1) Because God condemns it. All gods, everywhere, all the time. And if they don’t, they aren’t real gods, they’re just false idols so they don’t count. Real gods condemn zoophilia!
2) Because even if 1) only applies to followers of that religion’s moral code, zoophilia is still wrong because it hurts animals. All animals, everywhere, all the time, even if it’s a 150 lb. man having sex with a 1,200 lb. mare or a 400 lb. dolphin that could kill him without thinking about it.
3) Well, it can’t be proven that all zoophilia hurts all animals, but zoophilia must still be wrong because even if the animals aren’t being physically hurt they can’t give consent, just like children, and therefore zoophilia is the moral equivalent of rape.
4) Well, OK, maybe SOME animals can APPEAR to give consent SOME of the time, but that’s just because when animals are driven by their inescapable biological drives they CAN’T NOT GIVE CONSENT. So it’s not really “consent,” it’s just their hormones making them appear to give consent, because as we all know real consent is what only adult humans can do.
5) Well, all right, even if we do acknowledge that animals are not machines completely driven by their inescapable drives and instincts, STILL they cannot be aware of the consequences of their acts down the road, so they’re just like human children, they can’t give INFORMED CONSENT. So zoophilia is still wrong.
6) Even if we admit that the concept of “informed consent” doesn’t apply to other species, zoophilia is still wrong because if it isn’t wrong, then what else isn’t wrong? Pedophiles will demand access to our children and necrophiliacs will demand access to our dearly departed, AND WE WONT BE ABLE TO STOP THEM!
7) OK, even if we admit that there’s no logical, rational, statistical or scientific connection between zoophilia and pedophilia/necrophilia, the distinction between “human” and “animal” is so basic and fundamental to ALL HUMAN SOCIETIES that if we let this distinction erode, the very concepts upon which our society and world-view is based will be threatened. Zoophilia is wrong, then, because it undermines the cosmic order that enables us to give meaning to this complex and confusing world.
8) Even if we acknowledge that our concept of the world is not absolute and explicit, but simply the implicit bi-product of our human senses and societal conditioning, ZOOPHILIA IS WRONG BECAUSE IT MAKES ME WANT TO HURL, DUDE! Gross!
9) Zoophilia is wrong because if it’s not wrong then our animal rights organization is going to lose a significant percentage of its income stream, which comes from people who support our fight against zoophilia. Why do we fight zoophilia? Because it’s wrong, and IT MAKES US MONEY!
10) It’s JUST WRONG, OK? I don’t need a fucking reason, it’s just WRONG!
Here it is, fans, my response from the MediaWorks Standards Committee about my complaint. According to law, I had to file a complaint with MediaWorks first and be declined before I could appeal to the Broadcast Standards Authority, New Zealand’s FCC. Stand by for my response! All italicization is mine, for emphasis.
The MediaWorks Standards Committee wishes to advise you we have completed our inquiry into your formal complaint about the decision to broadcast on The Edge on 3 April 2019, an edited version of your interview with Dom Harvey, Meg Annear and Clint Randell. You complained that this breached Standards 4, 5, 6 ,8, 9 and 11.
We have not identified any breach of the standards set out in the Code of Broadcasting Practice. Our reasoning is outlined in further detail below.
If you are not happy about this decision you have the right in accordance with Section 7(3) of the Broadcasting Act 1989 to refer your complaint to the Broadcasting Standards Authority, (P.O. Box 9213, Wellington or bsa.govt.nz) for the purpose of an investigation and review. You have 20 working days after receipt of this email to exercise this right of referral.
The broadcast on 3 April was the final installment of a storyline which ran over three episodes of the Dom, Meg and Randell show. We have provided copies of all of the audio from these episodes, with this response. However in summary:
On 29 March the hosts first discussed the viral ‘Florida man’ birthday challenge, in which people conduct a Google search with their date of birth and the words “Florida man”, and receive news stories about the behaviour of a ‘Florida man’ on their birthday. ‘Florida man’ is a generic descriptor for a person who commits bizarre or idiotic crimes, popularly associated with—and often reported in—Florida.
