Sink or Swim?


Staff Writer Makayla Powell

After Laeticia Brouwer, 17, was attacked and killed by a shark on Monday while surfing in Western Australia, the Australian government will consider all proposals to stop shark attacks after the death of the teenage girl. It was the third deadly attack in Western Australia within 12 months. Federal Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg said he would consider new proposals including culling, but any action would rely upon the state government. “In light of the recent shark attack the Commonwealth would welcome any proposal to put human life first,” said Mr Frydenberg.

news1Laeticia Brouwer

But in light of all of these attacks, is this a shark issue or a human issue? Thinking about the situation objectively, humans are the ones going into a habitat that they are considered prey in, and are taking the chance of not being mistaken for food. After a shark attack, many people advocate to find the shark and kill it, but there are thousands of sharks in the ocean, so how much good could it really do besides killing a couple innocent sharks in hopes of finding the right one, although the shark that killed someone was acting on primitive instincts of finding food in the first place.

 sharksharkShark Cull Method

Many Australian officials are advocating for even more aggressive measures to get rid of the so-called ‘shark problem,’ although much controversy has already been raised on the process of culling with drum lines, which basically sets baited traps for sharks to get trapped on and killed.  More than 170 sharks were caught in 2014 but none of them was a great white, which was the shark that killed Brouwer. Which raises the question of how necessary the culling is, if it isnt even providing any results? What is the point in disrupting the ecosystem by taking well over a hundred sharks out of it?

shafProtest Sign

Unfortunately, many people desire instant gratification for something that requires no gratification in the first place. Nature is ruthless and although the death of a teenage girl is extremely tragic, it is irresponsible of humans to go after every shark for the actions of one, especially when the actions are exactly what are to be expected from a predatory creature.  


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