‘My blood boiled at his ignorance’

Tara
Tara Bradbury
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Mark Critch says he couldn’t hold back his ambush of PETA news conference

Mark Critch says he wasn’t quite sure whether or not he’d go through with his plans to ambush Pamela Anderson Tuesday — until he became overcome with anger.
Anderson and “The Simpsons” co-creator Sam Simon were in St. John’s with members of PETA.

Simon’s charitable foundation is offering $1 million to Canadian sealers as an incentive to “facilitate and achieve a government buyout” program and end the seal hunt. The group visited the Canadian Sealers Association on Hamilton Avenue in St. John’s — whose office was closed — to slip a letter under the door.

Critch, clutching a handwritten cheque of his own, burst into a news conference held by the group to make Anderson a different offer: $1 million to give up acting for good. The “This Hour Has 22 Minutes” actor, comedian and satirist — no stranger to political and news conference ambushes — told The Telegram afterwards he had been debating whether or not to go through with the ambush, until Simon told members of the media sealers could take the $1 million and “all go to the Shamrock (pub) and The Keg (steakhouse) and have some fun instead of clubbing the seals.”

“My blood boiled at his ignorance,” Critch said. “Like we are a bunch of twee leprechauns, too stupid to know better.

“Pam said a million dollars is a lot of money for Newfoundland. I decided to make her offer back to her. She, too, is a seasonal worker, after all. Her IMDB (film and television web profile) says she hasn’t had an American acting job since 2008.”

Critch offered Anderson the cheque, but then recanted and said he’d give her $165 instead — the amount, he said, each sealer would receive if they accepted Simon’s offer.

“Will you give up your livelihood for $165?” he asked the “Baywatch” actress, who is an honorary PETA director.

“This is not a buyout,” Anderson told a crowd of sealers taking in the press conference, amid heckling. “This business is over. There’s no market for seal pelts.”

Dan Mathews, PETA’s senior vice-president, stressed the offer pertained only to the commercial seal hunt, and was intended to be a bonus to prompt talks between the association and government to come to a buyout agreement, as other failed industries like asbestos mining and tobacco farming have done.

“This buyout calls very clearly for (sealers) to be able to resume individual sealing. It excludes the native hunt. It excludes the personal hunt,” he said. When asked why the organization didn’t address the cattle industry instead, Mathews replied, “At some point, the meat trade will probably die as well, and we’ll be there with a buyout for them as well, but right now we’re here to talk about the seals.”

Before the news conference began, Simon, who has terminal cancer, was approached by longtime fisheries advocate Jim Winter, who expressed concern for his health.

“I have every sympathy for you,” Winter said. “What I don’t have sympathy for, I’m very sad to say, (are) your ideas about animal rights.

“There is nothing to discuss. Our dignity, our rights, are not for sale for a paltry million or a hundred times a million. We have a right to live our lives. You have no right to deprive us of that. This is a question of an insane set of values that attacks rural peoples. If you would really like to do something, why don’t you go back to America and go after the people in America who hunt seals in Alaska? Why don’t you go and help the children in America who are dying of cancer? Please leave us alone. Take your insane group and go away.”

Winter accused Simon of organizing the event as part of a “YouTube moment” for animal rights fundraising, earning applause from the crowd. Simon disagreed.

“This is a real thing; an attempt to end a horror show that shouldn’t be taking place in the 21st century,” he said. “I liked when you started and you appeared so concerned about me, but it appears you’re just using this to grandstand during our press conference, so please stop.”