Dom had conducted such a search using his birth date 3 February. The first search result was an article about you with the headline “Florida Man who had sex with dolphin says it seduced him”.
Following this discussion, listeners rang in to contribute their own birth dates and “Florida Man” stories.
On 1 April: the hosts discussed how they had recorded an interview with you, and provided some more detail about your story, including that:
you had written a book;
you had been fired from the aquarium where this occurred (which we are aware is not the case, but do not think is material);
you had been interviewed by MediaWorks’ journalist (at the time) David Farrier;
you had reviewed the movie “The Shape of Water” in a piece for Huffington Post;
the dolphin’s name was Dolly;
you had made a documentary about your relationship with Dolly;
you didn’t go through the court system and weren’t sent to jail;
you claim Dolly was in love with you;
you claim Dolly initiated the behaviour and seduced you over time;
you claim Dolly was so distraught when you were separated that she took her own life.
Meg made clear her opposition to hearing about bestiality and outlined her counter-view that Dolly was “traumatised because a man had seduced her and she’s a dolphin”. The hosts then sought and received feedback from listeners on whether or not to broadcast the interview.
Dom indicated he would need to clear it with his legal team before broadcasting.
On 3 April the hosts described the “Florida Man” challenge again, played extracts of the previous show and emphasised to listeners not to ‘flip out’ because they had heard the audience feedback and weren’t going to play the full interview.
They talked about Meg’s opposition to this storyline and played the following extract from the interview:
Malcolm:Dolphins’ skin is peeling all the time so they need to have it rubbed. She would roll over on her back and then swim forward until I was rubbing her [bleep].
Meg:This is sick. This is sick. I think you’re sick in the head and this is disgusting. This is a non-consensual situation. A dolphin cannot consensually choose to have sex with a human and you absolutely took advantage of that and I don’t want to be involved with this.
Meg explained she was flustered and furious, and the hosts explained that everyone who got into contact with the show – apart from one listener named Peter – had agreed that the topic was not appropriate for broadcast. Peter was given the opportunity to listen to the entire interview off-air and was then asked for his view of the interview. Peter indicated that he regretted having heard it.
Standard 4 Violence
The Violence Standard states that :
Broadcasters should exercise care and discretion when referencing violence.
We have not identified any content which referenced violence, and no breach of this Standard.
Standard 5 Law and Order
Under the Law and Order Standard:
Broadcasters should observe standards consistent with the maintenance of law and order, taking into account the context of the programme and the wider context of the broadcast.
As the commentary on this Standard makes clear, its purpose is to prevent broadcasts that encourage audiences to break the law, or otherwise promote criminal or serious antisocial activity.
This broadcast did not promote criminal or serious antisocial activity; rather the inverse is the case. The hosts criticised behaviour which is unlawful in New Zealand under section 143 of the Crimes Act 1961. We consider that this was appropriate,and there is no breach of this Standard.
Standard 6 Discrimination and denigration
Under the Discrimination and Denigration Standard:
Broadcasters should not encourage discrimination against, or denigration of, any section of the community on account of sex, sexual orientation, race, age, disability, occupational status or as a consequence of legitimate expression of religion, culture or political belief.
Although elements of the Broadcast – particularly Meg’s comments – were dismissive and even condemnatory of your behaviour, the Commentary on this Standard is clear:
“This standard does not apply to individuals…
The standard applies only to recognised ‘sections of the community’ which is consistent with the grounds for discrimination listed in the Human Rights Act 1993.”
We do not accept that people who have sex with dolphins, or even at the broadest level, zoophiles (i.e. people with a persistent sexual interest in animals) comprise a “section of the community” within the scope of this Standard. Although the Human Rights Act does prohibit discrimination on the grounds of “sexual orientation”, it defines this as “heterosexual, homosexual, lesbian, or bisexual orientation” only (see section 21(1)(m)), and not an orentation towards animals.
