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Legal, Ethical & Social Values on Having Animals in Captivity


Submitted By juancochesa
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Nova Southeastern University
Wayne Huizenga Graduate School of Business & Entrepreneurship

Assignment for Course: MGT 5015 – Legal, Ethical, & Social Values In Business

Submitted to: Stephen Muffler

Submitted by: Juan Cochesa N01566041 350 NE 24th St APT 509 Miami, FL 33137 305 799 0736

Date of Submission: 03 / 16 / 2014

Title of Assignment: Legal, Ethical & Social Values on Having Animals In Captivity

CERTIFICATION OF AUTHORSHIP: I certify that I am the author of this paper and that any assistance I received in its preparation is fully acknowledge and disclosed in the paper. I have also cited any sources from which I used data, ideas of words, whether quoted directly or paraphrased. I also certify that this paper was prepared by me specifically for this course.

Student Signature: ___________________________


Instructor’s Grade on Assignment:
Instructor’s Comments: I. Introduction

II. Legal Section

A. Licensing Requirements
B. Accommodation
C. Nutrition
D. Sanitation and Disease Control
E. Veterinary Care
F. General Welfare
G. Safety and Security
H. Operations

III. Ethics Section

A. Utilitarian Ethical Analysis

B. Kantian Ethical Analysis

C. Aristotelian Ethical Analysis

IV. Social Responsibility Section

V. Conclusion

VI. References


Animals are one of the most important things in my life, I have dedicated and I will dedicate my life to animals. This is why this paper is so important for me, but I am sure it is also same as important to the world. Now a days Animals in captivity is something that people is staring at more, they are starting to realize that there is nothing moral or ethical in it. There are more than 400 amusement parks and attractions in the United States that have more than 290 million visitors per year (IAAPA). These parks in order to have Animals in Captivity for entertainment they should comply several rules and regulations, that are by the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions, the seven more important are: Licensing and requirements, accommodation, nutrition, sanitation and disease control, veterinary care, general welfare, safety and security and operations. For me these amusement parks are being unethical and immoral by only showing the good side of having killer whales in captivity to people, but to prove this a study following Kantian, Utilitarian and Aristotelian rules was made. The study concluded that in general having animals in captivity is not moral. Humans unfortunately have control of the earth, and the future of it, we are the managers of the world, and we decide what could happen with it, and exploiting has become our favorite pastime. The question may well become: Can humans be good managers without assuming the traditional role of exploiter?


