It just doesn't get any dumber than this.
Three decades have passed since the movie Jaws sent terrified bathers scrambling out of the ocean. But as any beach lifeguard knows, there's still nothing like a gory shark attack to stoke public hysteria and paranoia.This is so ridiculous. The recent fatality off Solana Beach in California was more an anomaly than anything. For one, there weren't exactly too many people in the water that morning and the Pacific Ocean isn't exactly like warm bath water.
Two deaths in the waters off California and Mexico last week and a spate of shark-inflicted injuries to surfers off Florida's Atlantic coast have left beachgoers seeking an explanation for a sudden surge in the number of strikes.
In the first four months of this year, there were four fatal shark attacks worldwide, compared with one in the whole of 2007, according to the International Shark Attack File at the Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville.
'The one thing that's affecting shark attacks more than anything else is human activity,' said Dr George Burgess of Florida University, a shark expert who maintains the database. 'As the population continues to rise, so does the number of people in the water for recreation. And as long as we have an increase in human hours in the water, we will have an increase in shark bites.'
Some experts suggest that an abundance of seals has attracted high numbers of sharks, while others believe that overfishing has hit their food chain. 'I'm not saying it doesn't happen, but it's a convenient excuse,' Burgess said. Another contributory factor to the location of shark attacks could be global warming and rising sea temperatures. 'You'll find that some species will begin to appear in places they didn't in the past with some regularity,' he said.
I was on that beach two weeks prior to that attack and believe me, the water was freezing. I was one of the few people who actually went in the water without a wetsuit.
Junk journalism like this should be rejected by the editors at the newspapers. Such irresponsible reporting does nothing but bring discredit upon the news business.
To use a well-worn phrase, you could say this global warming hysteria has jumped the shark.