SeaWorld may not have been looking for a PR nightmare, but thanks to Tommy Lee, PETA, and a growing war of words, they've now got one.
The Motley Crue drummer earlier this week fired off a letter to SeaWorld execs slamming them over SeaWorld techniques for harvesting whale sperm. Lee was specifically interested in a a 12,000-pound orca named Tilikum — the same whale that had been involved in the death of three people, most recently Dawn Brancheau, a 40-year-old trainer with 16 years of experience at SeaWorld.
"We understand that you refuse to release this frustrated whale because he is your chief sperm bank," wrote Lee.
He then went on to describe the disgusting techniques used by staff to retrieve the sperm; all of which a PR rep for SeaWorld described as "beyond ludicrous," saying PETA is as careless with facts "as they are extreme in their views."
Not one to back down, Tommy Lee has fired off a second letter. "SeaWorld's PR line about the breeding of Tilikum falls flat, given statements PETA has from SeaWorld's own former employees, and it doesn't explain how exactly SeaWorld collects Tilikum's semen without having anyone get into the pool with him," he writes.
Lee then goes on to provide proof from various sources of the techniques described earlier. He ends on a somewhat amusing note, writing:
"To settle this, how about PETA and I come to SeaWorld and videotape the process, and then people can decide how natural it is? It might make your dramatic news releases about a new orca pregnancy or birth less appealing, but the public deserves to know. And they've undoubtedly never seen a sex tape like this."
Ball in your court, SeaWorld.