People that do not support animals in captivity contend that it is morally wrong to remove animals from the wild and hold them, either because they believe that some animals have evolved sufficiently to obtain rights equal to those recognized for human beings, or because they consider animals are harshly harmed by life in captivity. While others that do support it, like businesses making money having animals for entertainment think that bringing animals into captivity causes opposing effects, these effects, on balance, are offset by such benefits as augmentation of human gratefulness for all animals, conservation of species, and advancement of knowledge. The purpose of this paper is to study more about animals in captivity, look the legal and ethic side of the matter and answer some questions like: is it legal to have animals in captivity, use them for entertainment and make money out of it? Is it moral? What are these businesses giving to the society in order to be called a socially responsible company? Currently some companies have the look of the people against animals in captivity; movies, papers, commercials and strikes all over the world are expressing their sentiments against these businesses that intend to make money handling animals for entertainment. Companies such as zoos and Marine entertainment like Sea World are being attacked more and more recently. (Johnson, 2002)
These companies are huge, and the theme park industry is increasing more and more year-to-year. It is almost impossible to attack one of these companies and achieve a winning statement against them. Here are some numbers that will picture the size of the industry and theme parks involved in this topic: * There are more than 400 amusement parks and attractions in the United States. * In 2010, approximately 290 million people visited U.S. amusement parks. * U. S. amusement parks and attractions generate approximately $12 billion in revenues and contribute approximately $57 million to the U.S. economy. * The United States amusement park industry provides jobs for more than 600,000 year-round and seasonal employees (100,000 year-round, 500,000 seasonal). * According to IAAPA's 2009 Family Entertainment Centers (FECs) State of the Industry survey, FECs experienced slight growth in 2008 with an average attendance of 196,532 an increase from
192,592 in 2007. * According to a 2011 IAAPA U.S. survey of adults: * 25 percent of Americans surveyed visited an amusement park within the last 12 months, with 43 percent of Americans indicating they plan to visit an amusement park within the next 12 months. * 64 percent of Americans reported that their last trip to an amusement park was a day trip and 27 percent say it was an overnight trip. * 28 percent of Americans said they would be interested in working for an amusement company. ( After seeing how many people believe and follow them, and how much money they make every year, it is hard to think that animals in there are been miss treated. But the reality is different. In addition to the unquestionable cruelty and inappropriateness of removing wild animals from their natural habitat and communities, keeping orcas in captivity dooms them to living their lives as mere attractions at theme parks and resort hotels, where they are obliged to perform meaningless tricks for food in front of huge crowds of screaming people. They are also forced to swim with tourists, are often hand-fed and petted by curiosity seekers. However, most of the time they are forced to swim endless circles in small, barren concrete tanks.
Orcas and other dolphins navigate by echolocation, but in tanks, the impacts from their own sonar bounce off the walls, driving some of them crazy. World-renowned oceanographer Jean-Michel Cousteau related the possession of orcas in tanks to “a person being blindfolded in a jail cell.” 
Trainers force marine mammals to learn tricks, often by withholding food and isolating animals that refuse to perform. One trainer at Hersheypark quit since she saw “a lot of frustrated animals that would die from ulcers.” A marine-mammal behavioral biologist in Seattle says, “Captive dolphins demonstrate a variety of stress-related behavior such as self-inflicted trauma, induced vomiting, and aggressiveness. Some captive dolphins have reportedly taken their own lives by hitting their heads against the sides of pools or by refusing to come up for air”. (Hoyt, 1992)
Many books and research papers have been done recently about this topic. But personally I would like to focus in one movie/documental that made me chose the subject for this paper, the movie Black Fish. It talks about how one Orca living in captivity called Tilikum, have killed more than 5 trainers in the past 20 years in Sea World and some other Marine Amusement Parks. All the audience of Sea World witnessed one of the most tragic deaths. On a live show, 20-year old Keltie Byrne, had slipped and fallen into the orca tank. Byrne was an exceptionally strong swimmer but she was no match for the aquarium's killer whales. "She tried to get back out and the other girl tried to pull her up, but the whale grabbed her back foot and pulled her under," eyewitness Nadine Kallen said to the press. "And then the whales -- they bounced her around the pool a whole bunch of times, and she was screaming for help. "They tried to grab her with sticks, but they couldn't get her," Kallen said. "And she finally didn't come up any more." One of the orcas in the Tank was Tilikum the sole male. Tilikum would later become infamous for the 2010 killing of SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau. (Cowperthwaite, 2013)

As you see it is not the first time that something like that has happened in an amusement park, more than 10 deaths have been registered and some haven’t for the sake of the companies. Meanwhile, in the wild, it has never been registered an attack of an Orca to a human. It is impressive what animals can do when they are not happy and comfortable, it becomes a way different “ball game”.
For these and many other reasons my real argument is emotional and sentimental. I believe, quite simply, that sentiment is one of the best reasons for saving not only some of these animals - but all of them.

Legal Section

In the U.S. the main Agency that controls and regulates the amusement park industry is the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA). It was founded in 1918 with the mission to “serve the membership by promoting safe operations, global development, professional growth, and commercial success of the amusement parks and attractions industry.” Here are some important points to explain the rules and regulations of Amusement Parks in the U.S.: * Amusement park standards are set by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) International, F-24 Committee on Amusement Rides and Devices. * ASTMI F-24 is comprised of consumer advocates, government officials, amusement park operators, ride manufacturers, and industry suppliers. * The committee helps to establish standards on design and manufacture, testing, operation, maintenance, inspection, quality assurance, and more. * These standards undergo frequent review and revision to keep up with new technologies, and have been adopted by many governmental jurisdictions. * Amusement parks are subject to state and local governmental codes, requirements, and safety inspections, and must pass rigorous inspections by insurance companies. * If regulations in specific states need to be augmented, IAAPA encourages such action and recommend using the detailed ASTM International ride safety standards as the basis of any regulations. * According to the Consumer Product Safety Council (CPSC), “The high level of expertise developed by state amusement ride officials and their willingness to share their investigative reports and their expertise have been invaluable in . . . preventing future ride incidents on a national level.” * 44 state governments regulate amusement parks. The six without state oversight are Alabama, Mississippi, Nevada, South Dakota, Wyoming, and Utah. These states contain few, if any amusement parks (Wyoming has no parks). * Amusement Park staff follows detailed manufacturer guidelines for inspection and safety, and many parks use outside specialty companies to periodically re-inspect rides. These inspections can take place on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis and they * ASTM International standards require fixed-site amusement industry operators and manufacturers report both incidents and ride-related defects, including notification of facilities when a ride develops a manufacturer-related safety issue. (