Visit http://bit.ly/JFgb2d to read Simon’s letter to Eldred Woodford of the sealers association.

tbradbury@thetelegram.com

Twitter: @tara_bradbury

This is a corrected version

Organizations: Canadian Sealers Association, The Keg

Geographic location: Hamilton Avenue, Newfoundland, America Alaska

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  • a smith
    December 20, 2013 - 20:43

    re Mr. Brookfield's comment on Mark Critch .My wfe and I attended the east Coast Music Awards on MUN campus some years ago in which Mark Critch participted as host I believe .He was quite new at the comedy game then but to suggest he is not a solid comedian now is unfair .He has come a long way and is good company with our wonderful Grand Band comedy crew .His timing and punchlines are great .No wif we could only teach him how to dance like Greg Malone in 2012 Revue in GFW .Let's encourage all our talent instead of trying to tear them down .A person who succeeds in comedy is great indeed .M Re seal protest ,my real peeve was how Gerry Byrne spoiled the levity with his salacious comments on Pam's Std .Totally uncalled for and very unbecoming for an MP . The Newfie group handled teh two interlopers quite nicely without external help . Blair BrookfieldDecember 18, 2013 - 23:46Mark Critch could only wish to enjoy the same success as Mr. Simon or Ms. Anderson in the entertainment industry. He relies on government cheques to keep his career afloat. I wish he would give up acting and save me, the taxpayer some cash

  • taxpayertoo
    December 20, 2013 - 12:35

    This has become a very emotional issue so much so that folks are missing the point...that is we live in a free society where we are "supposed" to be able to make our own choices as to how we live. How dare celebrities come and try and tell us how to live. How dare they try and buy us off. Some folks prefer to be vegetarians but you don't see us meat eaters trying to shove meat down their throats. If you want to do some good go help those that are starving and stop bothering those who are trying to make a living. If you give a man a fish you feed him for a meal if you teach him how to fish you feed him for life. So Peta you want us to change our culture so that we become more dependent on the likes of folks like you?? Good job Mark and the boys!!!!

  • Blair Brookfield
    December 18, 2013 - 23:46

    Mark Critch could only wish to enjoy the same success as Mr. Simon or Ms. Anderson in the entertainment industry. He relies on government cheques to keep his career afloat. I wish he would give up acting and save me, the taxpayer some cash.

  • Blair Brookfield
    December 18, 2013 - 23:34

    Seals didn’t destroy the fishery, humans did. And not the Spanish, either. It was Newfoundlanders and anyone who thinks otherwise is an ignorant moron.

    • Kevin
      December 20, 2013 - 10:40

      I think the only MORON in this is you Blair. And of corse Mr. Simon and Pamela - TWO no bodies looking to get back in the spotlight by using the seal industry as a way in. And further more to offer $1 million to the harvesters and the fisherman/fisherwomen was a complete lack of respect for them. But then again what do you expect from TWO MORONS like the two of them !!!!!!

  • Kurt
    December 18, 2013 - 22:15

    I think this trend should continue with PETA. A lot of places get harassed to Jo end by this organization, but between Danny vs Paul McCartney and Critch vs Anderson, it seems as though we've established a pattern where every seven years PETA comes to NL, falls on their faces and is too embarrassed to come back. Kind of like how Van Halen goes through their singers in one sense. Lol

  • mom
    December 18, 2013 - 20:55

    Way to go, Mark!

  • OneOpinion
    December 18, 2013 - 20:11

    Mark Critch is very brave. Simon has more than likely put Mark on the secret Hollywood blacklist by now. No chance of movie or TV parts for you sir!

  • Bob Cobb
    December 18, 2013 - 19:37

    The low blows against Pam Anderson were uncalled for yesterday. The issue was supposed to be the seal hunt and of course Newfoundlanders just changed the subject to personal issues. Sad.

  • Bob Cobb
    December 18, 2013 - 19:29

    The low blows against Pam Anderson were uncalled for yesterday. The issue was supposed to be the seal hunt and of course Newfoundlanders just changed the subject to personal issues. Sad.

  • Max
    December 18, 2013 - 18:22

    Pamela Anderson is not the best spokesperson this group could get. Although she is probably the cheapest. I am not personally involved with the Seal hunt, indeed I personally don't know any sealers,. but, I have to agree with the sentiment that there are more important fights to be fought if this type of money is available, it could be put to much better use.

