i understand where you are coming from Kat, and its a hard question to answer. Is my thrill enough of a justification to go fishing in general? for me it is. The whole idea of sports fishing has developed into a huge industry of which many people make a living from. Plus my thrill extends past just fighting an catching a fish. i love the experience of being in such close contact to such a cool animal. Can only learn so much from a book or internet video.
i think it also comes down to individuals morals. As someone who as copped a lot of flak for shark fishing in the past, one thing ive found interesting is that people have zero problem with me fishing for mullet to then cut into pieces to use as bait to catch bream, but for some reason when you say the word shark...people lose their bananas. As if sharks have more feelings then other fish etc. Are my actions of taking a mullet purely for bait to catch other fish justified? for me it is. Also, the bigger the shark, the more "offended" people tend to become. When you say to people that you tag sharks for a research program, their anger usually magically disappears. Which i think just shows peoples moral compass limits on the issue.
@Drop Bear makes a great point about the experience and education side to it. I once caught an extremely rare type of hammerhead shark in the bay which i tagged and released. I was the contacted by someone from a university who wanted as much detail about the shark, where and how it was caught etc. They were very surprised to see this capture. This wouldn't have happened if i wasn't fishing with the intent to release. Also begs the question, if someone else was to capture this and taken it to eat...would have taken a very rare shark thinking it was just a normal hammer of legal size, which was my thought at the time.
To each their own, and you make some really valid points. This will be a topic that will always be slightly contentious issue. But good on you for outlining your point of view on the matter and not just bad mouthing the couple in this video. If only everyone else was that civil and nice lol