Steve-O – stuntman, animal rights activist, and Jackass star – was arrested last weekend in a stunt designed to protest SeaWorld, MSN is reporting.
The 41-year-old Steve-O – real name: Stephen Gilchrist Glover – was taken into custody Sunday after he climbed a 100-foot construction crane in Hollywood, released a balloon shaped like a killer whale with the words “Seaworld Sucks” written on it, then launched fireworks.
So what beef does Steve-O have with SeaWorld? As previously reported by the Inquisitr, SeaWorld has been under fire recently after concerns about its treatment of its animals in captivity – particularly its orcas, or killer whales as they’re sometimes called – were raised in the 2013 documentary Blackfish. The documentary alleges that, among other things, the animals are kept in tiny habitats, leading to stress and aggression against their trainers and other orcas.
The backlash from the damning documentary has caused a drop in profits for SeaWorld – something that undoubtedly makes Steve-O happy – even as the company insists that it has made improvements in its treatment of its animals. How much improvement SeaWorld has made remains a matter of debate, however, as Slate reports that the popular theme park’s claims of improvement are exaggerated.
Before his Sunday stunt, Steve-O took to social media to let his followers know that he was up to something, posting a teaser on Instagram.
“This is Shammy. We’re gonna do a big dangerous stunt tomorrow in Los Angeles that will probably get me in a lot of trouble, and you can watch it happen at 7pm PST via a live stream on my Facebook page. #SeeYouAt7pmTomorrow #yeahdude”
Whether or not Steve-O’s stunt truly brought attention to the plight of animals in captivity at SeaWorld remains to be seen. But his stunt definitely got the attention of law enforcement – and not in a good way. Los Angeles Police Department Lt. Michael Ling tells KTLA that Steve-O’s stunt wasted valuable resources.
“He’s trying to make a statement I suppose, and it’s highly discouraged because it’s absolutely wasting a lot of police and fire resources on this.”
And as it turns out, Steve-O’s stunt actually did draw resources away from someone who actually needed those resources: not far from Steve-O was a crane operator who was having a medical emergency. Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart noted that Steve-O’s “hoax” stretched resources thin at a time when they were desperately needed.
Do you think Steve-O’s stunt was the right way to protest SeaWorld?
[Image courtesy of: Getty Images/Michael Buckner]