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WATCH > Video of Five-Year-Old Swimming With Sharks Goes Viral: Were Her Parents Being Reckless?

News 2012/07/08 00:07:30
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When they returned from their vacation in the Bahamas, David and Elena Barnes decided to share a home video of their family snorkeling with sharks on YouTube. What was meant to be viewed primarily by friends and relatives quickly went viral, provoking massive amounts of controversy. In the beginning of the 9-minute clip, Power Boat Adventures employees are seen feeding nurse, reef, and lemon sharks. Later in the video, David, Elena, and their five-year-old daughter Anaia are seen swimming with them.

As the video piled up hits, the Internet began chiming in. Many criticized the parents for putting their daughter in danger, while others supported their actions. Eventually, the couple disabled commenting on the video and left a message defending their parenting skills. They explained that these varieties of sharks are rarely aggressive and that the company in the Bahamas has been operating for twenty years without incident.

They also appeared on “Good Morning America” to defend themselves. “Life is too short to be boring,” said Elena. “There’s just always risk assessments in life every day,” added David. “I’m more concerned that they don’t put seatbelts in school buses.”

So, what do you think SodaHeads? Were David and Elena Barnes being reckless?

Read More: http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/lifestyle/2012/07/pare...

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Top Opinion

  • Wyveryx 2012/07/08 00:11:57
    No
    Wyveryx
    +18
    I'd guess that school buses are more dangerous than these sharks. At least they're teaching their daughter how to live life.

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Opinions

  • Sweetness 2012/07/08 18:52:13
    Yes
    Sweetness
    +3
    That's really awesome that she got to do it...but Sharks are sharks..no matter how "harmless" they are..
  • mwg0735 2012/07/08 18:45:39
  • SJG mwg0735 2012/07/08 18:59:17
    SJG
    +2
    Another stupid comment from an idiotic Conservative!
  • Common ... SJG 2012/07/08 19:10:10
    Common Sense Conservative
    +2
    Would you put your daughter in that situation?
  • SJG Common ... 2012/07/08 22:36:40
    SJG
    Not talking about the issue, just your stupid comment.
  • Common ... SJG 2012/07/08 22:37:33
    Common Sense Conservative
    +2
    Kind of hard to do when I didn't make a comment until after you did.

    Brilliant!!!
  • DizziNY Common ... 2012/07/09 04:03:45
    DizziNY
    +1
    SJG's comment proves liberals ARE stupid! ROFLMAO!
  • Common ... DizziNY 2012/07/09 04:07:04
    Common Sense Conservative
    You made me laugh.
  • DizziNY Common ... 2012/07/09 04:28:47
    DizziNY
    +1
    Then I did my one good deed for the day :)
  • SJG DizziNY 2012/07/09 11:48:57
    SJG
    Now we have a club of stupid Conservative comments.
  • mwg0735 SJG 2012/07/09 06:48:16
  • SJG mwg0735 2012/07/09 11:49:39
    SJG
    Keep going, your comments are getting dumber and dumber.
  • mwg0735 SJG 2012/07/09 14:53:37
  • DizziNY mwg0735 2012/07/09 04:03:01
    DizziNY
    +1
    I agree 110%.
  • tobe mwg0735 2012/07/09 14:26:27
    tobe
    why do people wanta make everything about politics
  • mwg0735 tobe 2012/07/09 14:54:09
  • tobe mwg0735 2012/07/09 15:12:24
    tobe
    a political stereotype is still a stereotype. i don't blame peoples decision making good or bad on the way they vote.
  • mwg0735 tobe 2012/07/09 15:40:19
  • alex 2012/07/08 18:43:03
    No
    alex
    +1
    Are you kidding me?
  • Wayne 2012/07/08 18:38:42
    Yes
    Wayne
    +7
    It is all fun and games until someone gets eaten. Wild animals are exactly that and are not totally predictable, If the results would have been different they would have been devastated as a family, The safety of children are in the hands of the parents for they are no capable to make the right choices, the parents going swimming with the sharks is their choice, but intentionally endangering their child is very questionable.
  • Rubyking 2012/07/08 18:07:28
    No
    Rubyking
    it's just a shark
  • Horace Nick 2012/07/08 17:57:03
    No
    Horace Nick
    +1
    Is that even legal? Even in the Bahamas?legal bahamas
  • Common ... Horace ... 2012/07/08 19:13:13
    Common Sense Conservative
    +2
    Legal? To swim in the ocean.
  • Eric 2012/07/08 17:49:13
    Yes
    Eric
    +5
    I was going to answer "No" because it seemed like nanny statism. However, Lemon sharks and reef sharks have attacked humans. Apparently none of the attacks were fatal but then we are talking about a 5 yr old.
    In 1969, two women were killed by grizzlies in 2 separate attacks in Glacier Natl Park. Prior to that, for 60 years or so, there were no attacks there and tourists were having fun being close to grizzlies, with garbage being left out just to attract the bears to the lodges where the people were.
    Wild animals are wild.
  • DizziNY Eric 2012/07/09 04:05:34 (edited)
    DizziNY
    applause