  • Joan
    December 18, 2013 - 18:22

    @ Sonia Pamela Anderson is not Canadian having given up up Canadian citizenship for American status so she could pay less tax.

  • Ryan
    December 18, 2013 - 17:23

    I support PETA in every shape and form... People Eating Tasty Animals

  • Alison Beal
    December 18, 2013 - 17:09

    Bravo to all those who stood up against "PlasticPam" and her cronies in their cheap publicity stunt. I've heard enough from the hypocrites who benefit from the results of biomedical research (PP's boob-enhancing surgeries, Hep-C treatments, cosmetics; Simon's cancer treatments), live cushy jet-set lives, and command attention simply because they have wealth along with sufficient arrogance to preach senseless pie-in-the-sky morality to an intellectually lazy and hypnotized-by-fame public, ready to believe whatever Hollywood tells them. Plastic Pan, and her ilk garner attention by attacking the livelihoods of people they don't know, who live in places they don't understand, and who strive quietly to bring food to the table and comfort to their homes. That publicity stunt wasn't about talking to sealers, it's a money grab directed at those who'll see an edited version of the story on the nightly news. This is not about the seal industry ... it's about bullying and it is sealers being victimized for profit!

  • Anon
    December 18, 2013 - 16:25

    Will she pay the Polar Ice caps to stop melting too? What a joke. PETA is one of the biggest animal cruelty crooks around.

  • Betty Cleary
    December 18, 2013 - 16:25

    PETA should be more concerned about all the hungry & homeless people eating out of garbage cans all over America. If you have a Million dollars to give away Mr. Simon, go to some of the shelters & help the mothers with small children find a descent place to live, no child should have to spend Christmas at a shelter, do some good with your money & give some of these people a hand up. Can you imagine the happy faces of these kids to have their very own place to live. Wouldn't that be a Christmas Miracle for many of those families ? Think about it Mr. Simon, whats more important to you, the lives of a few thousand seals or the lives of a few thousand homeless people !!

  • Amanda
    December 18, 2013 - 15:58

    Don't stop the seal hunt before a can get a pair of those seal skin boots...why don't these people go protest to the killer whales to stop killing seals, if they want to see brutal there's a show. Maybe the killer whales will listen over a cup a tea and a biscuit.

  • Canada 2013
    December 18, 2013 - 15:09

    ASPCA and HSUS under a RICO case in USA. Yes RICO like the mob. They got caught paying people to lie about the conditions at Ringling Bros. Ringling owners Fled Entertainment has the money to fight back. ASPCA just paid 9.3 million in damages to Feld. HSUS to pay double that amount. Google it. There is a reason these groups pick on sealers...it raises money for them and the sealers don't have the capital to fight back.

  • Josephine
    December 18, 2013 - 13:39

    Those members of PETA refuse to see/understand the realities of the fishing industry. What do they believe that seals eat? Drive-thru at McD's? What they really need to do is come live within and partake of the fishing communities. PETA and WWF are huge money making machines tha prey the heart-strings of those who will never depend on making a livelihood from the sea. Please walk in our boots before you give us the boot.

  • Josephine
    December 18, 2013 - 13:38

    Those members of PETA refuse to see/understand the realities of the fishing industry. What do they believe that seals eat? Drive-thru at McD's? What they really need to do is come live within and partake of the fishing communities. PETA and WWF are huge money making machines tha prey the heart-strings of those who will never depend on making a livelihood from the sea. Please walk in our boots before you give us the boot.

  • Annie-Girl
    December 18, 2013 - 12:25

    There will always be those who love to get up and shout about what looks like (on the surface at least) a cause to be taken up in the name of saving the animals, or the earth, or our souls. Brigitte Bardot's crusade to save Canada's seals is a prime example of a famous face behind which there is much ignorance concerning the actual situation. Pamela Anderson is Brigitte Bardot revisited. Thanks, Mark Critch, for standing up against this ignorance.

