Last week, William McKeever argued that, while we have to be careful about the sharks off Cape Cod, it may be time to think of them in a different way.

In other parts of the world, he wrote, beach communities have embraced these majestic creatures — turning cage-diving into a significant industry that offers everyday people a life-changing close-up with one of our greatest apex predators.

If enough people got that opportunity, he wrote, it could draw much-needed public attention to the ocean.

But an online commenter who goes by the name “johnsmith11111111111111” says a fatal attack off the coast of Wellfleet last fall changed everything:


I don’t propose an answer, but ...

The shark lobby needs to realize that last year’s death has fundamentally changed something very important to many thousands of people — the ability to swim in the ocean.

Last year you could. Now you can’t.

That’s a big deal.

For many, this is some of the little contact they ever get with nature. Losing that is not just a question of finding another activity — it’s a basic loss, a further disconnect, that will only damage environmental causes.