Thursday, November 10, 2011
Last Friday we held a pre-festival screening of Trish Dolman's film Eco-Pirate, in partnership with Kawatha World Issues Centre and OPIRG Peterborough. The film tells the story of Canada's own Paul Watson, former Green Peacer, now founder and president of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. It was a very revealing portrait of Watson, showing him as the hot-headed, stubborn, and arrogant man that he is - which is part of what made the film so great. This was no save the seals because they're cute film - this was hardcore eco-activism. Watson admittedly isn't humanities biggest fan, and says he's really doing it for the animals - so he gets things done, and he does it however he can. His favourite tactic: welding what resembles a giant tin-can opener to the side of his boat and ramming into whaling ships until they're laying on the bottom of the ocean. I can't help but picture him as an action-hero emblazoned on a poster in some young, activist-to-be's bedroom.
After the film, Gavin Fridell, Chair of Political Studies at Trent University, moderated a lively audience discussion. I'm not even going to try to summarize everything that was talked about - we had to stop the discussion around 9:30 because our time had run out - but even then, there was no shortage of hands hanging in the air, eager to share thoughts and opinions.