  • Velma Hart
    December 18, 2013 - 12:24

    We should not give these people, airtime, we should not attend any of their conferences or even acknowledge that they even exist then they wouldn't even come here spouting off their ignorance.

    • Lucy Byrne
      December 18, 2013 - 16:49

      I totally agree with Velma Hart.The less attention we give these ignorant people the better.They'll get the message.

  • Hypocrites one and all are these so called Animal Welfare Bums!
    December 18, 2013 - 11:55

    TheSEALFISHERY.COM site contains an interview that was done by the late CBC journalist Barbarba Frum with Paul Watson in 1970. The Interview is 8 min 43 seconds in duration, it is the 8th audio down the list on the site and it is a must hear if you want to learn of the hypocrisy of the people who run those organizations in the name of ANIMAL WELFARE. As Mr. Watson said in the interview the Seal is the only animal that can invoke donations in the Millions, HE also said, an omnipresent tear in the seal's eye gives it the appearance that it is crying and sad but the tear he said is there to protect its eyes. Mr. Watson went on to take over the job from Mr. Brian Davies, the gentleman he was criticizing in his interview. In the meantime I feel that if we are going to save one animal from being culled, all animals should have the same fate. While I am not a vegan at the moment I could acclimatize to that if I had to and I think we might be all better off.

  • Tim Hicks
    December 18, 2013 - 11:53

    Sealing is not a fun hobby Newfoundlanders do in the winter. It is a source of extra food and income. It is not the right of others to innaccurately judge a bunch people as barbarians just bcs they hunt non endangered cute animals. Humans hunt, kill, consume animals on an hourly basis. Remember that when u eat ur tuna, beef, chicken, bacon, ham, lobster, etc, swat mosquitos in summer, and disinfect ur cuts to prevent septicemia. U r confusing what u percieve to be cute with human consumption and work. No one really wants to kill, but we must accept we live bcs animals die. To deny it is to deny we are human. All depends on how it is done and the extent. "Just bcs you don't like it, don't mean it ain't no good" Travel more and you'll see the human race has incredible diversity. Don't judge if you don't live there.

    • Darryl
      December 19, 2013 - 12:15

      The basis for justifying the killing of animals as something we need to do is faulty logic. We don't need to eat meat.. its an acquired taste..and if we have to eat it at least we can limit our consumption.. Its true we kill living beings just by our existence but its not directly for the most part, or motivated by greed .. so we don't have to kill more with the intention that arises out of greed & a perceived need which is more of a desire from habit. Its 21st century.. we aren't Eskimos here in NL , we don't need greed and ignorance coming in from outside when we still have enough of our own .. we have always been a population wired on indignation, unwilling to accept change , grasping to outdated customs and traditions that are no longer needed in our attempts to maintain our identity. Sad.

    • Darryl
      December 19, 2013 - 12:17

      The basis for justifying the killing of animals as something we need to do is faulty logic. We don't need to eat meat.. its an acquired taste..and if we have to eat it at least we can limit our consumption.. Its true we kill living beings just by our existence but its not directly for the most part, or motivated by greed .. so we don't have to kill more with the intention that arises out of greed & a perceived need which is more of a desire from habit. Its 21st century.. we aren't Eskimos here in NL , we don't need greed and ignorance coming in from outside when we still have enough of our own .. we have always been a population wired on indignation, unwilling to accept change , grasping to outdated customs and traditions that are no longer needed in our attempts to maintain our identity. Sad.