Many jurisdictions in the world have comprehensive, establishes, regulatory regimes in place that address the basic issues that arise when wild animals are kept in captivity. In other jurisdictions, the growth of a regime is underway. The following report describes requirements for the possession of captive wildlife in many of these jurisdictions. The requirements described relate to a range of considerations that are important to the possession of captive wildlife, for the welfare of the animals themselves as well as the security of the people, and the indigenous wildlife, who may intentionally or unintentionally come into contact with them. Eight different areas of concern emerged in the review of the existing regimes and therefore eight categories of standards are addresses. They are: 1. Licensing Requirements
2. Accommodation
3. Nutrition
4.Sanitation and Disease Control
5. Veterinary Care
6. General Welfare
7.Safety and Security
8. Operations
(Paquette, 2010)

To make the study less broad, the only jurisdiction that is going to be used to explain each one of the legal requirements is the United States:

1. Licensing Requirements:
In the United States, the Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) imposes the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) that is federal legislation governing human conduct in respect of captive animals, including wildlife. Individuals who show warm-blooded animals to the public must be registered or licensed as exhibitors with APHIS that guarantees that exhibitors comply with the AWA and its canons through licensing and regular reviews. A license is valid for one year. APHIS conducts searches for unlicensed amenities and makes unexpected inspections, as well as inspections in reply to public concern, at licensed facilities in order to ensure constant compliance with AWA standards. If an inspection reveals lacks in meeting the AWA standards, the inspector trains the exhibitor to correct the problems within a specified time frame. If the troubles remain, APHIS documents the deficiencies and might take legal action, including revocation of the license or imposition of fines. (Paquette, 2012)

2. Accommodation:
The federal AWA uses a number of procedures to regulate cage size. For animals, cages must have “sufficient space to allow each animal to make normal postural and social adjustments with adequate freedom of movement”. Conferring to this legislation, insufficient space may be demonstrated by: malnutrition, poor condition, debility, stress, or irregular behavior patterns. (Paquette, 2012)

3. Nutrition
The U.S. federal and state laws (California and Florida) deliver clear principles about the feeding of animals. Whether the individual in question is a primate, marine mammal, or some other animal, the diet must be “wholesome, palatable, and free from contamination, of sufficient quantity and nutritive value to maintain a healthful condition, prepared with consideration for age, species, condition and size” (AWA). Food containers must be reachable to all animals and if leading animals are fed with others, several feeding sites must be offered. If self-feeders are used, measures should be taken to avoid contamination, deterioration, molding or caking of food. (Paquette, 2012)

4. Sanitation and Disease Control
U.S. guidelines are quite complete and specific with regard to the regularity and means by which animal enclosures must be washed and sanitized. For instance, the AWA “outlines different sanitation requirements for primates, marine mammals and other warm-blooded animals. For example: For non-human primates, hard-surfaces must be spot-cleaned and sanitized daily, floors made of dirt or absorbent material such as sand must be raked with sufficient frequency to ensure the avoidance of contact with excreta, and contaminated material must be removed or replaced whenever raking does not eliminate insects, pests, vermin, odor, or disease. If species scent-mark, all surfaces must be spot-cleaned daily.”
State rules on sanitation and sickness control relate to all captive wildlife and are alike to those necessary under the federal AWA for primates and marine mammals. (Paquette, 2012)

5. Veterinary Care
The federal Animal Welfare Act outlines precise necessities with respect to tolerable veterinary care. Each licensed exhibitor needs to have a presence veterinarian under proper retainer. If the attending veterinarian works on a part-time or consultancy basis, there must be frequently booked visits to the facility and a inscribed program of veterinary care. Each facility must create and preserve, with the attending veterinarian, a database of care that meets five requirements: (1) the use of appropriate methods to prevent, diagnose, treat, and control diseases and injuries, and the availability of emergency, weekend, and holiday care; (2) the availability of appropriate equipment, personnel, services, and facilities to comply with these requirements; (3) daily observation of all animals to assess their health and well-being which, if not accomplished by the attending veterinarian, must instead be supplemented by direct and frequent communication with the veterinarian; (4) adequate guidance to staff involved in the care of animals regarding handling, immobilization, anesthesia, analgesia, tranquilization, and euthanasia; and (5) adequate pre- and post-procedural care in accordance with established veterinary practices. The attending veterinarian must review this animal care program at least once annually. (Paquette, 2012)

6. General Welfare:
The federal Animal Welfare Act forms specific necessities with respect to proper veterinary care. Each licensed exhibitor must have an attending veterinarian under formal retainer. If the presence veterinarian works on a part-time or consultancy basis, there must be frequently arranged visits to the facility and a written program of veterinary care.

