, Dominic Monaghan is now wandering around doing fairly similar things on his show on the BBC, but it sorely lacks the over-the-top enthusiasm for the animals in question that Irwin's show had...mostly just "we're going to try to find this rare critter and...oh, look...we found a poisonous snake to pick up and wave around!" (I doubt Dom will be guest appearing on the Wiggles for his wildlife work anytime soon....)

Irwin was a showman (i.e., pissed off animals for his own enrichment) AND made genuine contributions to conservation AND his death was, well, predictable in its grisly nature, if not in its actual execution. The number of animals he pissed off is certainly smaller than the number he (or at least his family's zoo) helped. As Greg Pope indicates in #187, this seems a lot closer to a "good" than an "evil".

If you're genuinely that offended about he's treating those crocs and snakes (on their behalf), I hope you are being at last somewhat internally consistent and doing work for HSUS or ASPCA (or heck, even PETA)...at least most of these folks try to prevent what is actual animal cruelty.
   193. Tom T Posted: April 09, 2013 at 12:41 AM (#4408160)
No, I'm not claiming that killing two people is the same as being a jackass to an animal, but how does his love for animals erase the jackass part?


I don't think he saying it does erase it (at least, I sure wouldn't feel it does). Just that it seems odd to argue against there being any positive value to Irwin's actions. (Admittedly, at this point in the discussion, such may not be YOUR argument, Ray.)
   194. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 09, 2013 at 12:43 AM (#4408161)
He purposefully put himself into dangerous situations unnecessarily for ratings.


I would disagree with McCoy's statement here. I think this was quite necessary for ratings.


I think you're misreading McCoy here. The "unnecessarily" goes with the first part of the sentence; McCoy, I believe, would agree that doing this was necessary for ratings - indeed, that that was the purpose.
   195. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: April 09, 2013 at 07:40 AM (#4408215)
Erase? Who said anything about erasing? I said that there was a scale. He didn't "spend his life antagonizing dangerous animals". He certainly did on occasion, for the show.
   196. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: April 09, 2013 at 08:39 AM (#4408231)
If you're genuinely that offended about he's treating those crocs and snakes (on their behalf), I hope you are being at last somewhat internally consistent and doing work for HSUS or ASPCA (or heck, even PETA)...at least most of these folks try to prevent what is actual animal cruelty.


I don't think McCoy is obliged to do this, though. Pointing out what he believes to be bad behavior doesn't mean the remediation of that behavior has to crack the top five (say) of his charitable works.
   197. McCoy Posted: April 09, 2013 at 09:09 AM (#4408245)
I'm not offended in the least by what Steve did. I don't think that was the issue.
   198. BFFB Posted: April 09, 2013 at 11:16 AM (#4408375)
Runyak Huntz
   199. Swedish Chef Posted: April 09, 2013 at 11:38 AM (#4408400)
Lamest two-minute hate ever.
   200. Rants Mulliniks Posted: April 09, 2013 at 11:52 AM (#4408413)
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