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The Strange Devolution of Sea Shepherd.

In 1977 I created an organization that I named the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. I also created the logos including the iconic Jolly Roger.

I worked for years without pay, organizing ships and crews and launching controversial campaigns. I was beaten, arrested and accused of many thing in an attempt to demonize me.

The organization became an international movement. We had our own TV show: Whale Wars. We made documentaries and we wrote books.

Over a period of 50 years, I commanded numerous ships on hundreds of campaigns, from the high arctic to the Southern Ocean, in the waters of the Pacific, the Atlantic and the Indian Ocean, in the Baltic, the Mediterranean, from the Galapagos to Pitcairn, From the Labrador Coast to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. through the Panama Canal, the Suez Canal and the Kiel Canal. Along the Aleutians to the shores of Siberia. So many ports of call and so many confrontations with whalers, sealers, poachers, turtle killers, dolphin murderers and the evil that is destroying life in the sea.

With me, over the years there were thousands of passionate crew members who worked hard long hours in remote hostile waters.

We were Sea Shepherd. We were confrontational and controversial, and we got things done. We saved lives in the deep and we delivered a strong and persistent message to the world that the Ocean is dying and when the Ocean dies, we all die, our children die, everything we love and treasure will be gone.

There is nothing more important than the conservation, defense and protection of marine biodiversity – absolutely nothing because the Ocean is the foundation of life.

For 50 years I have campaigned for life, for the Ocean and the future.

And yet today I have been threatened with trademark violations if I wear a shirt with the name or logos of Sea Shepherd. Anyone can buy a Sea Shepherd shirt and they can wear it EXCEPT for myself.

My official face book page was shut down for 30 days because I was accused of trademark violations. The violation was a banner photo of myself wearing a Sea Shepherd shirt in front of a Sea Shepherd flag.

I was told that my history and my reputation is an embarrassment to those who now run Sea Shepherd USA. I was too outspoken, too controversial, too confrontational for the current Board of Directors and thus my picture, my history and my bio have been removed from the website of the organization that I founded.

Too many complaints from fishing industries and governments that we upset.

As a result, the founder of Sea Shepherd and the leader of decades of campaigns is not allowed to use the Sea Shepherd name or the logos of the movement I created.

This aggressive attempt to silence me will not work. I have created the Captain Paul Watson Foundation. They at least do not own my name.

And with the Foundation I intend to carry on in the spirit of aggressive non-violence to do all that we can to defend, protect and conserve life in the sea.

They can take the name and logos I created, they can take the flag and they can continue to own and control something they had no part in creating.

But the one thing they can never take is the passion, the courage, the persistence, and the imagination that can recreate what once was the greatest marine conservation movement on the planet and will continue to be once again.

Thank you to Sea Shepherd France, the United Kingdom, Brazil, New Zealand, Austria and Tahiti for standing by me and for recognizing the importance to be what we need to be and that is to be both confrontational and very controversial as we continue to make waves.

Portrait by Sheppard Fairey

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