Each facility must establish and maintain, with the attending veterinarian, a program of care that meets five requirements: (1) the use of appropriate methods to prevent, diagnose, treat, and control diseases and injuries, and the availability of emergency, weekend, and holiday care; (2) the availability of appropriate equipment, personnel, services, and facilities to comply with these requirements; (3) daily observation of all animals to assess their health and well-being which, if not accomplished by the attending veterinarian, must instead be supplemented by direct and frequent communication with the veterinarian; (4) adequate guidance to staff involved in the care of animals regarding handling, immobilization, anesthesia, analgesia, tranquilization, and euthanasia; and (5) adequate pre- and post-procedural care in accordance with established veterinary practices. The attending veterinarian must review this animal care program at least once annually. (Paquette, 2012)

7. Safety and Security
With regard to barriers and fences, the AWA only lists specific requirements with regard to non-human primates. Such animal enclosures must be surrounded by a perimeter fence that is of sufficient height to restrict animals the size of dogs, skunks, or raccoons from going under or through it. The distance between the perimeter fence and the primary enclosure must be sufficient to prevent physical contact between animals inside the enclosure and outside the perimeter fence. In Florida, that a fence a minimum of five feet in height and sufficient to deter entry by the public must be present around Class I or II wildlife enclosures. Further, all such enclosures must be equipped with a “safety entrance” which is defined as “a protected, secure area that can be entered by a keeper that prevents animal escape and safeguards the keeper, or a device that can be activated by a keeper that prevents animal escape and safeguards entry”. Enclosures must be anchored to prevent escape by digging or erosion and cages must be of sufficient strength for the species in question. (Paquette, 2012)

8. Operations
Federal and state requirements with respect to records are similar in that the main concern is the accessibility and clarity of such records to federal and state inspectors. Under the AWA, no exhibitor may destroy any records pertaining to an animal until one year after the animal’s death. Further, each exhibitor must allow APHIS officials to: (1) enter its place of business; (2) examine its records; (3) make copies of the records; (4) inspect and photograph animals, property, and facilities; and (5) have use of a table or other necessary facilities to conduct such matters. Federal law requires primary enclosures used to transport animals must: (1) be strong enough to comfortably and securely contain the animal and withstand normal rigors of transport; (2) contain no sharp points or edges; (3) be such that the animal cannot put any part of his/her body outside the enclosure; (4) allow the animal to be quickly and easily removed during an emergency; (5) lift without having to tilt; (6) be securely closed; (7) be made of non-toxic materials; (8) be properly ventilated; (9) have openings that are covered with bars or wire mesh; (10) have a solid leak-proof bottom to prevent waste seepage. All animals must be offered potable water at least every 12 hours during transit and must be fed at least every 24 hours, although marine mammals may be fed every 36 hours. The federal and state law asks some other requirements. (Paquette, 2012)

Many businesses in the US have implemented thorough requirements with respect to the care that must be given to captive wildlife and the safety of the people who come into contact with them, these have the obvious benefit of clarity to all who have an interest in ensuring compliance. Most significantly, it is clear from an enforcement perspective that emphasis on a stringent, preventative application process is desirable. The legal side of this matter it’s pretty straight forward, either you comply and follow the rules so the business can keep making money, or you don’t and your license is retired, pretty simple. But in ethics it is not the same, there are several different points of view about this topic. Now is time to study more about it and try to find if having animals in captivity is moral or not.