    Just so you know, I love animals, I don't even eat them. However, I wouldn't want to try to shake "paws" with a bear, they may just eat me for a snack.
  • RoyJLores 2012/07/08 17:44:41
    No
    RoyJLores
    +3
    *Sigh* Contrary to popular belief we are not really part of shark's diet they would much rather munch on a fish or a blubbery seal than on us and as long as the dives are conducted safely I don't see the problem.
  • Just MEH....Piwan 2012/07/08 17:21:08
    Yes
    Just MEH....Piwan
    +4
    maybe just a little, and Lemon sharks CAN be aggressive. Personally I would be thrilled if my parents rtook me to do that, because i love sharks and feel it would be worth the risk. The kid was probably very happy and excited.
  • Inquisitve Kat 2012/07/08 17:12:51
    No
    Inquisitve Kat
    +3
    I'm pretty sure the company in the Bahamas wouldn't be allowing children to swim with sharks, if the danger was as bad as people seem to think. Sure, I can understand that maybe a shark will act out of character and attack... well, sure, but if that's the case, don't let your child play with the pet dog, either, since your dog might also snap unexpectedly.
  • Adrianna 2012/07/08 17:10:15
    No
    Adrianna
    +3
    It is their kid. If they want to use it for shark bait, that is up to them. Maybe the kid was naughty and they were looking for a little sea-justice.
  • Selkets... Adrianna 2012/07/08 22:46:32
    Selketskiss
    +1
    LOL...
    lol
  • LarryStylinson 2012/07/08 16:43:28
    No
    LarryStylinson
    +1
    I'm jealous of that little girl I love sharks
  • darlenedoskas1969 2012/07/08 16:29:56
    No
    darlenedoskas1969
    +2
    my daughter would LOVE that!!!

    and so would I! the people who are calling these parents reckless are simply fearful of what they don't understand... just because they are afraid doesn't mean everyone else should be
  • Odinsown 2012/07/08 16:24:26
    No
    Odinsown
    +2
    Go parents, this kid now has one of the coolest stories to tell for the rest of her life.
  • Dana 2012/07/08 16:23:20
    Yes
    Dana
    +5
    That is just plain stupid AND reckless! I don't care what kind of sharks they are, something could have happened, and then what?

    Steve Irwin, super famous, and experienced with all kinds of very dangerous animals, was killed in the most benign way by a stingray, a very peaceful sea creature.

    Anything can happen and you need to be smart. This was not smart. Gee, do we even need to say this? Parents are supposed to keep their children safe.
  • Inquisi... Dana 2012/07/08 17:17:15
    Inquisitve Kat
    +3
    The family dog might attack, too, or the school bus might get in a fatal crash... life is full of risk.
  • Wayne Inquisi... 2012/07/08 18:45:15
    Wayne
    +1
    Exactly, but rick can be managed and calculated, your point about vehicle accidents is a given, but as you point out the family dog might bite as well as a shark, immediate vicinity of the shark is controllable.
  • Inquisi... Wayne 2012/07/08 21:30:07
    Inquisitve Kat
    +1
    I see that point, but I think this was a controlled environment... it was through a company, so these are likely tame sharks.
  • Wayne Inquisi... 2012/07/08 21:55:01
  • Selkets... Wayne 2012/07/08 22:49:42 (edited)
    Selketskiss
    +1
    Here is a laughing tame shark...
  • Wayne Selkets... 2012/07/09 02:30:47
    Wayne
    +1
    LOL! very funny!

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