This is consistent with the fact that bestiality is illegal in New Zealand. Zoophiles are not protected from discrimination in the Human Rights Act and we do not accept that the Standard applies here, or that the Standard was breached by this Broadcast.
Standard 8 Balance
Under the Balance Standard:
When controversial issues of public importance are discussed in news, current affairs or factual programmes, broadcasters should make reasonable efforts, or give reasonable opportunities, to present significant points of view either in the same programme or in other programmes within the period of current interest.
As summarised in Guideline 8a, for the standard to apply, the subject matter must be an issue ‘of public importance’, it must be ‘controversial’ and it must be ‘discussed’ in a news, current affairs or factual programme.
The Standard does not apply in this case, because at least two of these requirements are not made out:
While clearly important to you, this issue is not relevant to the wider New Zealand public and is not ‘of public importance’. Bestiality, and the capacity for animals to consent to intercourse with a human are fringe issues, without any widespread or mainstream importance.
The Dom, Meg and Randell show is not a news, current affairs or factual programme. The show is promoted as a place for “the latest entertainment news, celebrity gossip, scandal, competitions and all the funniest gags to spark up your morning”. Listeners expect light-hearted chat and laughs, but do not reasonably expect it to be “authoritative or truthful”, which is the defining characteristic of a factual programme according to the commentary on the Standards.
Standard 9 Accuracy
Under the Accuracy Standard:
Broadcasters should make reasonable efforts to ensure that news, current affairs and factual programming:
• is accurate in relation to all material points of fact
• does not mislead.
The purpose of this standard is to protect the public from being significantly misinformed. However the Standard applies only to news, current affairs and factual programming, which this was not (see para 16b above) . Therefore there cannot be a breach of this Standard.
Standard 11 Fairness
Under the Fairness Standard:
Broadcasters should deal fairly with any person or organisation taking part or referred to in any broadcast.
There are serious issues with how Dom, Meg and Randell dealt with you and your contribution during the Broadcast. In particular the Committee is concerned about the way the interview was edited and broadcast on 3 April, and the information which Dom Harvey provided to you after your interview, which was misleading and incomplete. We have raised these concerns with the show’s producers and presenters and have reminded them of their obligations under this Standard. We have also reviewed our processes to take into account the slightly unusual situation here, where a storyline was modified in response to clear listener feedback.
However overall we are satisfied that the storyline or the 3 April broadcast were not unfair to you, and fairly reflects your position in relation to your interactions with Dolly.
The BSA’s Commentary on this Standard states:
Generally, a consideration of what is fair will take into account the following:
whether the audience would have been left with an unduly negative impression of an individual or organisation
whether an individual or organisation taking part or referred to in a programme was adequately informed of the nature of their participation
whether informed consent was required and/or obtained (guidance on what constitutes ‘informed consent’ is found in Guidance: Privacy at the back of this Codebook)
whether the individual or organisation was given a reasonable opportunity to comment, and whether their comments were adequately presented in the programme
the nature of the individual, for example, a public figure or organisation familiar with dealing with the media, as opposed to an ordinary person with little or no media experience
whether any critical comments were aimed at the participant in their business or professional life, or their personal life
the public significance of the broadcast and its value in terms of free speech
The Committee has considered the context around the broadcast:
We accept that the show’s audience would have been left with a negative impression of you based on your behaviour with Dolly. However we do not accept that this impression was caused by the Broadcast. In the Committee’s view, any negative impression was a result of pre-existing perceptions of bestiality and those who engage in it. The Committee is satisfied that there is already widespread distaste for the behaviour you engaged in. The feedback from listeners of the programme supports this view, and again we note that the New Zealand legislature has seen fit to prohibit bestiality with a serious criminal sanction of up to seven years’ imprisonment.