Ethics Section

Ethics is the branch of philosophy that explores the nature of moral virtue and evaluates human actions. Philosophical ethics differs from legal, religious, cultural and personal approaches to ethics by seeking to conduct the study of morality through a rational, secular outlook that is grounded in notions of human happiness or well being. A major advantage of a philosophical approach to ethics is that it avoids the authoritarian basis of law and religion as well as the subjectivity, arbitrariness and irrationality that may characterize cultural or totally personal moral views. In Ethics one can find various movements and ways to analyze it. Some of the drivers of Ethics and Ethical Analyses are Jeremy Bentham, Immanuel Kant, John Locke, David Hume, and many others. These fathers of ethics created many different Analysis of ethics, In this paper I am going to use Three main analysis: Kantian, Utilitarian and Aristotelian to determine if having Animals in Captivity is moral or if it is Immoral.
Utilitarian Ethical Analysis
To start, let me talk a little bit more about the Utilitarian Ethics. Utilitarianism is one of the most powerful and persuasive approaches to normative ethics in the history of philosophy. Though not fully articulated until the 19th century, proto-utilitarian positions can be discerned throughout the history of ethical theory.
Though there are many varieties of the view discussed, utilitarianism is generally held to be the view that the morally right action is the action that produces the most good. There are many ways to spell out this general claim. One thing to note is that the theory is a form of consequentialism: the right action is understood entirely in terms of consequences produced. What distinguishes utilitarianism from egoism has to do with the scope of the relevant consequences. On the utilitarian view one ought to maximize the overall good — that is, consider the good of others as well as one's own good.
The Classical Utilitarians, Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill, identified the good with pleasure, so, like Epicurus, were hedonists about value. They also held that we ought to maximize the good, that is, bring about ‘the greatest amount of good for the greatest number’. (Zalta, 2012)
Utilitarianism is also distinguished by impartiality and agent-neutrality. Everyone's happiness counts the same. When one maximizes the good, it is the good impartially considered. My good counts for no more than anyone else's good. Further, the reason I have to promote the overall good is the same reason anyone else has to so promote the good. It is not peculiar to me. All of these features of this approach to moral evaluation and/or moral decision-making have proven to be somewhat controversial and subsequent controversies have led to changes in the Classical version of the theory. (Zalta, 2012)
In Utilitarianism one can determine the morality of an idea, action; to do this we have to use the pleasure v. pain, numerical model of the ethical theory of Utilitarianism, which consists in the following steps: 1. Identify all people and groups who are directly and indirectly affected by the action (including the company's or organization’s constituent groups or "stakeholders" as well as society as a whole); 2. Specify for each stakeholder group directly and indirectly affected all the reasonably foreseeable good - pleasurable and bad - painful consequences of the action, as far as into the future as appears appropriate, and consider the various predictable outcomes, good and bad, and the likelihood of their occurring; 3. For each stakeholder group, including society as a whole, measure and weigh the total good consequences against the bad consequences, and determine which predominates for each stakeholder group; 4. Quantify the good and bad consequences for each stakeholder group on a numerical scale (-5, -4, -3, -2, -1, 0 +1, +2, +3, +4, +5) representing units and extremes of pleasure and pain; 5. Sum up all the good and bad consequences assigned to the stakeholder groups; 6. If the action results in an overall positive number, it produces more good than bad, and is a morally right action; and if the action results in an overall negative number, it produces more bad than good, and is morally wrong; based on this model of the Utilitarian ethical theory. (Cavico & Mujitaba 2010)
Now let’s apply the steps to the topic of this paper: Animals in Captivity. The people and groups who are affected directly and indirectly by this action are: Animals, Regional and Municipal Governments, Companies that have Animals in Captivity, movements against Animals in Captivity. Then let’s determine some consequences that could affect these stake holders: * Government decides to make it Illegal to have Animals in Captivity * Government decides to increase taxes to companies for having Animals in Captivity * Government rules that Animals in Captivity are good for society * Movements against Animals in Captivity start doing strikes all over the globe and Companies fell the need to shut down their business * Companies implement a way to still make movie with Animals but not having them in captivity
After determining the Conclusions is time to Quantify the good and bad consequences for each stakeholder group on a numerical scale: * Government decides to make it Illegal to have Animals in Captivity * Animals +5 * Regional and Municipal Governments 0 * Companies that have Animals in Captivity -5 * Movements against Animals in Captivity +5 * Government decides to increase taxes to companies for having Animals in Captivity * Animals +2 * Regional and Municipal Governments +5 * Companies that have Animals in Captivity -3 * Movements against Animals in Captivity +2 * Government rules that Animals in Captivity are good for society * Animals -5 * Regional and Municipal Governments 0 * Companies that have Animals in Captivity +5 * Movements against Animals in Captivity -5 * Movements against Animals in Captivity start doing strikes all over the globe and Companies fell the need to shut down their business * Animals +5 * Regional and Municipal Governments 0 * Companies that have Animals in Captivity -5 * Movements against Animals in Captivity +5 * Companies implement a way to still make profits with Animals but not having them in captivity * Animals +3 * Regional and Municipal Governments 0 * Companies that have Animals in Captivity +3 * Movements against Animals in Captivity +2
