Monday, 17 January 2011

About F*&$ing Time!!

Gordon "Jeezus F@"$ing Chr!st" Ramsay aired his well promoted "Shark Bait" show last night on Channel 4. I've never really seen the point in getting that angry about how long it takes to boil an egg, or whatever else he swears about, but last night all his F'ing and blindings were well justified.
The show followed the shark fin trail from London's China Town through to a major fishing port in Taiwan and then on to Costa Rica. Despite some glaringly obvious staging on occasion, it has a been a long time coming getting major air time to the despicable and deeply disturbing trade of sharks fin.
The program really gets into its stride when Gordon visits Costa Rica and with the help of local conservationists, gets on board a small long lining vessel. The scenes are rightly gut wrenching, well done yet again Channel 4 for making a program that pushes us out of our comfort zone. If anyone managed to watch the large hammerhead get finned alive and not cry inside, then there is no hope.
However, it is programs like this, and Hugh's Fearnley's Fish Fight that give us all hope, that the tide is starting to turn to a wider audience. This, surely, is the beginning of a better day.
Credit must also be given to Hugh Fearnley's no bullshit approach to his quarry in his final Fish Fight show on Thursday. The way he bludgeoned the hapless salmon farm manager about his lack of knowledge on wild feed percentages was a delight to see, and holding a Tesco head honcho to ransom under threat of legal action for labelling breaches, well, I'm sure I was not the only one in the country punching the air.
Momentum has begun. I remember when I first got involved in shark conservation back in 2005 wondering how long would it take before shark finning and other important marine conservation issues became widely supported in the way that the Save the Whale campaign did back in the mid 70's. Whilst the movement is gaining pace as celebrities take up the cause, those key organisations should not be forgotten that have been working since way back when, to make this happen, namely the Shark Trust and Bite Back being the most prominent British orgs holding the torch. Support them, they need it!

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