The Sea Lions - An Allegory

October 24, 2015

This blog post was featured in the Huffington Post on October 21, 2015.There is an island off the coast of Mexico where a unique breed of sea lions congregate. They are trying to survive. They are endangered species. In the last hundred years, half of this sea lion population has been clubbed and cruelly murdered.The problem is that this tiny island was at that time populated by a colony of birds. When the birds found themselves being displaced, naturally they fought for their place on the island. They would sneak to the resting places of the sea lions and kill the babies…or any sea lion that was weak and vulnerable.Naturally, the sea lions responded and whenever possible, would chase the birds away. If they were quick enough to catch one of the attacking birds, they would retaliate.So what followed was a war between the birds and the sea lions. All the other animals sided with the birds. After all, the birds were being displaced.The problem was the sea lions had no other place where they could retreat and feel safe. They were frightened. They did not trust anyone. They felt endangered everywhere they were.The birds on the other hand could fly to other islands nearby which were populated by similar birds. Family, you might think. But not so. Unfortunately for those displaced birds, their “brothers and sisters” did not want them. They kept them isolated, almost as though they were locked in cages with little food and no future.Poor birds. Poor sea lions.Why does the world not find a way to protect these sea lions? They have been adding value to the animal world for generations. They are smart, innovative. They swim to the top of the food chain and thus stand out in any field they get involved.Maybe the reason they should be protected is the reason why they are rejected. Who likes a boy in class who is the first to raise his hand whenever the teacher asks a question?Who likes the grade buster? Don’t the other kids beat this nerd up whenever they can?What will happen if at the end of the day these sea lions disappear?I think the world will be significantly poorer.Guess who this allegory is about?Just thinking.Ichak Kalderon Adizes

Written by
Dr. Ichak Adizes