After having quantified the consequences for each stakeholder the number that ends up been is 19 (5 + 0 – 5 + 5 + 2 + 5 – 3 + 2 – 5 + 0 + 5 – 5 + 5 + 0 – 5 + 5 + 3 + 0 + 3 + 2 = 19), which is positive, meaning that the action makes more positive consequences than negative so it is morally right based on the model of the Utilitarian ethical theory.
Kantian Ethical Analysis
Following with the models it is time to study Immanuel Kant’s Ideas. Kantian ethics are deontological, revolving entirely around duty rather than emotions or goals beyond duty in itself. All actions are performed in accordance with some underlying maxim or principles, which are deeply different from each other Kant's philosophy of science has received attention from several different audiences and for a variety of reasons. It is of interest to contemporary philosophers of science primarily because of the way in which Kant attempts to articulate a philosophical framework that places substantive conditions on our scientific knowledge of the world while still respecting the autonomy and diverse claims of particular sciences. More specifically, Kant develops a philosophy of science that departs from (i) broadly empiricist views and (ii) certain necessitarian. Kant does so by holding that (i) scientific laws do involve necessity, but that (ii) this necessity is based not on (purely metaphysical and hence inaccessible) relations between universals, but rather on certain subjective, a priori conditions under which we can experience objects in space and time. (Zalta, 2012)
Kant also has a model to determine if an idea is morally wrong or right. It is the philosophical concept of a categorical imperative. In his philosophy, it denotes an absolute, unconditional requirement that allows no exceptions, and is both required and justified as an end in itself, not as a means to some other end; the opposite of a hypothetical imperative. Most famously, he holds that all categorical imperatives can be derived from a single one, which is known as "the" Categorical Imperative; it is upon this Imperative that the article will focus.
In his Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals, Kant formulates the Categorical Imperative in three different ways: * The first (Universal Law formulation): "Act only on that maxim through which you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law." * The second (Humanity or End in Itself formulation): "Act in such a way that you always treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never simply as a means, but always at the same time as an end." * The third (Kingdom of Ends formulation) combines the two: "All maxims as proceeding from our own [hypothetical] making of law ought to harmonize with a possible kingdom of ends." (Cavico & Mujitaba, 2009)
If the Idea passes all the principles then it is morally right, but if it fails to pass just one, it becomes morally wrong.
Now it is time to see if having Animals in Captivity to make money out of it is moral based on the Kantian’s Categorical Imperative principles: For me, the idea passes the first principle because it could become an universal law with no problem. But it fails to pass the second principle, because companies having Animals in Captivity are not “acting in such a way that they would always treat humanity”, therefore the idea is morally wrong following Kant’s ideal.
Aristotelian Ethical Analysis
Aristotle firmly believes that there can be knowledge of what is good for a human being. This good can not only be known but also rationally determined. This good is intrinsically desirable.
Aristotle’s approach is to define the good and then to ascertain what actions ought to be performed to attain the good. The good, said Aristotle, is what a person by nature seeks. One seeks happiness. Therefore, happiness is the good and the ultimate goal for a person. (Zalta, 2012)
Although Aristotle does present contemplation, reason, and the cultivation of philosophy as the highest form of human activity and as a goal toward which one must aspire, he is realist enough to realize that the practical necessities of community life demand reference to a “practical” principle of ethics. This practical, rational, ethical principle is the Doctrine of the Mean. It serves not only as the means to determine good from bad, but also to excellence, virtue, and the good life. The idea that morality and virtue are a mean is anything but a novelty, even for Aristotle, who essentially took over the Greek notion of moderation. The Doctrine of the Mean clearly reflects the traditional ancient Greek way of thinking, with is emphasis on measure, proportion, opposites, and balance, as well as a common sense view that in both feedings and actions, one can distinguish between the opposites of excess and deficiency. (Cavico & Mujitaba, 2009) This “Mean” principle can be applied to a great range of human qualities, characteristics, and activities. In this case, having Animals in captivity. Pursuant to the “Mean” doctrine, all qualities of character are arranged in triads; the first and last categories will be extremes (vices); and the middle category will be means (virtues). In the next table we will apply the Doctrine of the Mean to our topic, and see which could be the mean that companies need to achieve in order to be Morally good for Aristotelian Ethics: Activity | Vice (Deficiency) | Virtue (Mean) | Vice (Excess) | Having Animals in Captivity and Making profits out of it | Making profits not caring at all about the Animals well being | Making profits while taking care of the Animals | Make sure the Animals are healthy and happy without making profits |
(Cavico & Mujitaba, 2009) Attaining the mean for Companies (Making profits and taking care of the Animals in this case) presupposes both the right state of character and the right intellect. A right state of character is a virtuous state of character. A virtuous person is not one who plans to do certain isolated good acts. Rather, good acts must flow naturally from this source and must come spontaneously from a person. (Cavico & Mujitaba, 2009)