We consider that prior to the broadcast you were adequately informed of the intended nature of your participation. At that time the hosts did plan to broadcast your interview in full or use it for a podcast. It was only after they received overwhelming listener feedback and appreciated that there was no audience appetite for this story, that the hosts and production team reconsidered their approach. We would have expected them to communicate their decision to you. In any event is clear to us that you are experienced in dealing with the media and have told your story before, and we are certain that you would have expected and would have been prepared for opposition or condemnation of your behaviour.
The Committee does not approve of the way your interview was edited, and we understand why you might feel you had not been given a reasonable opportunity to comment. However we agree with producers that in light of the audience’s clear expectations it was not appropriate to play the entire interview. A better decision would have been not to play any part of your interview, rather than playing only the portions of the interview in which Meg reacted to your behaviour. Despite this we are satisfied that your position was adequately presented across the series of broadcasts, and the 3 April Broadcast on its own. In particular your claims that Dolly initiated and consented to this behaviour were presented, as were your claims that Dolly was forlorn by your separation and died of a broken heart, and the fact bestiality was not illegal in Florida at that time or until 2011. We do not accept that listeners were unaware of your position.
In summary there is no basis to uphold your complaint.
Book Review: Uniquely Dangerous by Carreen Maloney. Published by the author.
By Malcolm J. Brenner
Every so often a non-fiction book comes along which threatens to expose the common wisdom about its subject for the misconception it really is. In my own life, I can think of only a few books that have had this profound effect on me. Growing up in the turmoil of the Civil Rights Movement, one was The Autobiography of Malcolm X, co-authored by Alex Haley; another was Black Panther Eldridge Cleaver’s short but damning tale of incarceration, Soul on Ice.
I mention these two books because they come most readily to mind, not because I want to make race an issue. The subject of Uniquely Dangerous is an Anglo man, not a person of color, and a privileged Anglo man at that, who rose to wealth and renown while concealing a dark secret from everyone around him, including those he loved.
His name was Doug Spink, and if that sounds vaguely familiar, you have a long memory for the perverse and obscure. It hearkens back to a 2010 raid by a multi-agency taskforce of 30 people on a tiny cabin in Whatcom County, Washington, to bring Spink in for probation violations relating to an earlier arrest for drug smuggling.
But that wasn’t what made the headlines. What got the big, bold typeface was the announcement by authorities that they had busted a “bestiality farm” run by Spink, where clients could be serviced by dogs or horses he had on the property (including a champion show jumper). The allegations grew even weirder when local animal rescuers announced that they have saved several rats covered with petroleum jelly. One “client,” an English tourist, was arrested with Spink.
Carreen Maloney was an experienced print journalist and a supporter of the Whatcom County animal shelter that received Spink’s animals. While the headlines about bestiality repulsed her, she wondered about a lot of things. Why hadn’t any of the reporters who covered the story tried to interview Spink to get his side? Weren’t journalists supposed to be fair? What happened to the animals, especially seven dogs and the mice, that went to the county shelter? And what made a successful businessman like Spink, who worked in cutting-edge encryption technology that even puzzled the Feds, drop everything to live like a hermit and indulge a sexual orientation many people found revolting?
Thus began an eight-year odyssey for Maloney, but her toil and research has paid off in a remarkable tale that reads like a mystery story but has the ring of truth. We find out that the 2010 raid was only the beginning of Spink’s troubles with the justice system, which seemed more concerned about ending his vocal support for his alternative sexuality than about punishing him for a non-violent crime.
Maloney has accumulated a huge volume of material on Spink’s dual life, a high-tech wizard by day and a zoophile by night, and distilled it to its most essential parts. The story plunges backward and forward in time, exploring Spink’s past, his family life, and the marriage that ended in failure when he came out as a zoophile, and a gay one at that. But Maloney handles these transitions with great skill, even weaving in her own narrative, as a tragic personal loss sets her on the road to telling Spink’s story.