  • Tim Hicks
    December 18, 2013 - 11:35

    Sealing is not a fun hobby Newfoundlanders do in the winter. It is a source of extra food and income. It is not the right of others to innaccurately judge a bunch people as barbarians just bcs they hunt non endangered cute animals. Humans hunt, kill, consume animals on an hourly basis. Remember that when u eat ur tuna, beef, chicken, bacon, ham, lobster, etc, swat mosquitos in summer, and disinfect ur cuts to prevent septicemia. U r confusing what u percieve to be cute with human consumption and work. No one really wants to kill, but we must accept we live bcs animals die. To deny it is to deny we are human. All depends on how it is done and the extent. "Just bcs you don't like it, don't mean it ain't no good" Travel more and you'll see the human race has incredible diversity. Don't judge if you don't live there.

  • Chris
    December 18, 2013 - 11:31

    I'm suprised Mark Critch didn't ask Pamela Anderson about the report issued by the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) on People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals' animal care record at its pet shelter in Norfolk, VA. 89.4 percent of the adoptable pets, in its care during 2012, were euthanized, an average of over 30 pets per week. That's 1647 cats and dogs being euthanized, while only 19, yes, NINETEEN were placed in adoptive homes. Since 1998, the death toll is 29,398. This can be verified at the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Also check out: http://www.petakillsanimals.com/proof and the website showing the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, for the reporting year 2010. http://www.petakillsanimals.com/downloads/PetaKillsAnimals.pdf As for Pamela Anderson, she's irrelevent.

  • Chris
    December 18, 2013 - 11:28

    I'm suprised Mark Critch didn't ask Pamela Anderson about the report issued by the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) on People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals' animal care record at its pet shelter in Norfolk, VA. 89.4 percent of the adoptable pets, in its care during 2012, were euthanized, an average of over 30 pets per week. That's 1647 cats and dogs being euthanized, while only 19, yes, NINETEEN were placed in adoptive homes. Since 1998, the death toll is 29,398. This can be verified at the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Also check out: http://www.petakillsanimals.com/proof and the website showing the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, for the reporting year 2010. http://www.petakillsanimals.com/downloads/PetaKillsAnimals.pdf As for Pamela Anderson, she's irrelevent.

  • Sonia
    December 18, 2013 - 10:35

    These people (PETA) are out of touch with reality. They mention the baby seals. Don't they know that it's a crime here in Newfoundland to kill the baby seals. It was all a publicity gimmick. Poor Pamela Anderson looked ridiculous in her high heel shoes making her way through the ice and snow. She obviously knows nothing about our climate either. I'm ashamed that she is a Canadian.

  • saelcove
    December 18, 2013 - 10:19

    Someone should give her a million to stop saying she is Canadian

  • david
    December 18, 2013 - 09:37

    (Upfront apology for length..) Yes, they are factless arrogant, self-righteous zombies. And great job, Mark Critch for a great retort. But this battle is lost, the David Suzuki's from Disneyworld have won, and we helped them do it. Had we not been ignorant of what was being done in the 1970s, when they recorded the fateful films that have sustained and carried them ever since, we wouldn't be here now. Had we at any point in the early days responded in a way other than unruly mobs, immature insults, and generally enhancing their image as martyrs risking their lives by setting foot here, maybe it would have at least lost momentum. But everything we did, combined with everything our governments did not, got us here. The only thing we can do is learn from our mistakes. There should be no one on Earth more street-savvy and skeptical of the "Save the Earth from {insert cause here}" types than us. It is the most corrupt, deceitful industry on Earth, bar none. It is a death squad for anyone or thing it chooses, and the selection process isn't exactly rigorous. Don't let them bully you with the catchy slur "Denier"......the capacity to INTELLIGENTLY disagree is the only defense anyone has against the eco-huns. This battle is lost.....but we must win the war.

  • Flipper Pie
    December 18, 2013 - 09:34

    Huge thanks to Jim Winter, Mark Critch and Earl McCurdy for their well thought out speeches and responses to this Hollywood clown act. Remember, it was not anyone from here who attempted to ambush Pam and Sam, it was they who tried this sudden publicity stunt with very little pre-arrival notice to the media and the intended target the CSA. Now I'm off to see if my bar tab at the "Shamrock" is topped up $165 thanks to some generous tourist.