Some virtues do not seem to fit into Aristotle’s scheme. Does the doctrine apply to intellectual contemplation, which is the “best” of all activities? Probably not, as one can maintain that the doctrine is intended only to apply to the practical virtues, not to those of the intellect.
Social Responsibility Section
Businesses need focus only on increasing their profits, as long as they stay "within the rules of the game, which is to say, engage in open and free competition without deception or fraud," wrote Milton Friedman in his iconic Sept. 13, 1970, New York Times Magazine essay, “The Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits.”
Darn it if the game doesn’t keep changing, though, expanding "open and free competition," if not deception and fraud, to now includes the big brands’ ongoing social responsibility beauty contests.
The idea that companies should embrace its social responsibilities and not be solely focused on maximizing profits. Social responsibility entails developing businesses with a positive relationship to the society that they operate in. According to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), this relationship to the society and environment in which they operate is "a critical factor in their ability to continue to operate effectively. It is also increasingly being used as a measure of their overall performance." (Hoyt, 1992)
Many companies, particularly "green" companies have made social responsibility an integral part of their business models. What's more, some investors use a company's social responsibility - or lack thereof - as an investment criterion. (Hoyt, 1992)

That said, not everybody believes that business should have a social conscience. Noted economist Milton Friedman noted that the "social responsibili­ties of business are notable for their analytical looseness and lack of rigor." Friedman believed that only people could have social responsibilities. Businesses, by their very nature, cannot.
There are many complains about marine theme parks being or not socially responsible, must of them are against their way of having Animals in captivity without taking the proper care they deserve and need. The latest data show that orcas are more than three times as likely to die at any age in captivity as they are in the wild. This translates into a shorter life span and is probably the result of several factors. First, orcas in captivity are out of shape; they are the equivalent of couch potatoes, as the largest orca tank in the world is less than one ten-thousandth of one percent (0.0001%) the size of the smallest home range of wild orcas. (Hoyt, 1992)
Second, they are in artificial and often incompatible social groups. This contributes to chronic stress, which can depress the immune system and leave captive orcas susceptible to infections they would normally fight off in the wild.
Third, they often break their teeth chewing compulsively on metal gates. These broken teeth, even drilled and cleaned regularly by irrigation, are clear routes for bacteria to enter the bloodstream. These are the obvious factors; there are almost certainly others contributing to the elevated mortality seen in captivity.
These factors boil down simply to this: Captivity kills orcas.
Yes, they may survive for years entertaining audiences, but eventually the stressors of captivity catch up to them. Very few captive orcas make it to midlife (approximately 30 years for males and 45 for females) and not one out of more than 200 held in captivity has ever come close to old age (60 for males, 80 for females). Most captive orcas die while they are still very young by wild orca standards. (Ramjet, 2012) One recommendation I have for these companies is an idea I got from the movie Black Fish. A win/win solution to both the trainer safety and orca welfare dilemmas facing marine theme parks around the world, including SeaWorld in the United States.
These facilities can work with experts around the world to create sanctuaries where captive orcas can be rehabilitated and retired. These sanctuaries would be sea pens or netted-off bays or coves, in temperate to cold water natural habitat. They would offer the animals respite from performing and the constant exposure to a parade of strangers (an entirely unnatural situation for a species whose social groupings are based on family ties and stability -- "strangers" essentially do not exist in orca society). Incompatible animals would not be forced to cohabit the same enclosures and family groups would be preserved.
Show business trainers would no longer be necessary. Expert caretakers would continue to train retired whales for veterinary procedures, but would not get in the water and would remain at a safe distance (this is known in zoo parlance as "protected contact"). And the degree to which they interact directly with the whales would be each whale's choice.
A fundamental premise of these sanctuaries, however, is that eventually they would empty. Breeding would not be allowed and captive orcas would no longer exist within the next few decades.
Many wildlife sanctuaries, for circus, roadside zoo and backyard refugees, exist around the globe for animals such as big cats, elephants and chimpanzees. The business (usually nonprofit) model for these types of facilities is therefore well established for terrestrial species and can be adapted for orcas.
Wildlife sanctuaries are sometimes open to the public, although public interaction with the animals is usually minimized. A visitor's center can offer education, real-time remote viewing of the animals, a gift shop, and in the case of whales and dolphins can even be a base for responsible whale watching if the sanctuary is in a suitable location for that activity.
For me Marine theme parks are going downhill, some of their bigger supporters are wondering if the time has come to think outside the (concrete) box. Many movies, documentaries and articles against Animals in Captivity are coming out more and more now days. It is a time bomb; some day sooner than later, clients are going to realize that is neither moral nor ethical to give money to these companies. People that go every day are supporting the horrible life these Animals have to embrace. The marine theme parks can shift with the paradigm or be left behind -- it is up to them.