Along the way, Maloney also takes sidetracks into other elements of the hidden zoo culture, showing us how it covertly appears in art, advertising, entertainment, religion, as an enduring theme of a group that’s uncomfortable with its own species. She uses Spink’s torment at the hands of federal prosecutors as a lens through which to view society’s loathing of human-animal sex, and she courageously asks the question, why? Why such a visceral reaction?
If you are a zoophile, or know someone who is, you owe it to yourself to buy Uniquely Dangerous, because seldom has writing on this inflammatory topic been so lucid, so even-handed and well-documented. If you are interested in the psychology of human sexual deviance, this book will provide useful insights. Similarly, those concerned with loss of personal freedoms and the erosion of privacy will find a story that illustrates their worst fears. If you like tales of personal will and courage in the face of overwhelming odds, you’ll cheer Spink’s outspoken defiance. And if you simply admire a riveting piece of journalism about a taboo subject, Maloney won’t disappoint you.
The portrait that emerges is of a complex, troubled man who always seems to find himself athwart the tides of life, whether he’s fighting his ex-wife for his beloved jumping horse or telling a federal court judge exactly how he feels. In the end, you may not like Doug Spink, but you might come to admire him. In a world that demands conformity, he refused to bend. Uniquely Dangerous is the balance sheet of what that stand has cost him.
— Malcolm J. Brenner, author: Wet Goddess: Recollections of a Dolphin Lover
(In the interest of full disclosure, my novel, above, receives a brief mention in Uniquely Dangerous as part of material past the Appendix. This inclusion has in no way influenced my opinion of the book, however. — MJB)
PUNTA GORDA, Fla. – Writer Malcolm J. Brenner got a pleasant surprise on a recent Monday morning when he read a web site that plugged Wet Goddess, his epic human-dolphin love story. The story was picked up by Brenner’s routine Google Alerts search.
On November 13, The Inquisitor published a review of an edgy Saturday Night Live skit featuring Kate McKinnon and Aidy Bryant as a pair of female scientists trying to train a dolphin to communicate. When the dolphin hits adolescence, they find the only way to keep him on task is to masturbate him. Host Tiffany Haddish plays a colleague who finds the whole thing nasty. The skit manages to be funny, cheesy and satirical at the same time.
It’s based on the actual relationship between a kindergarten teacher, Margaret Howe Lovatt, and Peter, a male bottlenose dolphin kept in a unique living arrangement at the Communications Research Institute on St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands in the early 1960’s. Lilly described the unusual situation, which was intended to teach Peter how to speak English, in his 1967 book The Mind of the Dolphin.
During six weeks of living with Peter in a flooded room day in and day out, Lovatt found him demanding she masturbate him before their lessons would continue. Eager to continue the research, and unable to rationalize any objections to Peter’s advances, Howe complied. Lilly used parts of her notes in his book.
The Inquisitor also referenced a 2014 article in The Mirror, a British tabloid newspaper, which interviewed Brenner about his dolphin experience by phone. That article, in turn, linked to an earlier story about Lovatt and Peter.
Asked whether the exposure had any effect on sales of his novel, Brenner said “I’m not sure, but I sold four copies over the weekend, which is unusual. The first sale came in from the next time zone west of me at about 11:30 p.m. my time, so I don’t know whether SNL would have been on there. But I’ll take any publicity I can get! Thanks, guys, the check is in the mail!”
Brenner recently had to completely re-do the layout for his dolphin novel before having the next order printed. “I’ve written two other books since Wet Goddess was published in 2010, and I wanted to add a couple of pages at the end of the book to let readers know about my other work, which is equally radical.
“Because Microsoft had changed its Word document creation software between 2010 and now, the original .doc file had paragraph spacing errors when I opened it in an up-to-date version that uses the .docx filename. I ended up having to completely reformat the book, adding two new photos to take up some blank space,” Brenner continued.
Ever the perfectionist, Brenner had no sooner gotten the books back from the printer than he found another minor typo in them. “That’s the beauty of short-run printing,” he explained. “You may not be able to afford an editor or a proofreader, but any goofs you make can be corrected in the next print run.”