  • Cash
    December 18, 2013 - 09:22

    What does "UGG" boots do with the rest of the lamb when they use the skin and wool....nothing. These guys got to get a grasp on reality.

  • Geri
    December 18, 2013 - 08:47

    This is somewhat ironic...we have two people from the US, in NL, asking us to stop seal hunt because it is 'cruel'...well I would be the first on the podium to disagree with any type of 'cruelty' to any animal...and to continue to find a better way to prevent it. However, cruelty to animals is much more prevelant in the US than it is in Newfoundland. I suggest that Pam and Simon take an hour or so out of their day to watch the film 'Food Inc.', that shows brutal treatment of animals happening on a daily basis, in the cattle and chicken industry, in their own country. I listened to their interview on radio and I must say that Pamela did not appear to be very well informed. I suggest she do a little more research about a chosen subject before publicly speaking out about it. I have no insults to hurl here as that would make me no better than those who have done so. It is understandable that Newfoundlanders are upset by this brash, belittling offer...including me....however, let's show a little dignity here, as a people, and stop the personal insults . Although allowing us to let off steam...a public form is not the place for personal insults, it somewhat minimizes our credibility and intelligence.

    • Picotrain
      December 18, 2013 - 14:45

      Pamela Anderson was born and raised in British Columbia.

  • Watcher
    December 18, 2013 - 08:27

    “At some point, the meat trade will probably die as well..." Unbelievable! Out of touch with reality much?

  • SteveR
    December 18, 2013 - 08:25

    Our nation's Prime Minister has a hard enough time getting his way with us NLer's. So why should we entertain any demands from Hollywood imperialists who assume they're right?

  • yvette butt
    December 18, 2013 - 08:13

    I will take the million for Beagle Paws.....please.

  • Give
    December 18, 2013 - 07:50

    Give the million to the Philipines. Give it to injured soldiers. Give it to veterans. People come before animals.

    • Lost Values
      December 18, 2013 - 21:43

      What a crazy idea - people are more important than animals!?

  • JasonDawe
    December 18, 2013 - 07:23

    Mark Critch for Premier (next time around). As I don't agree with pelts in general - I am all for using all possible parts of an animal if slaughtered. If an animal is killed for meat, then using the pelt is not a bad thing at all. If killed just for pelt and everything else discarded... no. Thank you Mark for having the courage to make a statement.

  • Steve
    December 18, 2013 - 07:04

    A million dollar cheque to end sealing? That's as preposterous as building a monorail in downtown Springfield.

  • Alice
    December 18, 2013 - 06:59

    I would like seal skin boots for Christmas.

    • seanoairborne
      December 19, 2013 - 15:39

      And a hat, coat and flipper pie washed down with a jug of Screech!

  • Robert
    December 18, 2013 - 06:57

    I find it very hard to believe that these Hollywood types came all the way to St. John's to conduct a media scrum. Keep an eye on these people and we will see the true motive. I expect there is more to this story then a dying man's attempt to buy immortality!

  • Pierre Neary
    December 18, 2013 - 06:53

    Nothing but a stunt that backfired on PETA. Their ignorance and lies were evident. Go back to the US and play with your guns.

    • seanoairborne
      December 18, 2013 - 12:55

      Speaking of "ignorance"go back to the US and play with your guns"?HUH?We don't "play"with guns meat head.We use them to fend off the scum that is rampant in many of our bigger cities.Just like they're rampant in yours.You have no protection from the scum that reside in your midst.That's the difference.You're stuck with 911 and a ten or twenty minute wait time for emergency personnel to arrive and haul away your carrion in a meat wagon, or zipped up in a body bag.Stick to the subject matter meatball and forget your dislike of my great country!Besides,Pam Anderson is a has been Canadian actress,not American.

  • Jon
    December 18, 2013 - 06:40

    Thank you Mark Critch!!