It is pretty obvious that we live in a very selfie obsessed culture, as social media sites are flooded with them. Many believe that is a sign that our social media culture has become increasingly narcissistic, and an incident on an Argentinian beach has revealed another incident where selfies have gone too far.
Ubergizmo reports that a baby Franciscana dolphin was scooped out of the water by tourists at a beach in Argentina, who wanted to take a selfie with it. This caused a crowd to form, filled with others who wanted to get a selfie with the baby dolphin for themselves.
However, these people didn't know that although dolphins are mammals and air-breathers, they will die if they are taken out of water. Franciscana dolphins have a thick and greasy skin that makes them prone to overheating when they remain out of water for an extended period of time.
To make matters worse, the Franciscana dolphins are an endangered species. Also known as La Plata dolphins, they are only found in Argentina, Uruguay, and Brazil, and fewer than 30,000 of them remain in the wild. They are the only type of river dolphin that can inhabit saltwater, and the primary threat to the La Plata is gill nets, which are known to drown, injure, or attach to marine mammals, causing extreme fatigue.
The Washington Post reports that this incident took place at the beach resort town of Santa Teresita, and it has drawn much wide condemnation from animal lovers and activists. The Argentine Wildlife Foundation (AWF) has released a statement urging people to return dolphins encountered near the shore to ocean waters, in order that this situation not repeat.
There's probably no way to conclude an article about this except by saying that selfies can be downright inappropriate at times. In this case, it resulted in the death of a member of an endangered species. This is one of those times that you hope there was at least one person in the crowd who was willing to stand up and say: "enough is enough". However, video of the footage shows that no one intervened or attempted to return the animal to the water, and it looks like the baby dolphin was just left in the mud presumably after it had passed away.
Yes, it is not surprising that there is a lot of outrage on the Internet from this. This also isn't the first time that a terrible tragedy has occurred due to selfies. Last year, in March, a group of women took a group selfie in front of the aftermath of a New York City gas explosion in the East Village. The Geek Church reports that a picture of these women appeared on the cover of the New York Post with the appropriate caption of "Village Idiots".