It's hard to imagine that the words "Jessica Alba," "Sharks" and "Oklahoma" would ever appear in the same sentence, but it is true.
Yesterday, a local Oklahoma blog The Lost Ogle published photos of the A-list celebrity pasting an image of the now famous "White Mike" shark on several abandoned looking surfaces.
As I blogged a while back, White Mike is an interesting viral campaign to raise awareness about illegal shark fin hunting. Unfortunately Alba got caught on camera. Wheat pasting is not technically "defacing" (because the poster can be washed off) and there have been no charges pressed.
At first I wondered if Alba might also be behind the appearance of the White Mike posters in LA, DC and Atlanta but I received a message via White Mike's Twitter in response to my tweet question, saying that she was not.
TMZ picked up the story and ridiculed the star for her efforts to publicize sharks in a land-locked city. But today, the mystery people behind White Mike issued a press release. I'm just going to repost it here because it is well-written and describes why Oklahoma was the selected location:
To the people of Oklahoma City…
Some have asked why these images of the Great White Shark were posted in Oklahoma, a place far away from the slaughtering waters off Ecuador’s Galapagos or the booming shark fin markets of Hong Kong. The reason is that illegal shark fin hunting effects the people of Oklahoma. It affects us all.
As the apex predator of the oceans, sharks have evolved over millions of years to manage the immensely complex and fragile ecosystems of the ocean kingdom. The largest study ever done on marine ecosystems has proven that when sharks disappear a deadly domino effect is triggered in the food chain, ultimately resulting in the collapse of the coral reefs, the spawning ground for the fish we (and other species) depend upon.
With the growing demand for shark fins, shark populations have been decimated. By some estimates, over 90% of the shark population has been lost in the last 30 years. This year an estimated 100 million sharks will be killed, a mortality rate which will almost certainly end in the extinction of the species.
There is a dire need for us as a human race to try and stop the devastation of the Great White Shark. International pressure is the only way to do it and that starts in Oklahoma, the heartland of America.