One of the odd patterns surrounding Donald Trump is that whatever he fears, thrives. His rage at Vanity Fair boosted the magazine’s subscription numbers. His attempts to shut down the tell-all Michael Wolff book Fire and Fury made what was already a highly anticipated book a massive bestseller. And now, amid the revelations he allegedly an affair with adult film actress Stormy Daniels, there’s another winner. Trump’s reported utter terror of sharks has driven donations to shark conservation charities through the roof.
As Marketwatch reports, once word hit that Trump was afraid of sharks, people decided it’d be funny to donate to shark charities in Trump’s name. A lot of people, it turns out:
“We have been receiving donations in Trump’s name since the story was published,” said Cynthia Wilgren, chief executive officer and co-founder of Atlantic White Shark Conservancy, based in Chatham, Mass. Most of the money has come from first-time donors, she added. “It can certainly be a challenge to raise money for a species that most people fear,” Wilgren said.
Sure, it may be driven by spite, or at least amusement, but shark conservation is one of the more important, and underfunded, efforts in our quest to preserve the oceans. Sharks are often captured, have their fins cut off, and tossed back in the ocean where they’re unable to swim. They then may be eaten by other predators. If they’re not, they sink to the bottom of the ocean and are crushed to death.
Organizations like the AWSC and Sea Shepherd educate people about the importance of sharks, reveal poaching operations, and generally keep the misunderstood predator safe. If you’d like to help this important cause, you can donate to the AWSC or donate to Sea Shepherd’s Shark Bodyguard program. Even if you’re just sticking it to somebody, at least you’re doing it in a way that does some good.