“The family trip to San Diego that we've been discussing, in part to visit SeaWorld with the kids, might be off -- indefinitely. I relayed that news to my husband (he wasn't pleased) after watching the stirring documentary "Blackfish," Said Victoria Humms, a Resident of the State of California that wanted to travel with her husband and children to San Diego to enjoy seeing some whales in action.
What creates a huge debate in this paper is that following Kant’s ideals having animals in captivity is morally wrong; but, following the Utilitarian principles is morally right, because more people will receive benefits than others will not.
After all the attacks these companies are having lately Jim Atchinson SeaWorld’s CEO and President said: "bringing animals into captivity causes adverse effects, these effects, on balance, are outweighed by such benefits as enhancement of human appreciation for all animals, conservation of species, and advancement of knowledge." After that, he took his view a step further, and tried to anticipate any probable dispute: "Some people contend that it is morally wrong to remove animals from the wild and hold them in captivity, either because they believe that some animals have evolved sufficiently to acquire rights equivalent to those recognized for human beings, or because they believe animals are severely harmed by life in captivity ... These beliefs are not currently supported by sufficient scientific evidence. Consequently, they do not provide a factual basis for an overriding moral objection to displaying animals in captivity."
It is easy to say this. To say that there are not scientific proof that animals are severely harmed by life in captivity when you are making money out of it, and recognizing that if it was not like that will mean the end of the company and the termination of him as the CEO of this company.
Part of that freedom is freedom from captivity. Confusing the problem of not wanting willingly to handle killer whales, though, is the fact that as we advance into the new Century, habitat for animals in difference then humans is growing in short supply. For better or worse, humans have the job of "managing" the Planet. Rather than pressing for no management", we must work for more caring management, using new techniques that will create a win-win situation between “managers” (humans) and the environment (animals, plants, etc.). It is a must to us the managers of the world to intensify non-invasive research programs and fight against those who would distort scientific information or use it, for example, to exploit whales. And of course we need this information from Scientifics to get to know more about whales. To know when they could be in trouble in order to help them. Humans, despite having a poor record of concerning about the rights of other humans, animals, whales in general or orcas in particular, as well as whales in general, or orcas in particular, are now in the position of helping or hurting all life on Earth. The question may well become: Can humans be good managers without assuming the traditional role of exploiter?

Cavico, F. J., & Mujitaba, B. G. , (2009). Business Ethics. 1st ed. United States of America: Pearson Custom Publishing.

Cavico, F. J., & Mujitaba, B. G. (2008). Legal Chalelenges for the Global Manager and Entrepreneur. 1st ed. United States of America: Kendall

Cowperthwaite, G. (Producer/Screenwriter/Director). (2013). BlackFish [Motion Picture]. United States: Many O Productions.

Hoyt, E. (1992). The Ethics of Keeping Whales and Dolphins Captive. Frontline. (13), pp.5

International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (e.g. 2011). e.g. Training and certification. [ONLINE] Available at: [Last Accessed February 28th 2014].

Johnson, W. (2002). The Rose-Tinted Menagerie: A History of Animals in Entertainment, from Ancient Rome to the 20th Century. 2nd ed. United States of America

Paquette, P. (2010). The Status of Captive Wild Animals in the U.S.: An Overview of the Problem and the Laws. [ONLINE] Available at: [Last Accessed February 20th 2014].

Ramjet R.E., (2011). Animals in zoos: Is it morally wrong to keep animals in zoos?. BBC. 30 (e.g. 2), pp.10

Zalta, E. (Winter 2012 Edition). Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Stanford, CA: Metaphysics Research Lab Center for the Study of Language and Information.

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